Briefly Up Close



Bocs Social will sadly play their last Kilkenny gig this weekend. Billy Byrne’s hosts the session this Saturday in an event titled Disconnect Hallowe’en. The focus is on Rude Boy Rude Girl fancy dress or wear black and white. The Kilo 1977 completes what promises to be an excellent night.

Schools concert

Kilkenny has sent forward a contender to the All-Ireland School Talent Search with others through to the region’s semi-finals. Heats have been taking place at Springhill Court Hotel over the past while with a county final there last Friday night. Coláiste Pobail Osraí’s Emma Kelly went straight through to the national event with her rendition of Etta James’ At Last while hoping to follow her via the regional finals are Ryan Thomas from Ballyhale, Sophie Knox Khan from Presentation Secondary School and Molly Sterling from Kilkenny College.

Other participants were RNA (Grennan College), Stacy Dunne, Jordan Butler, The Escapers (Kilkenny College), Feibhar Baldwin Wall (Loreto), NCL (Grennan College), Siobhan McClean (Kilkenny College), Danny Burke (St Kieran’s College), Ciara Walsh (Loreto), James Corcoran (Kilkenny College), Ethan Moynan (Kilkenny College), Sarah Luttrell (Kilkenny College) and Vocal Pressure (Grennan College).

Neon Wolf

One of Kilkenny’s most-followed acts, for good reason, takes to the Thomastown stage this weekend. Neon Wolf can be found on Saturday night in Eddie Murphy’s. Come in fancy dress and do the monster mash from 9.30pm.

Days of America Festival

It’s great to know that the festival train in Kilkenny is never ending. As we embrace a number of regular and new festive antics this weekend, The Hole in the Wall is exploring another. The crew is looking at the links between the traditional music of Ireland and that of eastern Canada. The latter is the link to Cajun and Zydeco in the New Orleans delta. From Zydeco the blues may well spring. The seminal link may be the Irish reels of Dennis McGee (the French-speaking Cajun who recorded them on fiddle in Louisiana in 1920). The current pre-festival period heralds the performance of Rob Strong and his band on November 21, Lake Montgomery (Long Songs and Short Stories) on November 22 (Thanksgiving Day) and Maria Doyle Kennedy on November 24. Rob will be joined by daughter Niamh once again and on this occasion a future show about the blues and African-American history will be piloted. Lake is from Paris, Texas in the US and is based in Amsterdam. She is a natural poet whose lyrics are short stories in themselves. Maria will return to the venue with partner Kieran Kennedy for the second time as part of her European tour, promoting the new album, Sing. Tickets for Maria Doyle Kennedy are at and the Hole in the Wall, from where tickets for the other shows can also be purchased.

Halloween fancy dress

A Halloween fund-raising fancy-dress party will take place in Malzard’s Stoneyford this Saturday night. From 9pm expect spooky costumes and goings on at the venue. Proceeds will go to Cois Nore Cancer Support Centre, Kilkenny.

Teenage Halloween

Halloween may traditionally be associated with young kids out trick-or-treating. In recent years, however, the rest of us have been able to get in on the action as have those in their teenage years. On Friday night from 8.30-11.30pm Kilkenny Rugby Club hosts a teenage disco. Attendees must dress up or be masked up. Then on Monday Liam Dunne Promotions will hold a Teenage Halloween Ball at Pegasus night club from 9pm to 12.30am. David Phelan and DJ Seanie-D will be on hand to spin all of the festive favourites.

Night of the Living Dead

What an appropriate weekend to see Devious Theatre Company showcase the video of its last production. Kilkenny’s most innovative group staged Night of the Living Dead at the Watergate some time ago. On Friday night at Cleere’s they’ll screen the show for cast, crew and others.

Home Care Halloween

Bennettsbridge parish has been associated with fund-raising for various cancer research projects for over 30 years. In the early 1980s, charity runs were held in conjunction with Muintir na Tire and funds went to Action for Cancer Treatment (ACT). The local Tidy Towns Association was involved in the organising of the walks at the time. The Terry Fox Run came into play in Ireland in the ’90s and this event captured the imagination of the public as it highlighted the efforts of a young Canadian, Terry Fox, who had cancer, to raise awareness of the disease. Terry had his leg amputated as a result of his cancer and despite this he ran across Canada to raise money for research. Money raised from the walks in Ireland went to the Irish Cancer Society and was used for cancer research in Ireland.

For a number of years, an auction was held to boost the takings from the walk and this proved to be very popular and local businesses were very generous in supporting the event. When the Irish Cancer Society decided in 2009 to discontinue the Terry Fox Run due to lack of interest, the local committee decided to continue with the auction and to donate the proceeds to the Carlow/Kilkenny Home Care Team. Thus began the annual Halloween Auction and Fancy Dress which is held in The Ouncel House, Dungarvan.

This year’s event takes place this Saturday and local business people have again come to the fore with very generous sponsorship. Items include, pottery, glass, household, linen, green fees from, Mount Juliet, Kilkenny, Callan, Borris and Mountain View. The success of the auction is due in no small way to the input of the Walsh family, proprietors of The Ouncel House, and a big crowd is expected to attend what should be a very enjoyable occasion. The winner of the fancy-dress competition will receive an inscribed Jerpoint Glass nut bowl. The night will also include a raffle with a wide array of prizes. Proceeds are in aid of the Carlow/Kilkenny Home Care Team.


Ossory Youth is providing a series of free workshops for young people interesting in learning how to produce rap music, from composing lyrics to music production and performance. The eight workshops start this Friday from 7-9pm in Desart Hall, New Street, Kilkenny. If you have a teenager or know a teenager age 12-18 who might have an interest, feel free to call Paul at 087 9503688 to find out more and to book a place.


If you want to include information in Up Close and Personal or the Gig Guide, you can phone 086 8628626, email or leave a note at All items must be forwarded by 6pm on Sunday to be considered for inclusion.