Whilst Open House Festival is being celebrated for its breadth of Americana and Indie Folk acts which will give most festivals a run for their money, it also has a great traditional Irish music line-up.
To kick things off this year the award winning fiddle trio Fidil will be performing. Fidil are Cíarán Ó Maonaigh, Aidan O’Donnell and Damien McGeehan who have been making quite a name for themselves recently with their fiery exubernat playing, a hallmark of their Donegal roots.
There is also the Galway County Session featuring Maírtín O’Connor, Liz & Yvonne Kane, Steve Cooney, Aine Ní Droighneáin and Nathan “crazy legs” Pilatzke. Now that’s a line-up and a half. Maírtín O’Connor has been honing his accordion skills since the age of nine and has featured in the irish super groups De Dannan and The Boys of the Lough. I’m sure many of you will be familiar with the guitar playing Steve Cooney who was featured on the BBC Highland Sessions. The Kane sisters are a talented fiddle duo from Letterfrack, Connemara, Co. Galway and they have just released their third album ‘Side by Side’. Aine Ní Droighneáin is a Sean-Nós singer which will certainly be an atmospheric performance and as you probably gathered by the name, Nathan “crazy legs” Pilatzke is a step dancer who has been touring the world with the Chieftains along with his brother, Jon.
Also appearing are Donegal fiddler, Bríd Harper and Dermot Byrne of Altan.
There a couple of themed events going on including Completely Banjaxed – Banjo night Pt II. This line-up is mighty indeed: Cathal Hayden, Brian McGrath, Eamonn Coyne, Marcus Moloney & Brona Graham + accompanists Ed Boyd & John Joe Kelly.
Then there is Girls are better than boys……. or are they ? This wee dual will be between Méabh O’Hare, Grace Kelly & Edel Fox versus Barry Kerr, Ruadhraí O’Kane & Tony O’Connell + accompanists Ed Boyd & John Joe Kelly.
And to round the week off will be the mighty fiddle player Siobhan Peoples (daughter of the legendary Tommy Peoples), Michelle O’Brien & Paul Meehan.
I’m certainly looking forward to these acts and I’m sure the atmosphere will be spot on with sessions spilling out into pubs late into the night…I’ll certainly be looking for them!
The Festival kicks off on 7th Sepetember and runs for a week. To find out more pay a visit to the Open house Festival website. Remember to check out the flights to Belfast, there are some great deals to be had if you’d like to attend this incredible festival in the cultural Cathedral quarter of Belfast!