Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland plays host to BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards

Belfast's Waterfront Hall
Image caption Honours given out at Belfast's Waterfront Hall will include folk singer of the year and the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award

The BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards are due to take place at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast later.

It is the first time the event, which is in its 19th year, has been held in Northern Ireland.

Singer-songwriter Nick Drake will be 2018's inductee to the award's Hall of Fame, in the year that would have marked his 70th birthday.

His sister, actor Gabrielle Drake, will be there to hear a special performance of one of his songs.

Performers include Cara Dillon, Paul Brady, Eliza Carthy & The Wayward Band, Lankum, Dónal Lunny and the Armagh Pipers Club.

Image copyright Bryter Music
Image caption Drake only released 31 songs before he died, aged 26

Musician and producer Dónal Lunny will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to folk music.

He is widely regarded as being central to the renaissance of Irish music over the last three decades.

Image caption Eliza Carthy & The Wayward Band will be among the performers

The Armagh Pipers Club will be presented with the Good Tradition Award to recognise their contribution to the preservation, dissemination and progression of traditional music over a number of years.

Other awards include:

  • Folk Singer Of The Year
  • Best Duo
  • Best Group
  • Best Album
  • Horizon Award
  • Musician Of The Year
  • Best Original Track
  • Best Traditional Track
  • BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award

A number of guest presenters, including Finbar Furey, best known for his band of brothers, The Fureys, will take part.

Mark Radcliffe and Julie Fowlis will present the awards live on BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Radio 2 at 19:30 BST.

Following the ceremony, Ralph McLean will catch up with the winners on BBC Radio Ulster from 21:00 to 22:00.

A television highlights programme will also be broadcast on BBC Two Northern Ireland on Sunday 8 April at 17:30.

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