To stay in or go out? The best New Year’s Eve entertainment
From James Vincent McMorrow and Lisa Hannigan to Imelda May’s bid to out-Jools Jools
Seamus Begley takes a break from bailing hay near Ventry, Co Kerry. Photograph: Don MacMonagle
Imelda May: the new Jools? Photograph: Shirlaine Forrest/WireImage
NEW YEAR’S EVE
Turning Pirate NYE Mix Tape
Vicar Street, Dublin 7.30pm €36 ticketmaster.ie
It didn’t take long, but this New Year’s Eve bash at Vicar Street, fashioned by promoters Turning Pirate for several years, has become an annual tradition for clued-in music fans. The basic premise is an evening of party songs and collaborations among some of Ireland’s most popular artists, so make way for the likes of James Vincent McMorrow, Lisa Hannigan, Mick Flannery, Booka Brass, Gavin Glass, as well as lead singers from Ham Sandwich (Niamh Farrell) and BARQ (Jess Kav), plus other acts. Tony Clayton Lea
NCH, Dublin 10pm €34.50-€69.50/€31-€62.50 nch.ie
RTÉ’s New Year’s Eve orchestral concerts, originally the domain of the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra, spent nearly two decades in the hands of the RTÉ Concert Orchestra. The NSO takes up duty again this year, signalling a change of repertoire from West End (last year’s soloist was Ramin Karimloo) to Vienna, with vocal contributions from Ireland’s Claudia Boyle and American tenor Charles Castronovo. The ticket price includes music in the foyer before and after the concert and a “complimentary glass of bubbly”. Neil Thomson conducts. After ringing out the old, the following day’s New Year Celebration (NCH, Dublin 3.30pm €24.50-€49.50/€22-€44.50 nch.ie), sees the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra back on stage at the National Concert Hall to ring in the new year, again with the sounds of Viennese waltzes and arias filling the air. Soprano Claudia Boyle is the soloist. George Hamilton is doing the honours as presenter. And Neil Thomson conducts. Michael Dervan
Oíche na Sean Bhliana, Babhta Ceoil: Na Mooneys vs Na Begleys
As part of the New Year’s Eve celebrations, Scoil Gheimhridh Ghaoth Dobhair presents Babhta Ceoil, featuring a face-off with two of Ireland’s best-known musical dynasties – Donegal’s Mooneys versus west Kerry giants the Begleys, led by Séamus & Méabh Begley. This is a family-friendly night, so BYOB. Siobhán Long
It’s become a bit of a tradition to see in the new year with Jools Holland’s annual Hootenanny on the Beeb, but a young Irish upstart is hoping we’ll switch over to the national broadcaster to watch The Imelda May New Year’s Eve Special (Sunday, RTÉ1, 10.20pm).
Little did Jools know that when he first had Imelda on as a guest on his show Later... all those years ago, she was plotting to take his place as the musical MC of New Year’s Eve telly. Imelda has assembled a line-up of homegrown talent to help ring in the New Year, including The Corrs (yes, they’re back), Finbar Furey, The Strypes, Gavin James and the Jerry Fish Electric Sideshow. Set your clocks for the countdown.
Also on New Year’s Eve, Brendan O’Carroll stars in the Mrs Brown’s Boys NYE special, entitled CSI: Mammy. Should be plenty of old jokes left over from the Mrs Brown’s Boys Christmas Special. When the neighbourhood is rocked by a crime wave, Agnes and Winnie agree to start up a neighbourhood watch scheme – but would you trust a sweary man in a pinafore to protect you from criminals? Kevin Courtney