The Guide: Muireann Bradley, Tate McRae and other events to see, shows to book and ones to catch before they end

April 13th-19th: The best movies, music, art and more coming your way this week

Event of the week

Muireann Bradley

Saturday, April 13th, Whelan’s, Dublin, 8.30pm, €20 (sold out),

This time six months ago very few people had heard of Muireann Bradley, the 17-year-old Co Donegal guitarist whose music-loving father was eager to make her aware of old-school blues players such as Blind Willie McTell, Mississippi John Hurt and Elizabeth Cotton. By the end of 2023, however, Bradley’s debut album, I Kept These Old Blues, had picked up numerous excellent reviews (“her technique and timing are the fruit of serious talent and application,” observed this paper’s reviewer), and on New Year’s Eve she performed on Jools’ Annual Hootenanny, on the BBC, alongside Rod Stewart, Sugababes and the programme’s host, Jools Holland. After this weekend’s show, her next Dublin appearances are on Sunday, May 5th, at Whelan’s, and on Saturday, July 20th, at Liberty Hall – both are sold out. She’ll be playing more Irish gigs in June, July and August; has updates.


Tate McRae

Wednesday, April 17th, and Thursday, April 18th, 3Olympia Theatre, Dublin, 7.30pm, €51.40,

Judging by her success from the age of 16 (when her song You Broke Me First crossed into the mainstream), the Canadian singer Tate McRae is no stranger to tween- and teen-audience love. There will be plenty of that at these two shows, which will showcase hard-hitting ballads such as That Way, Run for the Hills and Cut My Hair as well as pop bangers such as She’s All I Wanna Be, Hurt My Feelings and Greedy.

Visual art

Willie Doherty: Remnant

From Saturday, April 13th, until Saturday, June 8th, Solstice Arts Centre, Navan, Co Meath,

Willie Doherty, the multidisciplinary artist from Derry, is absorbed with the inadequacies of memory, a topic that he explores in Remnant with voice and sound, video and photography. The work “articulates new perspectives on transgenerational trauma and our apprehension and uncertainty about the future”. Alongside the exhibition, visitors can see the artist’s film Endless (making its cinematic premiere here) and other selections of his film work. The Solstice website has details of viewing times.


Catalyst International Film Festival

From Thursday, April 18th, until Saturday, April 20th, various venues, times and prices, Limerick,

Engendering inclusiveness and reversing under-representation in the film industry are part of the mission of Catalyst International Film Festival, so what you will experience across three days is a blend of masterclasses (Interactive Filmmaking, Thursday, April 18th, Engine Limerick/Belltable, 9am-4pm), screenwriting (Shaping the Future, Friday, April 19th, Savoy Hotel, 9.30am-5pm) and screenings (Baltimore, Friday, April 19th, Belltable, 8pm, and Verdigris, Saturday, April 20th, Belltable, 8pm). The screening of Baltimore will be followed by a Q&A with the film’s directors, Christine Molloy and Joe Lawlor. Also, in keeping with the festival’s ethos, Baltimore and Verdigris are subtitled in Ukrainian. Full details are on the festival website.



A Night Out with Irvine Welsh

Friday, April 19th, Liberty Hall Theatre, Dublin, 8pm, €34.95,

It’s a curse, perhaps, for any author to be constantly reminded that after a 30-year career that has combined writing novels, short stories, plays and screenplays with directing films, their debut novel is the one they will be remembered for. Irvine Welsh knows the score, of course, and anyone who follows him on social media will be aware that he doesn’t hold back his opinions about anything. In conversation with the arts writer Éamon Sweeney, Welsh will be talking about his forthcoming novel, Resolution (his third book featuring Det Insp Ray Lennox), as well as Trainspotting and, maybe, his love of the Boomtown Rats song Banana Republic.

Granard Booktown Festival

Friday-Sunday, April 19th-21st, various venues, times and prices, Granard, Co Longford,

Granard Booktown Festival aims to open up the pleasures of reading books to rural communities. Its second year features an excellent line-up of authors, interviews and workshops. Among the highlights programmed by the event’s directors, Ronan O’Toole and John Connell, are the American musician and occasional Co Longford resident John Murry in conversation with the actor Aidan Gillen (Friday, April 19th, Fay’s Bar, 6.50pm), Sinéad Gleeson talking about her debut novel, Hagstone, with the Emmy-nominated film-maker Shaunagh Connaire (Friday, April 19th, Sacred Heart School, 8pm) and the writer Patrick deWitt in conversation with Dani Gill (Saturday, April 20th, Fay’s Bar, 3.25pm). Full details are on the festival website.


Children of the Sun

From Thursday, April 18th (previews from Saturday, April 13th), until Saturday, May 11th, Abbey Theatre, Dublin, 7.30pm, €45/€30/€27,

This radical adaptation by the writer (and Irish Times columnist) Hilary Fannin brings Maxim Gorky’s 1905 play into the present day. The premise remains – a family undergoes a crisis while unaware of societal schisms taking place – but Fannin’s themes of survival amid ambiguity strike original notes. Aislín McGuckin, Brian Doherty, Colin Campbell and Fiona Bell star; Lynne Parker directs.

12 Angry Men

Tuesday-Saturday, April 16th-20th, Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, Dublin, 7.30pm, €53/€48/€35/€30,

The fate of a young tearaway accused of patricide rests in the hands of a dozen men bearing initially predetermined notions and biases about not just the accused but also the trial and each other. Fans of British soaps (from Emmerdale, Coronation Street and EastEnders to Casualty and Peak Practice) will recognise familiar faces (including Jason Merrells, Tristan Gemmill and Gray O’Brien) as the voting reaches its tense conclusion.

Still running

Cirque du Soleil presents: Ovo

Thursday-Sunday, April 18th-21st, 3Arena, Dublin, 6.30pm (morning and matinee shows Saturday and Sunday), €86.25/€76.25/€65.70,

Roll up, roll up: the 21st-century circus is in town, one that features award-winning, heart-in-mouth acrobatics (including from champion gymnasts and Olympians). The theme running throughout Ovo (the Portuguese for “Egg”) is biodiversity, which is explored through exceptionally skilled high-energy movement and vivid colour.

Book it this week

Phoenix, Iveagh Gardens, Dublin, July 18th,

Nick Lowe, National Concert Hall, Dublin, September 28th,

Greg Davies, Vicar Street, Dublin, October 17th-19th,

Vampire Weekend, 3Arena, Dublin, November 29th,