Celtic Band Festival launches in Limerick

  • Celtic Horizons Launch
Cllr. Olivia O’Sullivan alongside festival Director Keith Kelly and members of the Vikings Drum Corps from Tallaght, Dublin, at the launch of the Celtic Band Festival. (Pic: Orla McLaughlin/ilovelimerick)

The Celtic Band Festival welcomes bands, musicians, and visitors from around Ireland and the world to a new marching and concert band summer festival in Limerick. Bands of all shapes, sizes, ages, and abilities will find a warm welcome and events and competitions to suit. Launching in People's Park on Wednesday (July 3, 2019) this festival aims to put Ireland on the international stage for marching and concert band activity.

Among the attendees was Cllr Olivia O’Sullivan. Olivia expressed her excitement saying, “It is fantastic to see this launch here this evening. It is a very exciting festival for Limerick and I know Limerick City and County Council and the Mayor’s Office are delighted that it is happening here in Limerick. It is very exciting and I think it is just the start of something very special.”

Keith Kelly, Festival Director said, “We’re really hoping to grow the event and make it one of the leading festivals in Limerick. For 2020 we’ve had interest from the USA, Brazil, Columbia, Germany, the UK, Sweden, and Malaysia.” This year, around 10 Irish bands will attend, as well as 2 bands from Canada.

The Celtic Horizon Band Festival is a three-day weekend festival with a great selection of free performances, competitions and workshops. Some of the world’s greatest music and marching educators will be present throughout the festival to give valuable advice and feedback as well as judging the competitions. The competitions will run in different locations across Limerick City and at the University of Limerick.

These competitions include field shows, concerts and even a parade which will be winding through the campus of the University of Limerick and across the famous UL bridge where the bands will cross from County Limerick to County Clare and back again. Limerick City will play host to SoundSport, where Bands of all shapes, sizes, ages, and abilities will perform for audiences in Peoples Park on July 27th from 6pm to 8pm. Energy and entertainment are encouraged and the audience will play a part in deciding the award winners.

The event team have committed to the festival for the next three years and hope to bid for a world championship in Limerick in 2022 or 2023.

The festival is being organised by the Irish Marching Band Association. This unique summer festival will take place from Friday 26th July to Sunday 28th July with events happening all day across Limerick. For further information and the full schedule, you can visit www.celticbandfest.com or contact Keith Kelly, festival director at director@celticbandfest.com.

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