Traditional Irish music will cover Boyle County

Published 3:35 pm Monday, April 10, 2023


A group of Danville musicians will travel to Northern Ireland in late October to play in schools, restaurants, bars, churches, public spaces, auditoriums, and town halls. In early November a group of Irish musicians selected by the Mid & East Antrim Council, home of Carrickfergus, will spend a week in Danville sharing Irish traditional Irish music in many venues throughout Boyle County.

The Danville Sister Cities Commission will select local musicians who specialize in Appalachian, country, rock & roll, rhythm & blues, jazz, and/or gospel music.

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After Danville became officially “twinned” with Carrickfergus in 2008, the first official visitors were two Irish horn-players who performed with the Advocate Brass Band during the Great American Brass Band Festival. Since that time more than 500 Danvillians have been welcomed in Northern Ireland during three SC tours and exchanges of “cultural ambassadors,” artists, sports teams, and students. Last summer seven local high-school students spent nine days living in the Irish homes of their exchange partners before bringing their counterparts to spend nine days in their Danville homes.

The fourth SC group tour of Ireland, for April 2024, will be announced in early July. The second high–school exchange, for June 2024, will be announced this May, with applications due by September 1st.

The Danville SC Commission and the Irish Council will provide round-trip airfare for the musicians they select. Lodging, some meals, transportation, and outings will be provided by the host cities.

Musicians who wish to apply should send a one-page letter addressed to Sister Cities, 60 Mapletree Place, Danville KY 40422, by April 30th.  The letter should briefly indicate their interest in the exchange, their musical background, the kind of music they play, and their willingness to perform both individually and with others who will be selected.

The SC selection committee will be comprised of both SC commissioners and outsiders. It will then invite finalists to audition for 10-15 minutes in Danville High School’s Gravely Hall. The Commission will announce winners by mid-June.