ABAIR 2022 is an international multimedia project exploring the oral traditions of Ireland and their links to our closest neighbours in Scotland, Wales, France and Spain.
Curated by traditional singer and producer Macdara Yeates, the piece endeavours to retrace a series of historical journeys to and from Ireland by way of the songs and stories left in their wake.
The process begins with a quartet of short documentaries (directed by award-winning filmmaker Bob Gallagher) in which Macdara and crew travel to visit the Civil War battlefields of Andalusia, the potato farms of North Eastern Scotland and more, meeting a variety of singers and oral historians along the way to investigate their place in the Irish story. Later, during the celebrations of the St. Patrick’s Festival, the project invites Scottish, Welsh, French and Spanish artists to Dublin perform with a variety of Irish artists and complete the cycle of history.
Taken from the Irish word meaning both ‘to say’ and ‘to sing’ Abair is a staple oral traditions programme in the St. Patrick’s Festival. First beginning as a concert series in historic venues around Dublin city, Abair, now in its fourth year, broadens its scope to look outward and examine the influence of our neighbours on our native song and storytelling traditions.