Milwaukee Irish Fest, the world’s largest celebration of Celtic music and culture, has announced this year's entertainment lineup.
Celebrating its 35th anniversary, Milwaukee Irish Fest is pulling out all the stops for this year’s festival, offering the widest selection of Irish and Celtic music to date. Taking place Aug. 13-16 along Milwaukee’s lakefront, the festival will honor tradition with some of the biggest and brightest stars, as well as previously undiscovered new artists.
"Thirty-five years in the making, we think this is our strongest lineup yet," Patrick Boyle, executive director of Milwaukee Irish Fest, said in a statement. "We look forward to shining the spotlight on acts that have influenced or been influenced by the growth and popularity of traditional Irish and Celtic music over the past few decades."
Entertainment highlights for the festival include:
Living Tradition Showcase
Milwaukee Irish Fest has been introducing American audiences to contemporary traditional music for the past 35 years. In keeping with that tradition, this year’s festival will feature the Living Tradition Showcase which will highlight Irish traditional music with festival favorites, as well as up-and-coming new artists.
Living Tradition Showcase performers include: Cherish the Ladies, Dallahan, Eileen Ivers and Immigrant Soul, Flashpoint, FullSet, Goitse, John Whelan, Liz Carroll, Lunasa, Moloney, Keane, and O’Connell, Morga, Pride of New York, Ross Ainslie and Jarlath Henderson, Socks in the Frying Pan, Ten Strings and a Goat Skin, Tim Edey and Brendan Power, and We Banjo 3.
New to Milwaukee Irish Fest
Scouring festivals and events all over the world, Milwaukee Irish Fest prides itself on discovering and presenting emerging artists. The festival is excited to welcome the following acts for the first time:
- Flashpoint (Dallas, TX) – Irish Traditional
- FullSet (Ireland) – Irish Traditional
- Joe Rooney (Ireland) - Comedian
- Kilkennys (Ireland) – Folk and Ballad Tradition
- Mórga (Ireland) – Irish Traditional
- Pride of New York (New York, NY) – Irish Traditional
- Ross and Jarlath (Scotland) – Irish Traditional
- Ten Strings and a Goat Skin (Canada) – Irish Traditional
- Tim Edey and Brendan Power (United Kingdom) – Irish Traditional
Folk and Ballad Tradition
Since 1981, Milwaukee Irish Fest has provided a national platform for folk and ballad performers. Continuing this tradition into the 35th year, the festival will welcome the following acts: Brigids Cross, The Makem & Spain Brothers, Tom Sweeney, The High Kings, The Kilkennys, Evans & Doherty, Moloney and Keane & O’Connell.
Although a relatively new musical genre, Milwaukee Irish Fest has featured American folk and crossover artists since day one. Americana-inspired artists this year include: We Banjo 3, Scythian and Eileen Ivers & Immigrant Soul.
Celtic and Folk Rock
Dating back to the mid-1980s, Milwaukee Irish Fest has been a pioneer in showcasing bands that put an electrifying spin on traditional Irish and Celtic music. Back to rock audiences again this year are: the Red Hot Chilli Pipers, Screaming Orphans, Gaelic Storm and The Elders.
Milwaukee Irish Fest will also welcome fan favorites, The Willis Clan, The Celtic Tenors and the Omagh Community Youth Choir, as well as over 25 local and regional bands, the Irish Fest Choir and Irish Fest School of Music.
Special shows will include:
- A Celebration of Irish Traditional Music featuring Cherish The Ladies and Friends.
- Americana Irish Style featuring We Banjo 3, Scythian, Eileen Ivers and Immigrant Soul.
- A Special Tribute to Tommy Makem featuring the Makem & Spain Brothers, Evans & Doherty and Tom Sweeney.
For more information, including performer bios, visit the festival's website.