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Failte Festival: A St. Patrick’s Celebration

February 26th, 2020 |


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Music is so ingrained in Irish culture that an instrument, the harp, is the national emblem of Ireland. If the harp is the national symbol of Ireland, then surely Guinness must be the national drink of Ireland. And what is the company logo? The harp!

The Irish Harp and Traditional Irish Music St Patrick's Day Bethlehem Donegal Square

In 1961, the Clancy Brothers appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show, four young men in Aran sweaters, making Irish music history and bringing Irish folk music across the Atlantic. Since then, Irish-Americans and music enthusiasts have embraced Celtic music in its many forms.

A New St. Patrick’s Tradition

Donegal Square brought the tradition of the Irish Trad Fest to Bethlehem! Our third annual Failte Festival (failte being the Irish word for “welcome”) takes place Friday, March 13 through Sunday, March 15 at the Charles A. Brown Ice House in Bethlehem. Three days, six shows– a wonderful celebration of Irish music and dance for St. Patrick’s weekend. Failte Festival tickets are $20 per show, available at Donegal Square, 534 Main Street, Bethlehem PA or online at Multi-show ticket packages are also available.

Amazing Talent

The incredible world champion piper Robert Watt will appear at all six shows. Robert plays the Highland bagpipes, a range of Irish whistles and the Lowland and Border Pipes. Each performance will have a headliner accompanying Robert, bands and musicians who have played to enthusiastic crowds at Musikfest and Celtic Classic.

The Failte Festival kicks off Friday March 13 at 7:30 PM with The Rogue Diplomats, with their high-energy, close harmonies and irreverent humor. You can’t help but sing along to their jigs, shanties, and drinking songs!

The Jeremiahs made their Celtic Classic debut in 2019 to great acclaim. They combine traditional and contemporary sounds to create their own brand of Urban Folk music. We can’t wait for their two shows on Saturday March 14 (2:15 and 8:15 PM)

The talented and always energetic O’Grady Quinlan dancers and Seamus Kelleher will appear on Saturday March 14 at 5:00 PM. Seamus Kelleher plays at Celtic Classic, McCarthy’s Red Stag Pub and Whiskey Bar, as well as pubs and festivals up and down the East coast. His virtuoso guitar playing, comedy, and storytelling makes for an unforgettable show!

Sunday March 15 at 2:00 and 4:15 PM, we end our weekend with Musikfest and Celtic Classic favorite, Seamus Kennedy. Originally influenced by Tommy Makem and the Clancy Brothers, Seamus brings his music and wit to the Failte Festival. You will laugh, sing, and forget your cares for a while!