Return of the uke

Mersey Belles

Mersey Belles

The Galway Uke Fest is back — Showcasing unique and exciting talent from the Irish ukulele scene, the festival will run from May 20 to May 22.

This three-day programme of diverse events includes street spectacles, competitions, a range of workshops for all levels and larger performances taking place across the Latin Quarter, St Nicholas’ Church and Nun’s Island Theatre.

This year's programme boasts a wide variety of ukulele players, from local groups to international artists. The line-up varies from casual, local and fun experiences, to some of the hottest ukulele performers from the U.K.

The festival will officially open with the ‘Ukulele Ceilidh’ on Friday May 20, at 3.30pm where ukulele players of all levels are invited to drop in to the Festival Club at The Dew Drop Inn to kickstart the festivities.

There will be two evening performances taking place at An Taibhdhearc on that Friday and St Nicholas’ Church on that Saturday evening (8pm ), which boasts performances from local beloved acts and internationally renowned ukulele performers.

Friday (20th May, 8pm ) boasts a line up of Marc Gallagher and Mersey Belles. Ukulele chanteuses, the Mersey Belles channel a retro vibe in pursuit of modern-day fun. Laura Perkins (Nancy ) and Lindsey Stainthorpe (Pearl ) are a duo who have been wooing audiences for years with their retro style, sensational harmonies and ukulele arrangements.

With three solo albums under his belt, Marc Gallagher’s return to Galway Ukulele Festival boasts two highly anticipated workshops "Musical Multitasking" and “Finger Pickin’ Good”.

Having previously played at Ukulele Festival of Great Britain, Berlin Ukulele Festival and Munich Ukulele Festival, Marc is sure to be a highlight of the festival. Saturday (21st May, 8pm ) will see two events at St. Nicholas’ Church.

Fun-filled fest

Local children’s group from St. Patrick’s School and Dublin’s Rathfarnam Ukulele Group (RUGS ) will take to the stage at 5.30pm for a casual but fun-filled afternoon. Performances from the local group Galway Ukers and Opera-lele at St. Nicholas’ Church kicks off at 8pm.

The award winning Opera-Lele, have rapidly established themselves as one of the most innovative and exciting new acts in the world. Opera-Lele is a crossover act specialising in singing music from Opera and Musical Theatre accompanied by the emotionally powerful yet understanding twang of the ukulele.

Street spectacles at the festival will see a return of the “Flashmob” which went viral last year on facebook with over 300,000 views. The ‘Big Busk’ will also see the best of Galway’s Ukulele group take to the streets over the weekend.

‘The Golden Uke’ (3pm, Sat, 21st May, Busker Brownes ) is an open mic style event which will see artists and groups from around the country battle it out for a Golden Uke and fun surprises. Workshops at the festival will cater to all levels, from a beginner’s guide’ hosted by Festival Director Gerry Savage, to ‘Singing with your Ukulele’’ by Mersey Belles and ‘Harmony Singing with Confidence’ with Opera-Lele.

The Festival Hub and Club will be based in the Dew Drop Inn for the weekend. So join us for Year Three of the Galway Uke Fest. Úcailéilímid!

For the full Festival line-up and online ticket sales check


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