“Consistently a crowd favorite.” Wheeling Celtic Festival
Hooley CD, Cuts from the Turf
From Hooley’s CD, Cuts from the Turf

Photo by Heather Mull

Hooley’s upcoming performances

Friday, September 5, 2014
Céilí dancing with Hooley + Liz Shovlin Grinko calling, 8pm to 9:30pm
Magners Pub Stage
Pittsburgh Irish Festival, Fri., Sept. 5 thru Sun., Sept. 7, 2014
Riverplex at Sandcastle (next to The Waterfront)
1000 Sandcastle Drive, West Homestead, see map
Homestead, Pennsylvania 15210

Saturday, September 6, 2014
Céilí dancing with Hooley + Liz Shovlin Grinko calling, 8pm to 9:30pm
Magners Pub Stage
Pittsburgh Irish Festival, Fri., Sept. 5 thru Sun., Sept. 7, 2014
Riverplex at Sandcastle (next to The Waterfront)
1000 Sandcastle Drive, West Homestead, see map
Homestead, Pennsylvania 15210

Other Irish/Celtic traditional music and special events in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

SESSIONS
Every Sunday, year-round
Irish traditional music session, 5pm to 7pm
The Claddagh Irish Pub
Next door to the cinema at SouthSide Works
407 Cinema Drive (at Tunnel Boulevard)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15203
412.381.4800 Claddagh

First Tuesday of the month, year-round
Irish traditional music session, 8pm to 10pm
North Country Brewing Company
141 South Main Street
Slippery Rock, Pennsyvlania 16057
724.794.2337 North Country

Last Thursday of the month, year-round
The Steeltown Session
Irish traditional music session, 8pm to 11pm
Mullaney’s Harp and Fiddle Irish Pub
2329 Penn Avenue at 24th Street, Strip District
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15222
412.642.6622 Harp

DANCES
Every Tuesday, year-round
Céilí with Liz Shovlin Grinko + musicians, 8pm to 10pm
Free céilí dance lessons for beginners with Liz Shovlin Grinko and Jim Guay, 7pm
A Pittsburgh Post-Gazette story
Sponsored by PittsburghCéilí Club (music plays on home page)
Mullaney’s Harp and Fiddle Irish Pub
2329 Penn Avenue at 24th Street, Strip District
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15222

Second Saturday of the month, October–May
Céilí with Comhaltas Pittsburgh musicians, 8pm to 11pm
Sponsored by All Ireland
American Legion Post 577
5857 Forbes Avenue, Squirrel Hill, see map
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15217

Ongoing
Intermediate-level céilí/set dance lessons with Susan Kozak
Three Rivers Crossroads Ceili Studio
Allison Park, Pennsylvania
724.355.1477 Susan

More traditional Irish music and culture news in

Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann Pittsburgh is the Pittsburgh branch of the international organization dedicated to the preservation of traditional Irish music, dance, song, and language since 1951. Irish Centre of Pittsburgh is the center for Irish culture and education in Pittsburgh; the Centre also hosts its hall and grounds for receptions, weddings, concerts, and dances. Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre produces high-quality, text-driven, affordable productions of classical theatre and the works of classical and contemporary Irish playwrights. The Pittsburgh Irish Network is a website devoted to promoting Irish-American culture in Pittsburgh.

Diane Byrnes’ Irish/Celtic radio program and calendar Echoes of Erin is aired weekly on WEDO 810 AM, Sunday 1pm–2pm. Diane also publishes her excellent blog and Dateline Irish calendar of events page on the Web. Pittsburgh musician Michael Murphy’s podcast IrishMusicPodcast.com features Irish music and news from Pittsburgh and elsewhere. If you would like your Irish band’s music included or have news to tell, Michael would love to hear from you. The Pittsburgh Irish Festival broadcasts its Celtic Waves radio program on the Internet around the clock. National Public Radio’s award-winning Irish/Celtic music roots program The Thistle & Shamrock is broadcast twice weekly in Pittsburgh on WYEP 91.3FM, Sunday, 7pm–8pm and Saturday, 5am–6am. Other traditional music programs in Pittsburgh periodically broadcasting traditional Irish music include Ken Batista’s An American Sampler, WYEP 91.3-FM, Sunday, 7am–11am; Larry Berger’s Saturday Light Brigade, WRCT 88.3-FM, Saturday, 6am–noon; and Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion, WQED 89.3-FM, Saturday, 6pm–8pm.

Of course, there are Irish music festivals held throughout the region. In calendar order, there is the Wheeling Celtic Festival held the first weekend of March, the Riverfront Irish Festival held in early June, Irish Summerfest held in late June, Cleveland’s Irish Cultural Festival held in late July, the Dublin Irish Festival held in early August, the Pittsburgh Irish Festival held the first weekend of September, and the Cincinnati Celtic Festival held the second weekend of September. Farther out, but well worth the trip, is the largest Irish festival in North America, the Milwaukee Irish Fest held in mid August.

Other websites with information about Irish and other traditional (and not so traditional) music in Pittsburgh include AcoustiCafe and Bogside Rogues.

Traditional Irish music and dance lessons in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

For private lessons on Irish instruments, novice through advanced levels, with members of Hooley, contact us. Calliope Folk Music School has classes on several Irish and other traditional music instruments and dances. There are three eight-week terms: October, February, and April; held in the evening at Chatham College in Squirrel Hill.

There are four Irish step dance schools in Pittsburgh. Bell School of Irish Dance has classes in the North Hills. Burke Conroy School of Irish Dance has classes in Squirrel Hill. Led by Hooley’s own Maggie and Sally Folan, Pittsburgh Irish Reelers is a non-competitive school with classes in Squirrel Hill. Shovlin Academy of Irish Dance has classes in Dormont (and Johnstown).

Irish social dances are taught at several locations throughout Pittsburgh. Mullaney’s Harp and Fiddle has lessons a half hour prior to the weekly Tuesday evening céilí there. The Pittsburgh Céilí Club has céilí and set dance lessons each Sunday 7–9pm at St. Raphaels in Morningside. Coal Country Traditions sponsors and teaches a variety of other traditional dances throughout Pittsburgh.

Irish language classes are taught by the Pittsburgh branch of The Gaelic League and the Irish Centre of Pittsburgh.

Spend a week, too, at one or more of these regional Irish-music summer camps. They are a great opportunity to take instrument, voice and dance lessons from national performers, to participate in sessions and dances with them, and attend concerts. Augusta Heritage Irish Week is held late-July at Elkins and Davis College in Elkins, West Virginia, an easy three-hour four-lane drive from Pittsburgh. Catskills Irish Arts Week is held mid-July in East Durham, New York. Milwaukee Irish Fest Summer School is held in mid-August at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, the week before the Milwaukee Irish Fest. (A double reason to go.) Northern Week at Ashokan is held late-July at Jay Ungar and Molly Mason’s fiddle and dance camp in the Catskills near Woodstock, New York. Irish music classes not always taught, and when they are, they are included with other traditional music styles. Outstanding food! The Swannanoa Gathering Celtic Week is held early-July at Warren Wilson College near Asheville, North Carolina.

Irish music and dance festival competitions (Fleadh Cheoil) are held yearly by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann. Those who qualify at one of the two North American regionals in the spring are then eligible to participate in the All Ireland world festival competition held late-August in Ireland.

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