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It’s another first for Iúr Cinn Fleadh. Hot on the heels of Paul Brady being booked for Newry’s own citywide festival, yet another living legend of Irish music has confirmed their concert for the Fleadh weekend – the Kilfenora Céilí band!

This will be the first concert in the North for the band, who continue to break new ground with their innovative recordings, artistic collaborations, repertoire and concert presentations. They will also mark the event with the northern release of their new album Both Sides Now – taken from the Joni Mitchell songbook.

Kilfenora Céilí Band
Kilfenora Céilí Band

Together with guests – singers Edel Vaughan, Jerry Lynch, dancer Laura Minogue, and world champion Irish dancing brothers Michael and Matthew Gardiner – Kilfenora will stage their entertaining show at Newry Town Hall on 6th September.

The 13-piece band are a 110-year-old phenomenon from County Clare. Their current line-up is much younger than that, of course! They include – leader John Lynch (banjo, mandolin), Claire Griffin (accordion), Tim Collins (concertina), Gary Shannon (flute, whistle), Anthony Quigney (flute, whistle, piano), Anne Marie McCormack (fiddle), Sinéad Heagney (fiddle, viola), Anne Rynne (fiddle), Eimear Howley (fiddle, viola), Fintan McMahon (piano), Sean Griffin (drums), Brian O’Grady (double bass) and Sharon Howley (cello).

This legendary group take their rich musical heritage into the future with a show that is expertly choreographed, boasting rhythmic traditional tunes, together with beautiful songs and witty repartee. Last year’s Fleadh headliner Sharon Shannon described the Kilfenora experience as ‘fantastic, feel-good, happy, lively music’.

The band’s new album Both Sides Now merges both traditional and contemporary repertoire. The recording features everything from Joni Mitchell’s Both Sides Now sung by Edel Vaughan to newly composed waltzes and polkas by band member and concertina player Tim Collins to the familiar upbeat traditional reels and jigs by well-known composers Charlie and Maurice Lennon and others.

‘The album – and even the song itself – is a metaphor for how we, the Kilfenora Céilí Band, have adapted, where the band is coming from and going,’ said Tim Collins.

Fleadh committee member Aileen McCusker said, ‘We’re so excited to have yet another Irish music legend booked for Iúr Cinn Fleadh! Kilfenora’s presence helps to confirm the growing respect and popularity for Newry as a centre for music and culture.’

The Kilfenora concert starts at 8pm in Newry Town Hall on 6th September. Tickets cost £20 from Sean Hollywood Arts Centre, Customer Services Desk at Buttercrane or online at www.iurcinnfleadh.com Paul Brady concert tickets can also be purchased.

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