I have a particular grá for traditional and folk music. My children play the harp, the mandolin, and the button accordion, and during my student days I used to busk on Grafton Street. I really appreciate the value, love and importance of our traditional music. In fact, in 20 years teaching as a secondary school music teacher, I always loved when it came to the traditional Irish music section of the Leaving Cert and Junior Cert curriculum, probably spending longer than I should have on the subject!

Tradfest is always a date I look forward to in the calendar. It consistently hosts world-class performers and is a great opportunity to discover new and emerging talented musicians. This year will be no different. I must commend the festival organisers who have re-imagined Tradfest in 2020 due to public health restrictions.

The festival opening will now take place on Tuesday, December 29th on RTÉ Television. This will feature Irish musicians playing against the backdrop of some of our most iconic locations from the Cliffs of Moher, to Trim Castle, right back to Tradfest’s home in Temple Bar, Dublin. This televised event will be followed by a series of live streamed ticketed concerts in January 2021.

Tradfest is a valuable showcase of our authentic Irish culture. Please join me in supporting it this year.