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Now is the Hour



We are The Kilfenora


In the span of a century, entire countries rise and fall, cultures evolve, fashions transform. Yet some have endured.
There are those who still prevail and even prosper.
One such icon, Ireland’s oldest Céilí Band, was born a century ago in the tiny village of Kilfenora.


John Lynch: Banjo, Mandolin & Leader

Fintan McMahon: Piano 

Sean Griffin: Drums

Anne Rynne & AnneMarie McCormack: Fiddles

Sinéad Heagney: Fiddle & Viola

Eimear Howley: Fiddle, Viola, Banjo & Mandolin

Anthony Quigney: Flute, Whistle & Piano

Garry Shannon: Flute & Whistle

Claire Griffin: Accordion

Tim Collins: Concertina

Brian O’Grady: Double Bass

Sharon Howley: Cello


News & Updates



Kilfenora Céilí Band Hit the Road for 2015

New Album “Now Is The Hour” Released 13 March


The legendary Kilfenora Céilí Band are set to release their latest album “Now Is The Hour” on 13 March 2015. The launch coincides with their pulsating new tour which is set to showcase a musical gear-change arising from the appointment of Lunasa’s Kevin Crawford as producer.  


With tunes forged out of raw native dance riffs from the Burren hills, the addition of viola, cello, bass and vocalist Don Stiffe’s new licence to roam further afield for songs, the century-long odyssey of the Kilfenora is picking up pace. 2015 is set to be an exciting time for the powerful 13-member supergroup and for their audiences!


As expected, this iconic troupe is kicking on with a more contemporary sound. Artistic tension between the rich dance music heritage and their big new soundscape has added spice to their large-scale theatre spectacle complete with pile-driving rhythms, slick dancers and the talented Don Stiffe on vocals.


After 105 years in the business the world-renowned Kilfenora Céilí Band are seen by many afficianadoes as the quintessential Irish céilí band. Their core repertoire of dance music, puntuated with an incomparable lift and rhythm, defines an unbroken tradition that dates from the beginning of the twentieth century. Despite this link with the past, their recent recordings and concert performances point to a broadening of the perceived boundaries of their genre. Collaborations with a diverse range of song and dance artists, experimentation with repertoire outside of the dance domain and complex harmonic arrangements speak to an ensemble who are pioneering new and exciting performance contexts for the céilí band genre. While acknowledging and incorporating the past, the Kilfenora thrives on creativity and innovation.


The band has travelled extensively, visiting Britain, Northern Ireland, Europe and the U.S. They have performed at Glastonbury twice and in 2009 headlined on the Acoustic Stage. The band has also performed concerts in Milwaukee, Lincoln Centre New York, Ireland’s National Concert Hall and Cork Opera House to name but a few.


The Kilfenora features fiddles, bass, cello, flutes, banjo, concertina and accordion, with what "Folk Roots" magazine called "one of the tightest rhythm sections in the world".

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by Kilfenora Ceili Band