The Frank Harte Festival 2020: “A Living Voice”

The 15th Frank Harte Festival will take place over the weekend of the 25-27 September 2020. This year, due to Covid-19 restrictions, all events will take place online. ITMA, who have a long standing relationship with the Festival, will be supporting the Club by filming an online virtual walking tour, and assisting in preparing their collaborative session with Poetry Ireland on Friday afternoon, and the Saturday night Grand Concert.

For those who were not online during the Festival weekend or are new to the Frank Harte Festival, we are delighted to let you know that the pre-recorded videos and Zoom singing sessions shown/held during the weekend remain available to view on the Frank Harte Festival YouTube Channel.

ITMA, who have a long standing relationship with the Festival, supported the Club by filming the Sunday online virtual walking tour 'Those Who Suffer Write the Songs', and assisting in preparing their collaborative session with Poetry Ireland on Friday afternoon, and the Saturday night Grand Concert. For you convenience we share the three events with which ITMA was particularly associated.

Despite the difficulties the country has encountered with the Covid-19 pandemic, the Festival project team are delighted that we have been able to continue to celebrate the memory  of Frank Harte and the great singing tradition which has been passed on to us by him and preceding generations. ITMA would like to salute the great determination shown by the Frank Harte Festival and An Góilín in their efforts to overcome the logistics involved in running a festival in the current environment. We would also like to acknowledge the support, flexibility and understanding of the Arts Council for their support during these extraordinary times.


Friday 25 September at 4.00pm

The Festival will open on Friday 25 at 4.00pm. This will be a pre-recorded innovative session in conjunction with Catherine Ann Cullen, Poetry Ireland’s Poet-in-Residence, from their premises in Parnell Square.  It will be entitled ‘Living Ghosts’ and will feature poets and singers in a tribute to Frank Harte.  ITMA was delighted to assist in preparing this online event.

Friday 25 September at 9.00pm

The first of the singing sessions will take place at 9.00pm on the festival’s Zoom platform and will feature the invited festival solo guest singers: Karan Casey, Macdara Yeates, Jennifer Orr, Dave O’Connor and Eibhlís  Ríordáin. 

Saturday 26 September at 11.00am

The annual singing workshop will take place on the morning of Saturday 26 at 11.00am on An Góilín’s Zoom platform, and will be given this year by the inimitable Dave O’Connor, who will feature a wide range of songs and styles with particular emphasis on the songs of Fingal. 

Saturday 26 September at 3.00pm

The afternoon singing session will be an open one, and again be on the Zoom platform which will run from 3.00pm to 5.00pm. 

Please email [email protected] to access the festival’s Zoom sessions. 

Saturday 26 September at 8.00pm 

On Saturday evening at 8.00pm a new book ‘A Living Voice’, The Frank Harte Song Collection, edited by Terry Moylan will be launched by Frank’s long-time friend and musical collaborator Dónal Lunny. 

This will be followed by The Grand Concert which will feature ‘Bryan O’Leary and The Slopes of Sliabh Luachra and the festival solo guest singers. 

ITMA was delighted to assist in preparing this online event.

Sunday 27 September at 11.00am 

One of the highlights of the festival each year, is the annual singing and walking tour. This year it is entitled ‘Those who suffer write the songs’. It will be virtual, prerecorded, and will be premiered on the Frank Harte Festival Facebook and Youtube platforms on Sunday 27 at 11.00am.  

Sunday 27 September at 2.30pm 

The festival will conclude on Sunday afternoon with a final singing session which will run from 2.30pm to 5.30pm on the Zoom platform.  

For those who were not online during the Festival weekend or are new to the Frank Harte Festival, we are delighted to let you know that the pre-recorded videos and Zoom singing sessions shown/held during the weekend remain available to view on the Frank Harte Festival YouTube Channel.

ITMA, who have a long standing relationship with the Festival, supported the Club by filming the Sunday online virtual walking tour 'Those Who Suffer Write the Songs', and assisting in preparing their collaborative session with Poetry Ireland on Friday afternoon, and the Saturday night Grand Concert. For you convenience we share the three events with which ITMA was particularly associated.

ITMA would also like to draw your attention to another freely available Frank Harte song resource from its collection, a playlist of recordings of Frank made at the Góilín Singers Club and presented as part of the Góilín Song Project

Frank Harte: 33 Live Recordingsmade at An Góilín Traditional Singers Club, Dublin. Part of the Góilín Song Project available on the ITMA website.



An Góilín, a Dublin traditional singing institution that has been meeting socially in a variety of venues in the capital since 1979. ITMA is proud to have collaborated with An Góilín on an online microsite featuring some 700 audio recordings made at An Góilín, since the early 1980s which are supplemented by various photographs, singer profiles, interviews and printed items available at https://www.itma.ie/goilin