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Michigan Irish Music Festival | Arts & Culture

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Michigan Irish Music Festival
Michigan Irish Music Festival

The 2011 Michigan Irish Music Festival will showcase its Irish roots by featuring headline entertainment from Ireland. “Evidence of our festival’s prominence in the Irish Festival realm are performances by three incredible bands coming to us directly from Ireland. Slide IE, Beoga, and Goitse represent the best that Ireland has to offer in contemporary Irish folk music.

Slide IE has quickly become a festival favorite. This rollicking band’s origins date back to Ireland in 1999, when they performed in various pubs for a music festival in Bandon County, Cork. The group’s intoxicating music easily won over the crowds, which demanded more of their unique and colorful sound.  Creating the largest buzz in Celtic music festivals in recent years, Slide IE is one of the most explosive traditional Irish bands to come out of Ireland since the Chieftains. The festival is pleased to welcome them back for their third appearance.

Direct from County Antrim, in the north of Ireland, Beoga (Irish word for “lively) has become one of the most popular and influential ensembles in modern Irish music. The Wall Street Journal described Beoga as “riveting… the best traditional band to emerge from Ireland this century.” Individually talented and collectively inspired, their music lies firmly within Irish tradition with a huge dose of fun.

Goitse (pronounced gwi-cha) is a group of alumni from the University of Limerick’s prestigious Irish World Music Academy. These young musicians mix modern rhythms and traditional melodies to create their own original sound. Individually the members of Goitse are leaders in their field, and together they have the spark to make traditional music explode.

Along with the Irish headliners, the Festival line-up includes Scythian, Old Blind Dogs, Makem & Spain Brothers, Seamus Kennedy, Blackthorn, The Kreellers, Kennedy’s Kitchen, Lawrence Nugent, An Dro, and more.

Presented by Mercy Health Partners, the Michigan Irish Music Festival returns to Heritage Landing in downtown Muskegon September 16-18th, with a weekend of live music, activities, and culture.  The Festival features Irish & Celtic music on three covered stages. In addition to continuous live music, the Celtic Kitchen and Bob and Bernie’s Pub serve up authentic Irish food and beverages including Irish Fest Stout, Irish Cream, and Budweiser products. Other festival activities include the Irish Marketplace, children’s activities, a cultural center, and a session tent.  A popular highlight on Saturday is the Michigan FEIS, an Irish dance competition. Sunday morning, a Catholic Mass will be held at 9 am followed by a traditional Irish breakfast.

The festival offers an Early-In Free promotion on Friday only from 5 – 6 pm sponsored by Family Financial Credit Union. Other major sponsors of the Festival include Bob & Bernie’s Pub, Waddell & Reed and Budweiser. General admission tickets for the festival are $8 on Friday (5-11 pm), $15 on Saturday (11 am – 11 pm) and $10 on Sunday (8:30 am – 6 pm).  For additional information, tickets, and a complete entertainment schedule, visit www.michiganirish.org.

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