North Coast songstress, Hannah McPhillimy, sets her sights on New York
Rising star and singer-songwriter, Hannah McPhillimy, will perform at the Irish Arts Center in New York City on 9 March as part of their SongLives series, supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, British Council and the Northern Ireland Bureau.
The popular series, curated by Irish folk singer-songwriter and Grammy Award-winner, Susan McKeown, aims to showcase the most exciting contemporary singer-songwriters from Ireland and North America in an intimate setting inspired by the rich tradition of busking on Dublin’s Grafton Street. Hannah will be joined by another rising star from Ireland, Cat Dowling.
Originally hailing from Northern Ireland’s rugged North Coast, Belfast-based songwriter Hannah McPhillimy’s thoughtful music brings jazz-inflected indie warmth against a windswept backdrop. Her beguiling voice and ear for melody, paired with unguarded, reflective narratives, has prompted comparisons to other musicians including Feist, Regina Spektor and Daughter, all the while carving out her own distinctive path.
Since the launch of her debut EP Seeing Things in 2013, Hannah’s subsequent records have garnered acclaim for their diversity and ingenuity. She has worked with anti-slavery charity, No More Traffik, to record the a cappella collection Freedom Songs, launched at a sell-out gig at Belfast’s historic Crumlin Road Gaol. Most recently Hannah has teamed up with Belfast-based author, Jan Carson, to record Disappear Here, a set of songs inspired by Jan’s novel Malcolm Orange Disappears.
Rachael W. Gilkey, Director of Programming and Education, Irish Arts Center, New York City: “We are thrilled to kick off this season’s SongLives series with Hannah McPhillimy, whose talents as a singer and songwriter make her an artist on the rise and one to watch. We are pleased to give this Belfast-born musician a platform in NYC through the SongLives series, which celebrates the rich history of the singer songwriter tradition in Ireland.”
Sonya Whitefield, Arts Development Officer, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, commented: “The Arts Council is committed to providing our most talented artists with valuable and meaningful opportunities to develop their professional careers. We are delighted to collaborate with British Council and the NI Bureau in offering artists this platform with the Irish Arts Center in New York which not only provides outstanding opportunities the development of our artists but it also provides a stage for showcasing the high-quality of the arts here internationally.”
Artist Hannah McPhillimy, said of the opportunity: “I feel extremely honoured to be invited to play the SongLives series at the Irish Arts Center in New York, alongside Cat Dowling. Playing live and sharing your music with new audiences is lifeblood for musicians, and to have the opportunity to do so in one of the greatest cultural hubs in the world is really, very special.”
Hannah’s back catalogue of appearances includes RTE’s Other Voices, SXSW (Austin Texas) as well as supporting slots with The Gloaming, SOAK, Gungor and Foy Vance.