Since its inception in 2014, the National Concert Hall’s Perspectives series has been a platform for innovative, alternative and influential music in Dublin. In 2019, it staged immensely important artists – including Laurie Anderson, Philip Glass and Anoushka Shankar – and it has opened a window through which Dublin audiences can experience large-scale, experimental live shows.
The venue has established itself as the best equipped and most willing venue to accommodate such influential names, and seems to have no desire to slow down. From what has been announced for the series so far this year, we can already look forward to a night featuring Martin Hayes and the Common Ground Ensemble, as well as Anderson’s much anticipated two-night return in March.
On February 9th – this Sunday – Perspectives will welcome back some familiar faces, through its 2020 installment of Imagining Ireland, entitled Speaking Up, Singing Louder. The event features an all-female lineup. Billed as a night that brings together the “groundswell of women’s voices” that Ireland is currently experiencing, its cast includes acclaimed artists from various disciplines and from different genres within those disciplines. On a literary front, writers such as Eimear McBride and Sinead Gleeson will feature, and at the intersection between music and words stands Zambian–Irish rapper, poet and singer Denise Chaila.
Lisa O’Neill and Radie Peat – two of the biggest names in the Dublin music scene last year – are particularly exciting musical names within the lineup. O’Neill’s recent win at the Radio One Folk Awards for Best Folk Track is but a small attestation to her influence and power as a folk artist: she’s renowned for her witty poetic lyrics as well as her commanding, unique presence. Her voice is an instantly recognisable and distinctive instrument.
Radie Peat has made her name as one quarter of the mighty folk group Lankum, whose most recent release, The Livelong Day, has just been nominated for an RTÉ Choice Prize. During Lankum’s most recent Vicar St shows, Peat’s voice, enchanting stage presence and technical ability across her many instruments shone out as particularly impressive within the dark wildness of the band’s heavy stylings.
Needless to say, the event promises to showcase a vast variety of styles and disciplines, while also giving a high-profile platform to female artists working in Ireland today. Tickets range from €25 to €35.