5 Mar, 2018

Minister for Culture Joins Leading Musicians Ahead of St. Patrick’s Festival Performance

Today, Monday March 5th, Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan joined leading Irish musicians Matthew Nolan, Seán Mac Erlaine and Adrian Crowley in the atmospheric surrounds of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in advance of their performance there as part of the St. Patrick’s Festival programme.

Funded by Fáilte Ireland, Dublin City Council and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Ireland’s national festival returns with a cast of thousands of talented home-grown and international musicians, dancers, storytellers and performers coming together for five days and nights of events from March 15th to 19th. The vibrant programme of over 30 events, inspired by this year’s Festival theme of Home, includes a unique film commission project, street-theatre, talks, walks, spoken word, literature, music, Irish language, visual art and more.

Speaking about the Festival, Minister Madigan said: “St. Patrick’s Festival is a wonderful opportunity for everyone across Ireland, and the many thousands of overseas visitors, to celebrate our national holiday. Culture makes an invaluable contribution to our country and the lives of our citizens and the artistic programme for this year’s St. Patrick’s Festival certainly has something for all interests and tastes. I encourage everyone to explore the programme and come out to celebrate and enjoy themselves.”

On March 15th the Festival presents a Screening and Live Performance: The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Directed by Irishman Rex Ingram this screening of the 1921 American silent epic war film will feature a new live score composed by Matthew Nolan and Barry Adamson, known for his work with Magazine and Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, which they will perform live on the night with key collaborators on the project, musician and composer Seán Mac Erlaine, songwriter and composer Adrian Crowley, and Kevin Murphy (cello) Slow Moving Clouds. Following this, as part of the Festival’s new international programme of exchange, the event will travel to HOME, the contemporary arts centre in Manchester, for a similar performance on March 18th. This unique cine-concert event is supported by Culture Ireland as part of GB18: Promoting Irish Arts in Britain.

Susan Kirby, St. Patrick’s Festival CEO said “Our theme for Festival 2018 is Home and it has inspired our artistic programme of over 30 events. Irishman Rex Ingram was once described as the world’s greatest director so we’re delighted to be welcoming him home per se by presenting this screening of his wonderful classic The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, which will be made more special by the live performance of the new score which Matthew and Barry have created.”

Other highlights from the programme include Kormac: Equivalent Exchange at Vicar Street on Sunday March 18th, a premier collaborative concert with DJ, producer and composer Kormac, alongside the Irish Chamber Orchestra, Kormac’s Big Band and an array of 30 musicians and artists, including ArtSoul singer/songwriter Loah, famed composer and conductor Eímear Noone and others; Ireland In Full Colour with the #IAmIrish Project at the National Museum of Ireland, Collins Barracks on March 19th which will address the diversity of Irish identity and how we can challenge perceptions of what it looks like to be Irish through storytelling, discussion and performance; and firm highlight the Festival Parade will see community groups and pageant companies from across Ireland weave their way through the heart of the capital city in a flourish of colour and flair from noon on March 17th.

Join the conversation online at #stpatricksfest,, or YouTube/stpatricksfestvideos

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For further information contact Nigel Goggin or Sarah Corkery at Conway Communications. Tel 087 604 1161 / 087 783 4162 / 01 661 9728


St. Patrick’s Festival’s principal funders are Fáilte Ireland, Dublin City Council and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. Its aim is to develop a major annual international festival around the national holiday over which the Irish people can stand proud. The first St. Patrick’s Festival was held over one day, and night, on March 17th 1996. Preparation used to take five months, but with its subsequent growth, it now takes 18 months to plan for Ireland’s biggest annual celebration.

Over 105,000 out-of-state visitors attended the Festival in 2016, spending an average of 8.8 days in Ireland, and 6.5 days in Dublin. During the 2015 Festival, out-of-state visitors generated an estimated total expenditure of €73m while in Ireland, including expenditure of €51.3m while in Dublin, and circa €22m which was spent in the rest of Ireland. (Independent research conducted in 2015 & 2016 by Behaviour and Attitudes on behalf of Fáilte Ireland.)

Why was it started? 

• To offer a national festival that ranks as one of the greatest celebrations in the world
• To create energy and excitement throughout Ireland via innovation, creativity and grassroots involvement, and marketing activity
• To provide the opportunity and motivation for people of Irish descent (and those who sometimes wish they were Irish) to attend and join in the imaginative and expressive celebrations
• To project, internationally, an accurate image of Ireland as a creative, professional and sophisticated country with wide appeal.


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