1916 - visionaries and their words: Press kitt

"startlingly original" -fROOTS

The critically acclaimed Show, Visionaries and their Words, continues its successful Irish tour in March and April 2017 in Dundalk, Dublin, Cork and Belfast. Created by renowned sean- nós singer, composer and adventurer, Lorcán Mac Mathúna, this Show is a new musical rendering of the words of Plunkett, Connolly, Ceannt and Pearse.

31st March 8pm :  Dundalk -An Táin Arts Centre,

2nd April 5pm :  Dublin -Sean O’Casey Theatre, East Wall, (Five Lamps Arts Festival)

14th April 8pm : Cork  Triskel Christchurch.

29th April 8pm : Belfast Culturlann Mac Adam O Fiaich.

A Century on from a remarkable revolution of visionaries and poets, VISIONARIES reveals the artistic brilliance and vision in the writings of four leaders of the Easter Rising; Patrick Pearse, James Connolly, Eamonn Ceannt, and Joseph Plunkett.

The first Show of 2017 was staged in Wexford and was described by the Wexford Echo as “a truly tantalising melange of music, songs and readings based on the writings of Pearse, Plunkett, Connolly and Ceannt and those texts proved not only how concerned they were about culture, art and education but they expressed their views with a vivacity and articulation rare in today’s political landscape”

Download a high res image from Flickr

1916 Visionaries and Their Words

From the pens of Pearse, Connolly, and Plunkett; the acclaimed ART:2016 sponsored Visionaries echoes the deep interest in music, culture, and art, held by Ireland’s most inspired cultural and political leaders on its road to independence.

A different side of the architects of The Rising is revealed in visionaries; a side with gives a most intriguing insight into their most intimate thoughts.

Visionaries celebrates, the creative genius; the cultural achievements and vision of the leaders of the rising through newly composed settings of their poetry; powerful spoken words extracts of their writings; and beautifully animated projected archive imagery. A uniquely creative interpretation of their words, It is a feast for the visual and aural senses.

In Visionaries the character of these four signatories shines through in the music. Lorcán Mac Mathúna, draws from their poetry to reflect the musical influence that touched on their lives, and uncovers the Sean-Nós of Pearse, the perfect meter of Plunkett, and the balladry of Connolly.

This concert features male, female, and children's voices to commemorate the aspirations of The Easter Proclamation and celebrate the part played by the people of Ireland in the most momentous event of modern Irish history.

Lorcán Mac Mathúna (voice)
Íde Nic Mhathúna (voice and concertina);
Martin Tourish (accordion),
Daire Bracken (fiddle, guitar),
Eamonn Galdubh (uillean pipes, saxophone, flute, bodhrán);
Elaine O’Dea (spoken word)

Remarkable, there is no other word to describe this exceptional evening” –Bretagne Presse

"There's a remarkeable empathy evident in the musical settings of the poetry. Voices and fiddles rise and soar skywards in Joseph Plunkett's The Cloud... startlingly original" -fROOTS

The mood ranges from the atmospheric idealism and love poetry of Joseph Plunkett through James Connolly’s literal demand for the earth of Ireland, Éamonn Ceannt’s piping legacy and Pearse’s brooding, inspirational rallying calls -The Living Tradition

Show promo



Lorcán Mac Mathúna

Lorcán Mac Mathúna is a singer, writer, and arranger whose work confounds categorisation. Working extensively in the realm of improvised music, with many stylistic inspiration derived of sean-nós techniques and philosophy, his music is tonally rich, nuanced, and dynamic. He has specialised in compositions based on Old-Irish texts, such as An Táin and the Battle of Clontarf and has produced 4 major cycles from ancient Irish texts as well as a collaboration with Daire Bracken which created new tune typologies from Ancient Irish meters.


Martin Tourish PhD

Accordionist, Composer, and Producer Martin Tourish was named as being in the top 3 piano accordionists in Irish music in The Rough Guide to Ireland, he has brought his instrument to a new level by being the first piano accordionist to win TG4's prestigious "Young Musician of the Year" in 2008.

Martin holds a PhD and plays with numerous bands including Altan.


Íde Nic Mhathúna

Íde is a twelve time all-Ireland singing champion, and a concertina player. She has performed and toured with many bands and Comhaltas productions throughout Europe and has collaborated with Ireland's top folk artists. She was the featured voice on Céili Dé Hyms of Passion and Resurrection, which reached No.1 in the Irish independent charts in Easter 2014. She is a former winner of the Corn Mháire Nic Dhonnachadha at An tOireachtas, the Irish language festival and premier Sean-Nós competition platform. She has toured throughout Europe and has played and sang extensively, from Tanzania to Tampa. 


Daire Bracken

Daire is a composer, bi-lingual songwriter and fiddler. As a founding member of the successful bands Slide & Danú, Daire he has wowed audiences around the world with his exuberant creative playing and stage presence.

Hailing from a musical family close to the pulse of traditional music in Dublin, from a very young age he has learned from some of the country’s finest musicians. This musical curiosity’s exploratory style has intrigued listeners and brought about many musical collaborations; from electronica to jazz, sean-nós to modern.

Eamonn Galldubh

Uilleann Piper and composer Eamonn Galldubh has toured and recorded with artists including Clannad, Riverdance, Moya Brennan, Cara Dillon, Damien Dempsey, Ragus, Niamh ni Charra, Celtic Woman, Hazel O Connor, Rua, Druid Theatre and the RTE Concert Orchestra.


Elaine O'Dea

A graduate of The Gaiety School of Acting, Elaine O'Dea is the director of saor drama music school. Leading roles on stage include: Classic Stage Ireland’s “As You Like It” ; The Town Hall Theatre/Cork Opera House production of “Lieutenant of Inishmore”; Mikel Murfi’s “Falling out of love”; Galloglass’s production of “The Sanctuary Lamp”.



20/01/17 Wexford Arts Centre | Tickets

31/03/17, 8pm An Táin Arts Centre, Dundalk | Tickets

02/04/17 5pm Seán O Casey Theatre, East Wall, Dublin | Tickets

14/04/17 8pm Triskel Christchurch, Cork | Tickets

29/04/17 8pm Culturlann, Belfast | Tickets



30/01/16 Dublin TBtradfest
31/01/16 Dublin TBtradfest
02/02/16 Derry DITMF

11/08/16 Lorient France
Festival Interceltique
16/08/16 Ennis
Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann
30/09/16 Monoghan
Iontas Arts Centre

Album release gig in
Músaem an bPiarsach
St. Enda's Rathfarnham

15/10/16 ; 3:30pm



ART: 2016 is the Arts Council's programme as part of Ireland 2016It is a diverse and distinctive public showcase of Irish art which will be presented across Ireland and abroad throughout the year. Key programme strands include the Open Call National Project Awards, which feature cutting-edge, contemporary art events in dance, visual arts, poetry and music; the Next Generation Bursary Awards which highlight the work of eighteen rising stars of Irish art; and A Nation's Voice, an open-air, free concert at Collins Barrack on Easter Sunday, featuring new choral and orchestral work by Shaun Davey and Paul Muldoon, and the voices of a 1,100-strong choir. The programme also includes a selection of national touring productions.

ART: 2016 is supported by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht through its Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme and is created with a range of partners; local, national and international