Baltimore Fiddle Fair welcomes new faces and old friends

One of Ireland’s favourite music festivals, The Baltimore Fiddle Fair takes place this year from May 9 to 12, with musicians from USA, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Scotland, England and from all over Ireland.

Nora Brown & Stephanie Coleman

Baltimore Fiddle Fair has evolved from humble beginnings to become one of the most loved and respected festivals in the country. It is famous for its intimate settings, beautiful surroundings, friendly atmosphere, and primarily perhaps for its consistent ability to present a world-class line-up of national and international acts. This year’s festival is no exception and features an eclectic programme of incredible artists from Ireland and around the world.

The 2024 line-up includes six Irish premiere performances, featuring American folk sensations Nora Brown and Stephanie Coleman, Swedish/USA fiddle whizz’s Lena Jonsson and Brittany Haas, Norwegian Hardanger maestro Alexander Aga Røynstrand, amazing Scottish trio Lyre, powerhouse Swedish/Scottish five-piece Ian Carr and The Various Artists and the incredible young Finnish four-piece Polenta.

The festival also welcomes back some old friends from the early days, back in the legendary McCarthy’s Bar in Baltimore. These include the mesmerising UK quartet Flook with special guest Patsy Reid, astounding Shetland seven-piece Fiddlers’ Bid plus three incredible Irish acts: Tola Custy and Laosie Kelly from counties Clare and Mayo, Connemara’s The Kane Sisters with John Blake and Cork’s very own North Cregg.

One poignant event this year promises to be a very special tribute to Clonakilty native and Boston’s premier promoter of Celtic music and culture Brian O’Donovan, who sadly passed away a few months ago. This concert, on the Saturday afternoon, will feature a gathering of amazing singers and musicians who knew him well.

These intimate concerts will be held in unique venues across Baltimore, including small churches and cosy marquees, and all in one of the most stunning festival settings on the planet. Baltimore Fiddle Fair will also include a host of additional events including musical boat trips on the river and on the ocean, top class workshops, a documentary film screening, an informative historical walking tour, outdoor musical yoga, a concert for local primary schools, a very special photographic exhibition and a plethora of great sessions in and around the village.

For many musicians and music lovers, the annual pilgrimage to the Baltimore Fiddle Fair is definitely the highlight of the year and this year’s festival promises to be no exception.

A few remaining tickets for Baltimore Fiddle Fair are still available at

WCP Staff

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