Other Voices: From Dingle to Derry

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Media captionKieron Tourish reports for BBC Newsline

A music festival that is usually held in a small church in Dingle, County Kerry will take place in Londonderry this weekend.

Other Voices has been moved from one old church to another - the Glassworks on Great James' Street in Derry - as part of the City of Culture celebrations.

Acts due to perform include Two Door Cinema Club, Marina and the Diamonds, and Neil Hannon.

As part of the event, bands will play in venues across the city and music from the Glassworks will be streamed to several locations.

Other Voices has been held in Dingle since its inception almost a decade ago, after producer Phillip King and Oscar-winning musician Glen Hansard discussed the idea while walking along a beach in the area.

"I was drawn always to the west of Ireland," said Mr King. "I find it inspirational, empowering and a creative place."

"We thought it would be a great place to invite people to come and play a tune."

'Sense of Irishness'

The idea developed into a televised event of intimate performances in the 200-year-old St. James Church.

Image caption Amy Winehouse performed for Other Voices in 2006

It has been held annually in the winter months, attracting artists from across Ireland and further afield, including Amy Winehouse and Jarvis Cocker.

"There was that sense of Irishness about it," said Mr King. "That sense of a session, an exchange - being open and trusting that you could sit down and play away".

Mr King said he did not think twice when asked to take the event, for the first time, outside Dingle, over three hundred miles north to Derry. The "singing city of Derry" he calls it. It was an automatic 'yes'.

The event will cross to London in April. "To make that connection between Dingle, Derry and London, it is very interesting," said Mr King.

Other Voices begins in Derry on Friday night.

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