- 01 Feb 23
"This special celebration gives us an opportunity to reflect on the vital role that Irish women have played in building, sustaining and inspiring our nation, and in so doing, showcasing women’s voices in our cultural and creative expression," says Minister Martin.
The full line-up for Nothing Compares: A Celebration of Irish Women Artists has been completed, with Imelda May, Eleanor McEvoy, Tolu Makay, Susan O’Neill, Mary Stokes, Megan O’Neill, Gemma Dunleavy, Laura Murphy of Herstory, KK Lewis and DJ Mona Lxsa (founder of gxrlcode) among the artists who will take part in a special series of events on Brigid’s Day (February 1st).
Run by Hot Press magazine in association with Kildare County Council, Nothing Compares: A Celebration of Irish Women Artists is part of the Brigid 1500 programme. It is also supported by Kildare Village. The evening will be MC’d by Trishauna Archer, who has presented shows on Beat FM and FM104, and is a regular panellist on RTÉ’s television’s Today Show.
Nothing Compares: A Celebration of Irish Women Artists will take place in the centre of Naas, Co. Kildare, which will be specially lit in a celebratory style for the occasion. The main concert will take place in the Moat Theatre, Naas, kicking off at 8pm and will be attended by the First Woman, Sabina Higgins, wife of the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins. Sabina will do a reading as part of the concert.
This year sees the establishment of a new national public holiday in honour of Brigid, a figure revered in pagan and Christian traditions alike, with schools and businesses closing down on Monday, February 6th. Brigid’s Day is celebrated on February 1st each year. The event has been welcomed by the Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin.
“I send my best wishes to the organisers, performers and all attending the wonderful concert organised by Hot Press, in association with Kildare County Council,” Minister Catherine Martin said. "This special celebration gives us an opportunity to reflect on the vital role that Irish women have played in building, sustaining and inspiring our nation, and in so doing, showcasing women’s voices in our cultural and creative expression. In tandem with this wonderful event, my Department with the National Cultural Institutions, Creative Ireland and local authorities, are showcasing an inspiring programme of cultural events this weekend in locations around the country, marking the inaugural bank holiday for Imbolc/St. Brigid’s day. More information on these events is available on gov.ie.”
Dublin-born star Imelda May has been commissioned by Hot Press to write a poem to celebrate the occasion of the creation of Brigid’s Day as a national holiday. Imelda will perform her original spoken word piece for the first time at what promises to be an extraordinary evening celebrating women’s creativity in Naas. Imelda's debut book of poetry, A Lick and a Promise, was published to widespread acclaim in October 2021.
Tickets are €10, with sales revenue going to Teach Tearmainn, the Kildare-based charity dedicated to ending domestic violence. Tickets are sold out.
There will also be a special showing of Nothing Compares, the critically lauded documentary about Sinead O’Connor, directed by Belfast-born Kathryn Ferguson, in St. David’s Church, Naas (just across the road from the Moat Theatre). Kathryn Ferguson will participate in a Q&A by live link, conducted by Hot Press film editor Roe McDermott and there will be a special performance of Sinead O’Connor songs by the rising Kildare singer-songwriter Megan O’Neill and blues legend Mary Stokes (both of whom will also appear in the Moat Theatre). Tickets for the screening, which starts at 7pm, were available, by application, from Hot Press.
There will be a pop-up food market in The Potato Market, bringing the centre of the historic town of Naas to brilliant life for what is a truly historic moment in Irish life. Rising Dublin-based pop-soul star KK Lewis – who first made her name on the busking scene in the capital – will do a pop-up performance in The Potato Market.
This event forms part of the programme for Brigid 1500 taking place across the county of Kildare over the bank holiday period. The full calendar of events can be viewed at www.brigid1500.ie
The decision to make a national holiday of Brigid’s Day is a significant moment for Irish feminism, involving a recognition of the vital importance of equality and gender balance in public affairs.
"The equality agenda has always been of central importance to Hot Press,” co-founder of the magazine Máirín Sheehy says, “and so we see the new Public Holiday as the ideal opportunity to celebrate the extraordinary creativity and artistry of women in Ireland. We are really looking forward to it.”
Cathaoirleach of the County of Kildare Councillor Fintan Brett commented, “Brigid 1500 is a great opportunity for County Kildare and Ireland. It gives us an opportunity to celebrate and commemorate all the different facets of St. Brigid including her love of nature and biodiversity, her affiliation with agriculture and food, her love of the arts and culture, her passion for peace and justice for all, and her lasting links to migration.”
Nothing Compares: A Celebration of Irish Women Artists will be a genre-spanning celebration of the extraordinary creativity of Irish women.
Held in the busy Kildare town of Naas, the event will highlight the power, the quality and the diversity of musical and artistic genius shared by Ireland’s leading female performers – women who can stand proudly alongside the world’s greatest musical, songwriting and spoken word talents.
Nothing Compares: A Celebration of Irish Women Artists is run by Hot Press, in association with Kildare County Council. Nothing Compares is also supported by Kildare Village.
- Lifestyle & Sports
- 23 Jan 24