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Kíla and Hothouse Flowers frontmen return to Westport

Going Out

JOINING FORCESRónán Ó Snodaigh and Liam Ó Maonlaí unite for ISPCC fundraising concert in the Knockranny House Hotel.

Laura Golden

After the success of their concert in the Knockranny House Hotel in 2017, Liam Ó Maonlaí of The Hothouse Flowers and Rónán Ó Snodaigh of Kíla will be returning to Westport to stage another concert on Thursday, February 28. The event is part of a Seachtain na Gaeilge initiative and facilitated by Gaelscoil na Cruaiche staff and parents.
Both Ó Maonlaí and Ó Snodaigh are renowned Irish speakers with a long history of musical accomplishments to their credit in both Irish and English.
Ó Snodaigh says of his aspirations: “I like to mix melodies with rhythms that uplift them and I try to write words in my Irish and English vernacular that are catchy but thought provoking. I like mixing the simple and sophisticated, the old and new, the foreign and indigenous, the sad and happy in music and songs. It’s for this duality I search.”
This search has taken him on a geographical mission. From Borneo to Italy, Rónán has introduced people to Irish percussion and language, despite barriers in culture and language. Maybe it’s this quality that makes his music a series of charming contradictions; complex in its simplicity, intrinsically Irish yet borderless, part of a new world of music that pledges no allegiance to anything other than the beauty of sound.
That beauty of sound is something that occupies Ó Maonlaí’s compositions too. Like Rónán, Liam grew up in an environment that nourished all that was good about Gaeilge. His artistic soul also sought to intertwine various linguistic strands, at times occupying the charts in the New Ireland of the Hothouse Flowers, while the pull of the guttural growl of sean nós was never far from his mind, or his mouth. Part innovator, part musical gypsy, he walks the line between modern and traditional. Perhaps an idyll we all wish to inhabit at times.

Workshops and concert
While in Westport, the musicians will be running workshops with the children at Gaelscoil na Cruaiche in advance of their concert, assisted by the musical staff at the school.  They will be working on instrumental pieces of composition and Irish songs.
Then on Thursday, February 28, in Knockranny House Hotel Westport, the pair will perform together in a public concert, to which all are welcome. The concert starts at 7pm. Tickets are €10 per adult, €5 for 12-18 year olds, while accompanied younger children are welcome in for free. So come along and enjoy the music, songs and dance. Fáilte roimh chách!

For more information, contact Gaelscoil na Cruaiche on 098 28121. Tickets are available from Berry’s Stationery Shop, The Fairgreen, or Mocha Beans, Westpoint Shopping Centre, Westport.