For more than a decade now, the hallowed, humble,crumbling walls of the 200 year-old St. James Church in Dingle, Co. Kerry, Ireland have played host to Other Voices, the seminal music TV series recorded each December in this small ﬁshing town at the edge of Europe.
Over the years, Other Voices has welcomed some of the world’s most eclectic music-makers and captured on ﬁlm scores of unique, one-off live performances. Household names and raw new talent journey from across the globe and over a few wintery days and nights create musical magic together on the world’s coolest miniature sound stage, St. James’ Church.
Four artists take part in the daily recording process – in the morning and afternoon, weather-beaten recording crews and sleep deprived bands lurch from stranded ancient shipwrecks to the warmth of ﬁne local hostelries, canning one-off acoustic rarities and informal chats with the show’s presenter. Each evening, the artists, and a handful of true music fans – there’s only room for seventy souls under the sweating eaves of St. James’ – descend upon the church for a collection of unique Other Voices performances, captured live on camera. The scale of the church, its beautiful architectural detail and the light ﬂooding through its old stained glass windows create an intimate ambiance. During ﬁlming,the atmosphere in the church can turn without warning from reverential silence to bombastic altar-side rampage, depending on the artist who has taken centre-stage.
Over the years, the recording of Other Voices has become a music festival in its own right, embraced by the local people of this world famous Kerry town, who wouldn’t bat an eyelid on ﬁnding a famous face sitting across the bar from them. In December, Dingle is a beautiful, magical, special place, are spite from the harried sell-sell of Christmas, a chance to enjoy a hot whiskey, an impromptu session and roaring turf ﬁres.
Music fans from across the world travel to the town to soak up the Other Voices atmosphere on the off chance that they might get lucky and score a seat in the church or the sure-bet that they’ll catch a musical hero enjoying a pint in one of Dingle’s character laden drinking establishments. In many of Dingle’s bars, fans can enjoy the live performances from the church in high deﬁnition courtesy of Intune Networks wonderful technology, which allows all visitors to share in the musical magic of Other Voices. Dingle and its vibe are at the heart of what makes Other Voices so special, why bands agree to come here in the middle of an Irish winter and why they keep returning again and again. Over two hundred and ﬁfty acts have made the Other Voices musical pilgrimage, bringing with them a diversity of musical styles and inﬂuences that can rarely be found at any other music gathering.
With nearly a decade in the bag, Other Voices has grown from a tiny musical seed into a living,breathing and ever evolving musical adventure.
The Place – Dingle
Located at the edge of Europe, the Dingle Peninsula stretches into the Atlantic Ocean from the Southwest of Ireland. Once cited as ‘the most beautiful place on earth’ by the National Geographic, Dingle was also voted among the top 100 destinations in the world by Trip Advisor and CNN recently recommended it as a very favourable winter destination.
And it’s easy to see why it has received all these accolades. Surrounded by the sea, it is a place that is rich in every aspect – it has a thriving Irish language community, a rich and authentic musical and literary tradition, fabulous food, warm and welcoming local people and a thriving tourism business built around coastal activities. Set against a stunningly beautiful backdrop, it has a creative spirit that is palpable.
Through Other Voices, the beauty of the Dingle peninsula is exposed and transmitted to the world. Visitors and artists are drawn to the magic of the place and once they visit, they find it difficult to leave and always want to return. Artists have a sense of arriving home when they come to Dingle, they find it energising, restorative and a source of great inspiration.
Other Voices has transformed Dingle into an international creative musical hub, a musical melting pot where musicians and artists, local, national and international sing and play together in a creative context which serves to validate Ireland’s positioning as a land of creativity, innovation and inspiration.
For further information on Dingle and the surrounding area or to find great holiday packages in the region, visit www.discoverireland.ie.
The Venue – St James Church
There is something special about St. James Church in Dingle. For a start, it’s 200 years old. It’s small, it’s intimate, there is a certain spirit about it. Traditional music has been played in the Church over the years so there’s a real sense that there is music in the walls.
At first, some musicians find it a little strange performing in a Church. But it is a really interesting, creative and inspiring space and sets a rich context for Other Voices. Something unique happens in the room when people walk in and this results in truly amazing performances. Unlike many venues, it has no backstage area and there are no backstage passes. In between acts, the small audience moves between the venue and Benners Hotel across the road. It is a truly unique experience for both artist and audience.
Other Voices Accommodation in Dingle
Contact: 066 9151638
Contact: 066 9150200
Dingle Bay Hotel
Contact: 066 9151231
Contact: John & Mary Curran
Contact: Bernie Bambury
066 9151244 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Alpine House Dingle
Contact: John O’Shea & Caroline Finn
066 9151250 / email@example.com
Barr na tSraide
Contact: Patricia Geeney
066 9151331 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact: Helen Heaton
066 9152788 / email@example.com
The Lantern Townhouse
066 9151088 / firstname.lastname@example.org
An Riasc 4 Star Country Home
Tel: + 353 66 9155446 / email@example.com
The Waters Edge
Contact: Grainne Kavanagh
066 9152345 / firstname.lastname@example.org
The Rainbow Hostel
Located just outside of town, but they have free shuttle bus. 20 mins walk.
066-9151044 / email@example.com
066 9151434 / firstname.lastname@example.org
These details are for information purposes only and do not imply any association or connection between the owners and the organisers of Other Voices.