The weekend’s events: Tributes and trad with French cuisine on top

From traditional music to West End stars and a tribute to a legendary guitarist — there’s an eclectic mix of music events and festivals for all tastes this weekend — with a French food festival thrown in for good measure.

There are only a handful of tickets left for the Cork Youth Orchestra’s West End Comes to Cork weekend concerts in City Hall.

West End stars Sofia Escobar, the current Christine in Phantom of the Opera; Linzi Hateley, the current Madame Thénardier in Les Miserables; Michael McCarthy, who plays Javert in Les Miserables; and Mike Sterling, who has appeared over 1,000 times as the Phantom in Phantom of the Opera, will perform with the young members of the orchestra on Saturday and Sunday.

French native and owner of On the Pig’s Back, Isabelle Sheridan, will host her second Cork French Food and Wine Festival at St Patrick’s Woolen Mills in Douglas.

It opened last night with a French food banquet, and continues across the weekend with a mix of paid-for evening dining events, and free daytime sampling of the best of french cuisine, as well as a French food trail through some city restaurants. Full details from

In West Cork, the Baltimore Fiddle Fair also kicked off last night.

It features legendary Scottish band Capercaille, making their only Irish appearance of a 30th anniversary tour; US genius Casey Driessen performing the Irish premiere of The Casey Driessen Singularity; fiddler Bruce Molsky from New York; young creole/cajun sensation Cedric Watson; Scandinavian trio The Nordic Fiddler’s Bloc; and Cork native Una Palliser with Slovenian accordionist Marco Hatlak. Top Irish acts include supergroup The Teetotallers, featuring Martin Hayes, Kevin Crawford, John Doyle, and Colm Mac Con Iomaire, a member of The Frames and The Swell Season.

Full details on

In Clonakilty, De Barra’s presents a three-night tribute to Noel Redding, the legendary musician and former Jimi Hendrix Experience bassist, who passed away 10 years ago tomorrow.

Tonight at 8pm and tomorrow night and Sunday night from 9pm, many of Noel’s old friends will gather as The Noel Redding Experience to play his music, with support each evening.

Expect music and stories regarding Noel’s ’60s experiences, his almost three decades living in Ardfield, and the occasions when friends such as David Bowie and Paul McCartney dropped in to pay a visit, as immortalised on the walls of De Barra’s.

The Muskerry gaeltacht of Bally-vourney will, for the first time, host the Cork Fleadh Cheoil across the weekend, welcoming hundreds of trad musicians for music, song, dance, and storytelling competitions, as well as street sessions. Two qualifiers from each competition will go to represent Cork in the Munster Fleadh Cheoil in the University of Limerick in July.

Finally, Mary Byrne will open her gardens in Glounthaune to the public between 2pm and 6pm on Sunday to raise funds for St Patrick’s Hospital and Marymount Hospice in Curraheen.


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