Boyle Arts Festival

Boyle Arts Festival brochure launched

The programme for the 29th annual Boyle Arts Festival was launched last week at Lough Key Boats, in the beautiful Lough Key Forest Park.

The nationally renowned Festival will be officially opened by Brent Pope on Thursday July 19th and a specially commissioned musical piece, composed by Siobhán Cleary will be performed by John Carty and Patsy Hanly.  The programme is an exciting mix, containing over fifty events, including visual arts, music, drama, film, comedy, workshops, children’s events, storytelling, spoken word and much more! The Festival will continue until Sat. July 28th.

(By Brendan McGee)

The Boyle Arts Festival office, situated beside Marian’s on Bridge Street, will be open at 11am today, Monday July 9th. Details and tickets for all the events will be available from here but you can pick up a programme in local businesses now. Tickets for a selection of events are now available to purchase in advance through our website

Some of the names to watch out for this year include the highly acclaimed HamsandwicH, who will kick off the live gig programme with an appearance in The Storehouse on July 20th. The band was the first to play in this venue, when it opened during BAF 2011.

Luka Bloom will make a welcome return to Boyle for a very special performance in the Church of Ireland, on July 23rd.

The Don Baker & Rob Strong Band will take over the Storehouse on July 21st and Wyvern Lingo, will bring sensual, beat driven R&B flavoured pop by three girls with young hearts but witchy old souls, to The Storehouse on July 22nd.

Boyle Arts Festival veterans, The Men Who Knew Too Much will take up their usual Sunday afternoon residency in Daly’s on July 22nd and Dublin based Mongrel State will rip it up with their powerful sound, raw Rock ‘n’ Roll and stomping Rockabilly on July 23rd.

‘Join Me In the Pines’ is the moniker for Bell X1 guitarist Dave Geraghty, who will perform at an intimate late night concert in King House on July 24th. Rooted in the Rumba; Ikarumba’s music crosses many cultural boundaries frequently fusing Catalan, Mexican, Spanish, African, Indian and Celtic as well as Jazz. Check them out in Clarke’s Bar on July 25th. Local band The Stringwreckers are back together for a gig in the Storehouse on July 27th. Expect a night of blistering, high volume ‘Wreck & Roll’ and maybe a few surprises!

In the Classical genre, BAF are delighted to welcome soprano, Celine Byrne. Celine will be accompanied by Ailbhe McDonagh on piano and cello, with Lynda O’Connor on violin. The concert will take place in the Church of Ireland on July 26th. New Airs is a classical fusion group combining classical strings with rock/folk percussion and synthesised electronics. Their production is directed by Irish composer, arranger and producer Glen Austin and will be presented in King House on July 21st.

Don’t miss The Harlequin Opera Company, who will present an Opera Gala featuring some well loved pieces in Boyle Abbey on July 22nd. Please note that tickets for this event will only be available from the ticket office or by booking online. Violinist Niamh Crowley will bring the classical programme to a close in the Church of Ireland, on July 28th.

Two services in St. Joseph’s Church will also feature music for BAF 2018, one by the recently formed St. Joseph’s Church Choir on July 22nd and another by the Boyle Folk Group on July 21st.

The always popular King House lunchtime concert programme will include performances by the Incantato String Quartet, saxophonist Robert Finegan, pianists Luke Lally Maguire, Jude McCann, Sidi Bao and Gerry Yang, soprano Catherine Donnelly, guitar and harp duo Amala, and of course local vocalist Bernadine Casserly who will be accompanied by Anne Kielty in the Church of Ireland, on July 28th.

Spoken word events will include another ‘In Conversation’ event conducted by RTÉ News journalist and author, Carole Coleman in King House on July 26th. This year, Carole’s guest is RTÉ News northern editor, Tommie Gorman. (Please note change of date and venue from that listed in our printed programme)

‘An Evening with Brent Pope’ will see the popular Rugby pundit interviewed by Benny O’Brien in King House on July 20th. Also, look out for readings and talks by author Kevin Barry on July 27th, a book launch by authors Louise G. Cole and Jane Clark on July 26th and readings by The Moylurg Writers on July 22nd. Local historian, Oliver Fallon will discuss 1918 and the end of the Great War on July 25th while ‘A Naggin of Knowledge’ is a fun event that will see three eminent scientists discuss a myriad of scientific discoveries, in the informal setting of Mattimoe’s bar on July 24th.

If you’re looking for traditional music, James Carty, Francis Gaffney and Brian McGrath will kick off the Trad sessions with a lunchtime concert in King House on July 20th and Sean Keane will perform in the Church of Ireland, later the same evening. We are delighted to have Trad supergroup Altan with us this year and they will perform in the Church of Ireland on July 24th. The Boyle Singers will be joined by

Tim Dennehy in Dodd’s bar on July 26th and Kieran Quinn, Seamie O’Dowd & Guests will bring the Trad. performances to a close, in the Church of Ireland on July 27th.

There’s plenty of drama this year too. Beezneez Theatre Group will present ‘Callaghan’s Place’ in St. Joseph’s Hall on July 25th while Sean Leonard will present ‘Humanity Dick – A Tale of Beasts & Bullets’ in King House on July 28th. Don’t miss Shiva Theatre’s ‘Meet Me in the Gardens’ in the Pleasure Grounds on July 21st or Leonie McDonagh’s comedy & drama, ‘There’s All Sorts’, in King House on July 26th.

Children will have plenty to do at Boyle Arts Festival including Film and Puppet shows, Storytelling, Art & Craft workshops with Kate Wilson, Hullabaloo, Singskool and Baby Buddies. For a detailed listing of our workshops for adults, see our website and programme.

As always, the centrepiece of Boyle Arts Festival is the main Visual Exhibition. Once again curated by Paul McKenna and housed in the beautifully restored King House, the theme this year is ‘The Gathering’ featuring 140 of the finest artists in the country. Several other exhibitions, including the highly acclaimed Local Artists exhibition and the Boyle Camera Club expo will take place during the Festival. Details will be available in the programme

BAF 2018 will conclude on July 28th with a fantastic performance by Mundy, supported by local band The Martyrs, in The Storehouse.

The Boyle Arts Festival office, situated next door to Marian’s on Bridge Street, is open and will remain open every day, excluding Sundays until July 28th. Call in for more information, to pick up a programme or to purchase tickets. We accept all credit cards and tickets for a selection of events can also be booked online, through our website.

For health and safety reasons, please note that there are capacity limits at most of our venues and in the event of sold out performances, only ticket holders will be admitted.

For more information on Boyle Arts Festival 2018 please go to  or email [email protected]  Telephone 0719663085. Follow us on Facebook.

Boyle Arts Festival is supported by The Arts Council, Fáilte Ireland, Forás Éireann, Roscommon Co. Council, Local Businesses and Patrons.

Launch Photo: BAF Committee with Bernie Walsh of Lough Key Boats by Benny Morgan.



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