The Clonmel Junction Festival - over one hundred events in just seven days this July

Arts News

The Clonmel Junction Festival - over one hundred events in just seven days this July

The Clonmel Junction Festival, which will feature over one hundred events in more than thirty venues over seven days, will take place from July 4th to 10th.

The story of Bridget Cleary is immortalised in children’s rhyme. Folklore tells us that this Tipperary woman, the victim of dangerous superstitious beliefs, was the last witch burned in Ireland in 1895, after her husband Michael and family members suspected her of being possessed by a fairy.

Inspired by her story, the 2016 Clonmel Junction Festival embraces Bridget - the entrepreneur, the seamstress, the milliner - while at the same time celebrating Irish folklore, fairy tales and witches through it’s bustling and varied 2016 festival programme.

Why not enjoy an international cast of music magic-makers, award-winning theatre shows, comedians, free children’s events, bespoke food events, exclusive exhibitions, dance and discussion while the Bulmer's free music trail will run all week in locations throughout the town. Yvonne McGuinness, Michael Fortune, Linda Buckley, Laura Sheeran and Stephanie Dufresne will present new festival commissions.

The week will feature a number of highlights - for a full brochure please see

Some of the highlights include . . .

Underground, there’s a Japanese food feast and intimate concerts in the millions-of-years-old Mitchelstown Cave while overground there’s much to savour including folk music royalty and BBC award winners The Unthanks; singers Lisa Hannigan and Lisa O’Neill; theatre in a bakery; New York Times theatre critics pick Beowulf The Blockbuster; Ghostly German pianist Hauschka; Gloaming fiddle virtuoso Caoimhin O’Raghailligh; a prohibition-era themed night with hot 1920’s jazz; ethereal sean nos singer Iarla O Lionaird; an exhibition by world renowned artist and Tipperary resident Gottfried Helnwein; comedy with Neil Delamere, Lords of Strut, Apres Match and National treasure, performance legend and accidental activist Panti Bliss.

The Bulmer's free music trail will see a host of different acts coming to Clonmel from Cian Nugent to the Young Folk and Kaara to Karen Underwood - come and enjoy some soul, folk, funk and trad sounds during the festival.

Evoking the house-to-house storytelling tradition of old Ireland, master storytellers Niall de Burca and Seanachai Eddie Linehan will tell late-night fright stories involving fairies, wee men and other strange happenings.

For the younger folk there’s a ‘Sugar Plum Fairy Trail’ in an orchard, a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party featuring Alice In Wonderland characters, Lego workshops, street entertainment and from Australia, fairytale-like seven-metre high inflatable rabbits spectacularly illuminated at night.

There’s exquisite food and intrigue at the ‘Murder Mystery Night’ while the pop-up Eat Me Drink Me Cafe serves eat me cakes and drink me potions. Meanwhile the award-winning Japanese chef Takashi Miyazakiwill will celebrate the festival of Tanabata with a fine dining experience in Mitchelstown Cave.

To bring the festivities to a close CJF16 will host a Witches & Fairies Rave hosted by the Lords of Strut in a secret location for thirty minutes, hard core on the dance floor - admittance only to witches or fairies - get creative!