Top country stars for Matchmaking Festival

Top country stars for Matchmaking Festival


*Keep an eye on our Facebook page for your chance to win tickets to the first weekend of the Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival.


The biggest stars of the Irish country music scene will headline this year’s ‘Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival’ in September.  

Lisa McHugh, Declan Nerney and Gerry Guthrie, will perform on the opening weekend of the festival on the 31st August to 1st September followed by Mike Denver, Derek Ryan and Cliona Hagan on the 7th and 8th September at the Marquee.

Marcus White, Managing Director of the White Hotel Group said: “The country music events are now in their third year at Lisdoonvarna and have been hugely successful. They have really revitalised the festival and brought a whole new younger audience to the events. It’s really put us back on the map in a big way.”

The Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is one of Ireland’s oldest festivals, at over 160 years old and takes place over a five week period. It attracts over 80,000 people from all over the world who come for the music, the dancing and to meet third generation matchmaker Willie Daly.

““It’s a unique festival not only in Ireland but internationally, as people are still intrigued by the ancient tradition of matchmaking, in a world where online dating has become so popular,” Mr White added.

This year’s festival is jam-packed with entertainment, with music and dancing in all venues in every day in September from 11am in the morning to late. The traditional dance weekends are on the 14th-16th September, 21nd -23rd September and 28th – 30th September featuring some of Ireland’s leading show bands who will play at the Hydro and Imperial Hotels.

These include Teddy and Cathal Barry, Outa Diesel, Blue Ridge Country, the Moynihan Brothers, Michael Sexton, Pat Dowling and the Lisdoonvarna Showband. Ireland’s top soul singer Buck Taylor is also back to play the Hydro Hotel every Saturday in September.

The popular tea dances at the historic Spa Wells are back again this year between 12-2pm with Larry McEvoy and his band.

The Lisdoonvarna matchmaking festival kicks off on the 31st August and runs for five weeks until the 30th September. For tickets for the country music events go to and for general information go to

The Festival is sponsored by Clare County Council and Fáilte Ireland.

Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.