‘Blue of the Shortest Night’ a live Midsummer concert broadcast, Wednesday 21st June

08 June 2017

“…leaders readily interchanging positions in music that demands emotional involvement”

Irish Independent [on Katherine Hunka, Ioana Petcu-Colan & Helena Wood]

“Doyle’s singing is coming from a deeper, more natural place…with a feeling for the blues learnt from Billie Holiday and the rare ability to improvise vocally…Her swinging quartet includes some of the best young players on the Dublin Scene.”

Irish Times [on the Aoife Doyle Band]

"The instrument mix works exceedingly well….this quartet truly celebrates the essence of their chosen name, Sonamus (“I play therefore I am”)."

Irish Times [on Sonamus]

"...the embodiment of the living tradition, and an Aisling Gheal, or bright vision for its future survival."

Irish Examiner [on Nell Ní Chróinín]


Join Music Network and RTÉ lyric fm live from Studio 1 on Wednesday 21st June, as The Blue of the Night presenter Carl Corcoran hosts a very special Midsummer concert featuring an eclectic line-up of classical, jazz and traditional music from 10pm. Featuring violinists Katherine Hunka, Ioana Petcu-Colan & Helena Wood, jazz/folk singer Aoife Doyle and her band, traditional and baroque quartet Sonamus and sean nós singer Nell Ní Chróinín. This concert is free but ticketed with limited access, maximum four tickets per person, advance booking essential, visit musicnetwork.ie for details. Making live music happen around the country, Music Network is funded by the Arts Council.

Katherine Hunka, Ioana Petcu-Colan & Helena Wood

Following the huge success of their recent Music Network tour, three Leaders and Associate Leaders of Ireland's most prestigious orchestras will perform together once more for this special event, with highlights from their specially curated programme. Katherine Hunka, leader of the Irish Chamber Orchestra since 2002, has collaborated with Murray Perahia, Joshua Bell, Nigel Kennedy and Anthony Marwood amongst others, while Ioana Petcu-Colan, Associate Leader of the Ulster Orchestra, has worked with artists as diverse as Martin Hayes, Arcade Fire, John Abercrombie and members of the Alban Berg and Vanbrugh quartets. Completing this stellar ensemble is Helena Wood, leader of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra. A seasoned performer on TV and radio, she has given numerous recitals at such prestigious venues as Wigmore Hall, Barbican Hall and the Royal Festival Hall. Programme as follows:

Georg Philipp Telemann, Fantasia No. 7 in E-Flat Major, TWV 40:20
Johan Halvorsen, Passacaglia (after G.F. Handel's Suite No. 7 in G Minor for Harpsichord)
Friedrich Hermann, Capriccio No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 2

Aoife Doyle Band

Aoife’s unique, expressive voice is equally at home with jazz, folk, country, bluegrass or blues, and her singing can evoke memories of the sophisticated, velvet tones of Ella Fitzgerald, the earthy, sweet lyricism of Patsy Cline or the straight‐up country clarity of Alison Krauss. Backed by Johnny Taylor’s subtle piano, Andrew Csibi’s inventive bass and Dominic Mullan’s sensitive percussion, the band has won much deserved critical acclaim. Their debut CD ‘Clouds’ is due for release on 28th June 2017 and tracks from the CD will be played on air exclusively for The Blue of the Night on 21st June.


Sonamus combines the talents of four highly-respected Irish musicians from the Traditional, Classical and Early music worlds: Cormac Breatnach (whistles), Annette Cleary (cello), Rachel Factor (harpsichord) and Eamon Sweeney (guitars).  The unique combination of instruments in Sonamus creates a beautiful sound that allows the group to explore a wide palette of tones and timbres in their performances of Irish Music spanning the last seven hundred years. Sonamus’ mission is to explore this breadth of Irish music and provide audiences an opportunity to hear music that was enjoyed by all strata of Irish society from the 16tth century to the present day.

Nell Ní Chróinín

Nell Ní Chróinín is the rising star of the traditional Irish music scene. Hailing from Béal Átha an Ghaorthaidh in the Múscraí Gaeltacht of northwest Cork, Nell Ní Chróinín became the youngest ever recipient of the TG4 Singer of the Year award in 2012.  In 2014, Nell won Corn Uí Riada and was both the youngest person ever to win it and the first person from Seán Ó Riada's home place of Múscraí to win it. Her singing is very much a product of her environment and heritage with its mix of the infectiously light-hearted and more serious songs. Nell has presented and participated in several TV traditional music programmes such as Geantraí, Anam an Amhrán, Amhrán is ansa liom and Cérbh í? and she features regularly at festivals at home and abroad.



Music Network presents

‘Blue of the Shortest Night’ a live Midsummer concert broadcast on RTÉ lyric fm on Wednesday 21st June

Featuring: Katherine Hunka, Ioana Petcu-Colan & Helena Wood; Aoife Doyle Band; Sonamus and Nell Ní Chróinín

Wednesday 21st June 2017

10:00pm –11:30 pm (Doors 9:30 pm)  

Studio 1, RTÉ Radio Centre, Donnybrook, Dublin 4

Free but ticketed with limited access, advance booking essential, four tickets max per person. BOOK TICKETS HERE.

Please note, as this concert takes place in a live broadcast setting, guests are asked to remain in their seats for the duration of this concert.