One of Ireland’s finest group of balladeers, The Kilkennys, are this week performing in Europe where they will fly the black and amber at Irish cultural festivals in Switzerland and the Czech Republic.
Bearing gifts from Mayor Malcolm Noonan that are symbolic of the Marble City, the band will meet with Irish Ambassadors and the Mayor of Ostrava with the intention of putting Kilkenny into the minds of potential visitors and to promote Irish music in Europe.
Following the success of The Kilkennys performance at last years Irish festival in Ostrava, Czech Republic, where the band had over 4,000 Czech people singing Irish songs, the group will this year headline the event. They will also do a separate performance for the business community in Ostrava, civic dignitaries and the Mayor of the city.
A send off hosted by Mayor Malcolm Noonan at City Hall on Monday saw the band receive a copy of the Kilkenny City Charter, a DVD celebrating Kilkennys 400th Anniversary as a city and an information pack promoting Kilkenny as a tourist and business destination.
Joined by Councillor Andrew McGuinness who booked the festival slot for the band, they will present the gifts along with copies of their album and DVD ‘Meet The Kilkennys’ to the Mayor of Ostrava.
The band also performed live on Ireland AM on TV3 for a special St Patrick’s week show yesterday (Tuesday) and then played to a full house at the DTwo Bar in Dublin’s Harcourt Hotel. They play Basel, Switzerland on St Patrick’s Day and then fly to Czech Republic for three shows there. On their return to Ireland they will perform on Bandwagon TV and continue with their Irish dates all over the country.
“Performing at the festival last year was a fantastic experience and great to see traditional Irish music going down so well with a foreign audience. Czech people are now buying our album and DVD online and some even turned up at one of our shows in Kilkenny during the year. We are looking forward to returning to Ostrava and making a debut in Switzerland,” said David Cashin of The Kilkennys.
“I’m delighted that the band are the main feature of the festival this year as they are a fantastic group and their name alone is an advertisement for Kilkenny. The Kilkennys play in various countries all over the world every year and we should be taking advantage of that and using it to promote our city abroad. They really are great ambassadors,” said Cllr Andrew McGuinness.
Mayor Malcolm Noonan said, “The band are great ambassadors to Kilkenny representing us so well in name and in song and I wish them well on their tour.”