Lúnasa, Lumiere, Mary Dillon, Neil Martin and Cherish the Ladies lead the Belfast Tradfest headliners for July festival

Tickets go on sale on April 26 at 10am

The acclaimed Lunasa are headliners at Belfast Tradfest in July

Belfast Tradfest returns in July with a packed line up that includes Lúnasa, BIIRD, Lumiere, Pólca 4, Bow Brothers, Cherish The Ladies, Mary Dillon, Dónal O’Connor and Neil Martin.

The annual traditional musical festival will be headlined by the highly influential Lúnasa. The five-piece group - Kevin Crawford, Sean Smyth, Cillian Vallely, Trevor Hutchinson and Ed Boyd - will be bringing their unique sound to the Empire Music Hall on July 25.

Éilís Kennedy and Pauline Scanlon of Lumiere

Duo Éilís Kennedy and Pauline Scanlon of Lumiere will be joined by guitar legend Donogh Hennessy for their biggest ever Belfast show, and are sure to dazzle the crowd with their effortless blend of vocal harmonies and complex guitar riffs.

The 11-piece all female group BIIRD will make their Belfast Tradfest debut. This collective consists of some of Ireland’s most notable musicians and singers of traditional music. Collectively they have won many All-Ireland titles as well as toured with shows such as Lord of the Dance and Riverdance.

Bow Brothers
Bow Brothers

Next on the docket is Pólca 4 from west Kerry who specialise in high energy dance music. The sound the band is known for centres around their accordion player Pádraig Ó Sé. They will be followed by Bow Brothers, Cathal and Stephen Hayden.

The brothers will be joined by award-winning fiddler Niall Murphy, as well as Sligo singer and guitarist Seamie O Dowd, musician Brian McGrath and percussionist Jimmy Higgins.

Mary Dillon, Dónal O’Connor and Neil Martin promise their performance will be like “when three traditional music comets collide”. The group will be bringing back timeless Ulster songs and their set will focus on the expressiveness of combining fiddle, cello, harmonium and uilleann pipes.

Mary Dillon, Doìnal O'Connor, & Neil Martin
Neil Martin, Mary Dillon and Doìnal O'Connor will once again create musical sparks at Tradfest

Cherish the Ladies will also be playing their biggest show in Belfast at the festival this year. The group is fronted by Joanie Madden, the 2021 National Heritage Fellowship Award winner. Joining her is Mirella Murray on the accordion, Nollaig Casey on the fiddle, Mary Coogan on guitar, Kate Purcell on lead vocals and guitar and Kathleen Boyle on the piano.


Bow Brothers, Mary Dillon, Dónal O’Connor and Neil Martin will play at 7.30pm at Empire Music Hall on Wednesday July 24. Lúnasa and Lumiere will play the same venue on Thursday July 25. On Saturday July 27, Cherish the Ladies will play at Mandela Hall at 1pm, followed by BIIRD and Pólca 4 at 7.30pm.

Tickets go on sale on Friday April 26 at 10am and can be found here. Belfast TradFest is supported by Belfast City Council, the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Ulster University, Belfast Cathedral Quarter BID and Belfast One BID.