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Host of musical stars line up to aid grief support service for kids


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

Host of musical stars line up to aid grief support service for kids Host of musical stars line up to aid grief support service for kids

A host of musical stars from all corners of the entertainment industry will share a stage next week to raise funds for a Galway charity that offers a unique grief support service for children.

Concert for Hope, in aid of HopeSpace – the Children’s Grief Support Service – takes place in the Galway Bay Hotel, Salthill, next Thursday, April 11, with a night of exceptional music helping to raise funds for and awareness of this relatively new service.

Loughrea-born singer/songwriter Ultan Conlon tops the bill, fresh from the success of his critically acclaimed album, the Starlight Ballroom, and he is joined by the Kiltullagh Community Choir – under the Musical Direction of Ciaran Cannon – the Opacas, the Bluebirds, and the virtuoso musical talent, Colohan, joined by Aileen Henderson.

Special guest on the night is singer/songwriter, Johnny Duhan.

And it’s all in aid of HopeSpace, a service which opened its doors in February 2023 in SCCUL Enterprise Centre in Ballybane.

HopeSpace provides a warm, homely space where children and teens can share their thoughts and worries about grief in total confidence with a trained empathetic Listening Volunteer.

The concert aims to raise funds for the service, but also to provide a greater public awareness of its work.

Top of the bill is Ultan Conlon whose songwriting is matched by his powerful yet melancholy voice that critics have likened to the great Roy Orbison.

Ultan has shared the stage with the likes of Jackson Browne, Shelby Lynne, John Fogerty, Mary Coughlan, Lisa Hannigan, Mark Geary, David Kitt and the Four of Us – and he also plays and teaches classical guitar.

The Kiltullagh Community Choir have been performing soul, gospel and classic hits together for the past 15 years, under the leadership of Michael McGloin and Musical Direction of Ciaran Cannon – raising significant funds for charities during this time.

The Opacas – Mike McLoughlin, Joe Treacy, Peter Tobin, Pat Boyle and Steve Talbot – were formed online during the Covid-19 lockdowns. What started as a fun remote collaboration developed into a fun real-life collaboration, playing Americana, original songs and exceptional cover versions.

The Bluebirds are Galway-based singers Jenny Groarke, Laura Lynn, and Lorraine Flanagan. Since forming in 2012, their spellbinding three-part close harmonies have captivated audiences. Weaving together folk, jazz, and choral influences, sparse accompaniment letting their voices shine, creating a sound both sweet and haunting.

Galway city native COLOHAN has quickly emerged as a rising star in the music world. With his remarkable guitar skills and heartfelt performances, he has left audiences in awe on renowned stages across Ireland including the INEC, The Wexford Opera House, the Cork Opera House and also many venues abroad.

There may be more artists added to the bill as the week goes on – but either way it promises to be a night to remember to sate all musical tastes!

The event takes place next Thursday, April 11, at the Galway Bay Hotel. Doors open at 7pm; the show begins at 8pm, and tickets at €20 plus booking fee are available by searching online for ‘Eventbrite Concert for Hope tickets’. You can also learn more about the charity’s work at

Pictured: Ultan Conlon: topping the bill.


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