Festival Shines a Spotlight on Songwriters 2017 

Over five days at the beginning of March, more than one hundred local and international artists will perform in thirty concerts at 13th United Airlines Belfast Nashville Songwriters Festival in the Clayton Hotel Belfast. Panarts have just launched their exciting music programme with special guest speaker, Roisin McDonough, CEO of the Arts Council NI.

Making a welcome return to BelNash is one of Ireland’s finest writers, Paul Brady who will be joined on stage by Declan O’Rourke and Nashville’s Grammy nominated Darrell Scott. A second unique show, ‘Paul Brady in Conversation’ is being recorded by BBC Radio Ulster’s Ralph McLean while Downtown Radio’s popular presenter Big T, Trevor Campbell will host Texas songbird Kimmie Rhodes at a special opening night concert on Wednesday 1st March. Award winning artist Paul Brady, Patron of Panarts said;

“Often overshadowed by the spotlight on the performer and singer, the annual Belfast-Nashville Festival provides an opportunity to bring song writing talent to the fore and to encourage talented new writers to join the ranks”

Local artists gracing the stage include Kaz Hawkins, Peter McVeigh, Ursula Burns and young rising star Ryan McMullan, fresh from working with Ed Sheeran and Foy Vance. Panarts Director Colin Magee said;

“When we started out twelve years ago to put songwriters centre stage and to showcase creative and musically gifted local artists, we could only dream of having such a fantastic festival line-up”

In a special ‘In the Round Concert’ Kimmie Rhodes shares a stage with Belfast’s Gareth Dunlop and Brian Houston. Nashville’s Mac McAnally will play the hit songs he wrote for Kenny Chesney, Alabama and Shenandoah, supported by the Forestside and Panarts Under Nineteen Writers. Triona Carville will launch her new single ‘Warrior’ on 3rdMarch, following on from her recent success in becoming Panarts Young Songwriter of the Year. The finalists from this annual award will also perform on stage with eight talented students from Belmont University Nashville.

Running alongside the concerts is the popular music industry conference, Panarts Song Writing Convention, now in its thirteenth year. Artists will share their song writing skills while PRS for Music and IMRO will answer questions about royalties, copyright and income streams for artists.

Tickets are on sale at www.belfastnashville.com Telephone 028 9024 6609 or box office, Visit Belfast Welcome Centre, Donegall Sq North. The annual BelNash Festival & Conference is funded by Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Arts & Business NI, Downtown Radio, United Airlines, Clayton Hotel Belfast, Forestside, Avalon Guitars, Dawsons Music and PRS for Music Foundation.

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