The IMRO Live Music Venue of the Year Awards happened at their HQ in Dublin last night. Who got the gongs, you ask?
The National Venue of the Year went to Wexford’s National Opera House.
The regional awards for outstanding venues went out thusly:
Dublin – Vicar Street
Rest of Leinster – Watergate Theatre, Kilkenny
Connacht – The Quays, Galway
Munster – Coughlan’s, Cork
Ulster – Voodoo, Letterkenny, Co Donegal
IMRO Music Festival of the Year: Sea Sessions, Bundoran
IMRO Small Live Music Festival 2016: Kilkenny Tradfest
IMRO Tech Crew of the Year: The Olympia
IMRO Outstanding Contribution to Live Music: Frank Murray (manager of Thin Lizzy/The Pogues)
Special commendations were also handed out to venues by Hot Press head Niall Stokes:
“It has been an outstanding year for live music in Ireland. That is, of course, true in relation to what is happening in the big venues, like The Olympia Theatre, which has just been refurbished with spectacular results, and at festivals – which are so important to the ongoing health of Irish music.
But from the point of view of working Irish musicians, it is really encouraging also to see the emergence of venues in smaller towns around the country, where they can go and gig – and both find an audience and earn their wages. Which is why I am so pleased to have presented awards tonight to Mike The Pies in Listowel and Boyle’s of Slane.
It is the hard work and dedication of the people who make things happen in venues and bars like these – and countless others around the country – that make all the difference. Long may they flourish.”