Carrick-on-Suir celebrates Clancy Brothers Festival in style

Aileen Hahesy


Aileen Hahesy

The Reems busking group performing at the Clancy Festival last Saturday.

Carrick-on-Suir rolled out the red carpet to folk music fans from as far as Britain, Canada and the United States last weekend as it celebrated its 10th annual music and arts festival in memory of the world famous Clancy Brothers folk group. 

The Festival was a showcase of all that is best about the Clancy Brothers hometown featuring a huge and varied programme of music and cultural events that ranged from concerts and pub gigs to singing, busking and songwriting contests, drama, art exhibitions and a packed River Festival family fun day in Sean Healy Park. 

Clancy Festival PRO Pete Smith said all the shows and concerts in the Strand Theatre and Brewery Lane attracted great crowds and there was a great audience reaction to star performers like the High Kings ballad group, Eleanor McEvoy and Robbie O'Connell, who performed with the Clancy Brothers Folk Group for 19 year.  

"It's been a fantastic festival and we have been blessed with some great performances, sell out shows and lots of music in the pubs. The town was humming," he told The Nationalist. 

Carrick-on-Suir Musical Society's  contribution to the Festival entertainment called the "Musical Society Goes Folk" in Christie's Bar in The Strand Theatre was also very popular while the Clancy Festival opening concert at Brewery Lane and lunchtime drama at Brewery Lane "The Yank Outsider" directed by Sandra Power were both sell outs. 

The Festival's two big outdoor events, the Youth Busking Competition in the town centre on Saturday afternoon and River Festival at Sean Healy Park on Sunday afternoon, were blessed with mostly fine weather.  

Hundreds flocked to the River Festival at Sean Healy Park on Sunday afternoon to enjoy the river boat races, listen to bands performing and enjoy an array of stands and side shows from a barbecue set up by local scouts and a mobile planetarium to a group of Viking era re-enactors. There was a strong environmental theme to the River Festival with information stands on the local flora and fauna and nature walks organised.

Festival competitions results and loads more photos from the Clancy Festival are published in this week’s edition of The Nationalist now in shops.