This Halloween promises to be a musical extravaganza with the return of the Samhain Sessions, featuring some of the finest Irish acts performing in the beautiful surrounds of Derry’s Guildhall.
The sessions, which are delivered by Council in conjunction with Celtronic, take place under Luke Jerram’s stunning Museum of the Moon installation, and last year packed crowds turned out to experience the hauntingly atmospheric performances. Tickets have just gone on sale for the concerts, and are expected to be snapped up fast for these intimate live gigs.
This year’s line-up is just as impressive featuring top artists Lisa Hannigan, David Kitt and Colm Mac Con Iomaire over three nights of fantastic live shows as part of Derry and Strabane’s packed programme of Halloween events.
On Sunday October 28th award winning Irish folk singer Lisa Hannigan will bring her breath taking vocal style to the Guildhall’s Main Hall, where she will be joined by multi-talented musician and singer Kitt Philippa.
Next up on Monday October 29 is well known Irish artist David Kitt, who returns for a second Samhain Sessions performance following his successful show last year. Kitt’s latest album ‘Yous’ has been heralded as ‘sublime’ and ‘heartfelt’ by the critics and this year’s performance promises to be soulful Kitt at his very best. David Kitt will be joined by modern Irish singing sensation Joshua Burnside, who is known for his ability to channel his traditional Irish influences into a whole new blend of world music, electronica and experimental rock. They will share the bill with musician and producer Malojian for a night of exceptional music.
Finally, on Tuesday October 30th join violinist and composer Colm Mac Con Iomaire for a traditional celebration of Irish music with a twist. Colm will be followed by one of the most masterfully diverse musicians in the country, Derry multi-instrumentalist, composer, producer and songwriter Eoin O’Callaghan. His new project Elma Orkestra will take the audience to a more open-ended, soundscape-based terrain for a programme finale to remember.
Speaking on the launch of the sessions, Festivals and Events manager with Derry City and Strabane District Council, Jacqueline Whoriskey, said she was delighted to see their return this year. “The Samhain Sessions last year really were something special, and the combined backdrop of the historic Guildhall and the Museum of the Moon were simply magical. This year’s line-up is just fantastic with the very best modern Irish artists coming together for some really special performances.
“The Samhain Sessions were new to the programme last year so it’s great to see the calibre of artists in the extended line up for this year. Last year we had a lot of interest so I would really encourage people to book early to avoid disappointment.”
Gareth Stewart from Celtronic said: "The Guildhall is undoubtedly one of the finest rooms for music on the island of Ireland. We are so excited at the prospect of having the best Irish musical talent perform in such a special space, underneath the amazing artwork that is Museum of The Moon."
The 2018 Halloween programme will run from 26th October – 3rd November 2018, with over 100 family friendly activities at more than 40 venues, stretching over nine jam-packed days. Among the regular highlights which draw thousands to the city each year, is the Awakening of the Walls, which makes a welcome return for 2018, along with dynamic drumming sensations Spark. There will be ghost tours, story-telling, animation, Halloween markets and so much more happening in the build up to the big night itself on October 31, when the traditional Carnival parade will bring hundreds of performers together to celebrate this year’s Return of the Ancients theme. The night will finish in a spectacular Halloween fireworks finale.
The programme is organised and funded by Derry City and Strabane District Council with support from the Tourism N. Ireland International Fund.
Tickets for the Samhain Sessions are now on sale, priced as follows:
Sunday 28th Oct – Lisa Hannigan, Kitt Philippa (£20 + booking fee)
Monday 29th Oct – David Kitt, Joshua Burnside, Malojian (£13 +booking fee)
Tuesday 30th Oct – Colm Mac Con Iomaire, Elma Orkestra (£13+booking fee)
To book please check out derryhalloween.com.
Picture: David Kitt.
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