Belfast Telegraph

Piping hot festival comes to Belfast

By Damien Murray

Bank Square, Belfast and other venues, Thursday-Sunday, February 3-6

Beginning on Thursday, Féile An Phobail’s early Spring Festival, now in its eighth year, offers an extended weekend of events with a diverse celebration of the traditional arts in four days of marquee-based performance centred on Bank Square in downtown Belfast and other venues throughout west Belfast.

Opening the annual event at the festival marquee and celebrating their 21st anniversary will be Four Men And A Dog, while the Baby Grand Theatre at the Grand Opera House plays host to a great double bill featuring traditional singers Dick Gaughan and Andy Irvine.

Four Men And A Dog, featuring Cathal Hayden, Gerry O’Connor, Gino Lupari, Kevin Doherty and Donal Murphy, have made a name for themselves with their eclectic blend of traditional Irish music with a wide spectrum of other genres, including rap, Southern rock, jazz, blues, bluegrass, polka, country swing, and even salsa.

Glaswegian-born Dick Gaughan is a singer/songwriter, whose songs have been adopted by Billy Bragg, Christy Moore, Mary Black and Capercaillie. Andy Irvine, one of the great contemporary Irish singers (and a founding member of Planxty), has been hailed as “a tradition in himself”.

Other top musical attractions lined-up for the Festival Marquee include the renowned Irish rock band, Hothouse Flowers (Friday, Feb 4), Scotland’s energetic Red Hot Chilli Pipers (above, Saturday, Feb 5) and top Scottish band Capercaillie (Sunday, Feb 6).

Tickets at £10 for the headline music nights are available from www.feilebelfast.com, Féile an Phobail, Teach na Féile, 473 Falls Road, An Chultúrlann, Falls Road, Belfast Welcome Centre or by phone on tel: 028 9031 3440.

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