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St. Patrick’s Festival presents

A Treasury of Irish Voices: Dave Fanning interviews broadcaster Brendan Balfe

The social, cultural and artistic heritage of a country can be heard in its voices.

A Treasury of Irish Voices is a collection of historic recordings of our writers, poets, performers and public figures that captures the soul and spirit of Ireland.

Broadcaster and historian, Brendan Balfe in conversation with his radio colleague, Dave Fanning, introduces an energetic 90-minute mix of fascinating recordings that range from the serious to the witty, the charming to the unfamiliar. In between, with the light touch familiar from his radio broadcasts, Brendan gives the background to the pieces and recalls insights and anecdotes connected to them.

So, you will hear the voices of W B Yeats, Sean O’Casey, George Bernard Shaw and Patrick Kavanagh, as well as Margaret Burke Sheridan, Bing Crosby, John McCormack and Micheál MacLiammóir. More recent voices include Niall Tóibín, Maureen Potter, Seamus Heaney, Luke Kelly, Gay Byrne and U2. There are many more voices, including some surprises.

Aimed at both local and visitor audiences, A Treasury of Irish Voices will be an enthralling start to the St Patrick's Festival 2020.

Brendan Balfe

Has been in Irish broadcasting since 1964. He is renowned for his music and comedy programmes, but particularly for a programme genre that he has made his own-the blending together of music and speech to tell a story. He has presented and produced many programmes based on social and cultural history and the highly acclaimed recent series The Irish Voice prompted the Irish Independent to dub him ‘A National Treasure’.

Dave Fanning

Was one of the first DJs on RTÉ Radio 2 (now 2 FM). He was particularly noted for his promotion of contemporary music and for the encouragement new Irish acts, notably U2. He is equally well regarded as a film critic and writer. He is the last of the original signings to still broadcast on 2FM.