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Sean McCarthy Memorial Traditional Irish


Ballad Competition 2018


Download Ballad Competition Entry Form Here



The Final list for the Sean McCarthy Ballad Competition (Click Here)     


  1. Joe Harrington  (Pat McCarthy Singer)             (Lyrecrompane)            The Road John Murphy Made

  2. .John Kinsella                                                    (Listowel)                     The Old Scrapbook

  3.  Neil Brosnan                                                    (Listowel)                     Teampaillín Bán

  4.  Mick Brown                                                      (Galway)                      Tearing Down London & Digging Holes

  5. .Susan O Mahony                                             (Cork )                         Won’t you  Stay Awhile

  6. Tommy James/Eddie Lee                                 (Ballyheigue)                Old Friends & Fond Memories

  7. Jane Willow                                                      (Dublin)                        Sail Away

  8. James O Donohue                                            (Galway)                      Sons & Fathers

  9. Caroline O Callaghan                                        (Ardfert)                       Forever Forget Me Not

  10. Noelle O Sullivan                                              (Lixnaw)                       The Village of Lixnaw.

  11. Frank Flynn                                                       (Dublin)                       These are the Days

  12. Mary Lavery Carrig                                             (Tarbert)                     Tarbert Island’s Girls & Boys.

  13. .Tony Geoghegan/Jacqui Mangan                      (Ardagh)                     Sweet Old Mill

  14. Peter Keenan (Paul Hatton Singer)                    (Wicklow)                    Blessington Rose


Final List for the Mick McCarthy Storytelling Competition 2018


  • Sonny Eagan                Lixnaw                         Martin The Bottles Tells A Story

  • Daisy Kearney              Ballyhahill                    Minding The House

  • John Carew                  Holycross                    The County Final

  • Marie Gillen                  Cork                            Nancy Mai

  • Francis Kennedy          Listowel                       Tom The Gander

  • Mary O Keeffe              Co Limerick                 Back Home

  • Paddy Commane         Clare                            My First Day at School

  • Tom Moore                   Moyvane                     The Two Drunks

  • Bridget Brady               Armagh                        Ballygown Biddy                  

  • Mike Flahive                Ballybunion                   Pigs Jump

  • Vincent Kiley                Thurles                        Tom Mahers Gift

  • Vincent Pierse              Roscommon                Bridgie and Lizzie
  • James Fogarty              Moyvane                     Turf Spade





Rules of the Ballad Competition

  • Closing date for entries for the Ballad competition is Friday 13th July 2018
  • Entries to be submitted on CD, with 3 typed copies (or in very clear handwriting). Also include your email address.
  • Entries to be accompanied by cheque/postal order for €25.00
  • No entries will be returned
  • Name, Address and Telephone number to be clearly written on tape cover and back of each copy of lyrics.
  • Finalists will perform their entry in Finuge at Teach Siamsa on Saturday 4th August 2018 @ 8.30pm
  • The over all winner and runner-up will be decided then.
  • Entries may be in English or Irish and no more than 2 musicians to accompany the performer.
  • Entries must be original and not previously performed or published.
  • No in-house music supplied by committee.
  • No pre-recorded backing music allowed.
  • Adjudicators’ decision is final  [3 Judges].
  • Make Cheques or Postal Orders to Sean McCarthy Weekend.
  • Performances on the night of the Final may be recorded and/or videod at the Committees discretion. Such recordings may be played/transmitted on the sound and visual media, eg radio, television, internet etc. entrants are deemed to have given their permission for same unless otherwise indicated by them to the Committee

Send Entries to ...

Peggie O Connell, Irremore, Listowel Co. Kerry

phone: 068 40203 / Mobile: 087 9049371


Enquiries: Bridget O Connor

Tel: 087 6250516





Rules for the Mick McCarthy All Ireland Story Telling Competition

Once Upon A Time......

Downlown Rules For Mick McCarthy Story Telling Competition

  • The story must be Irish in character and told in a local style

  • Hand writing must be clear and all entries must be clearly marked “Story Telling” on envelope, or you can just send the Title for the "Story Telling" Competition you are going to perform.

  • Entries must be received no later than 20th July 2018

  • Final will take place on Sunday Night 5th August in Teach Siamsa Finuge at 8.30pm

  • An Entry fee of €10 must be paid

  • The theme can be humorous, serious or a mixture of both, historic and true to tradition.

  • The length of the story must be a minimum of 3 minutes and a maximum of 6 minutes.

Marking system

  • Accuracy and fluency of speed 40%

  • Irish content (humorous, serious, historical) 40%

  • Confidence/Serenity 20%

Story Telling and Adjudication Criteria



Clear narrative is put across; characters, places and events are well developed and described with a creative use of language.


There is a sense of character and style in the telling.  Audience interest is kept throughout with natural flow and “fireside” ease and with humour or emotion where appropriate.

Interpretation and /or originality

New stories and old stories are welcome and can be on any topic or theme and Irish in character.  Key considerations should be….

  • Has an original story been well conveyed?

  • Has an old story been re-imagined and / or delivered creatively?

  • Has a new story been created and told in the traditional Irish style and of good standard?


For the purposes of scheduling, tellers are required to keep their stories between 3 and 6 minutes in duration in competition. Judges may deduct points if competitors run over