Tipperary Acts Bid For Record Deal In ‘All-Ireland Music Competition’

–       Semi-Final/Final to take place on 4/5 January

–       Recording contract awaits winning act

–       Judges include Mercury Music Winner Gemma Hayes from Tipperary

Four acts from County Tipperary will be hoping to achieve a lifelong dream and secure a recording contract when they participate in the final stages of the All-Ireland Music Competition on January 4-5th next, details of which were announced today.

The musicians and singers are amongst 16 acts from all over Ireland who will compete in the Semi-Final of the competition on January 4th at the West County Hotel, Ennis, Co Clare. The acts, will be seeking to reach the Final of the inaugural competition at the same venue on January 5th.

Mercury Music Winner and Hot Press Best Female Artist Gemma Hayes from Ballyporeen and Eurovision winnerPaul Harrington will judge the acts that emerged from regional heats to qualify for the latter stages of the competition. A recording contract and TMI representation awaits the winning act.

The competition, which is hosted by Talent Management International (TMI) Ireland and sponsored by Shannon Development and the Shannon Region Conference & Sports Bureau, has attracted significant interest since it was launched in April. Hundreds of acts participated in Regional Heats in Limerick, Dublin, Galway and Ennis with just 16 acts successfully making it through to next month’s Semi-Final stage.

Amongst the Tipperary acts taking part is Michelle O’Dwyer from Clonoulty, Kate O’Toole, Michelle Revins from Templemore, and Nenagh four-piece Penny Wentworth.

Darragh Galligan, Managing Director & Talent Manager with TMI Ireland explained: “The level of interest that this Competition has attracted from around Ireland during recent months has been exceptional. Furthermore, the numbers that participated in the regional heats has brought home to us the wealth of talent that exists in this country. We are confident that this Competition will produce a very successful music recording artist and we are happy to be able to play a supporting role in this.”

“We are delighted that music icons Paul Harrington and Gemma Hayes are part of the Judging Panel. Paul will also perform at the Semi-Final and Gemma will perform during the Final in Ennis. Their endorsement of and participation in this competition will no doubt help to inspire and instil confidence in our 16 finalists,” Mr. Galligan added.

According to Paul Ryan, Tourism Marketing Manager, Shannon Development: “We are very excited to be involved with this competition, which showcases some of the country’s brightest up and coming musical talents. Along with the Shannon Region Conference & Sports Bureau, Shannon Development is delighted to be able to attract a high profile national event such as this to the Shannon Region. The All-Ireland Music Competition is one of 165 cultural and music events that take place in the Region each year accounting for over 300,000 visitors. We wish all the participants the very best of January 4th and 5th, 2013.”

About the Tipperary performers:

Michelle Revins:

Michelle from Templemore has been singing and performing since she was 7. She possesses a wealth of musical experience which consists of a strong musical theatre background, having performed in local musical and drama societies from a young age.  She says her main musical influences consist of jazz, blues, soul and contemporary folk. She is currently a student in Dublin’s newest contemporary music college, BIMM Dublin.

Michelle O’Dwyer:

From Clonoulty, Michelle is currently living in Nenagh. She has one child, eight year old Oran. She works in a butchers part-time nut her true passion lies with music. She joined a band ‘Royal Flush’ as a lead singer when she was 21 before joining a number of ABBA tribute bands. The singer-songwriter now performs solo gigs around Nenagh. Her musical influences include Sheryl Crow, Amy MacDonald & Nanci Griffith.

Penny Wentworth:

Penny Wentworth are a four piece band from Nenagh. The band was founded by Tom Bán (Guitar/vocals). The name “Penny Wentworth” was taken from the phrase “every penny that went towards it was worth it”. Tom had been writing songs and poetry for many years but always wanted to put a band in place. After a few line up changes in September of 2012 Tom and Patrick O’ Meara (Drummer/vocalist) teamed up with sisters Michelle Hennessy (Bass/vocals) and Yvonne Richardson (Keyboard/vocals). With the songs already in place the band took to the rehearsal room and quickly evolved in to a very promising and exciting new act.

Penny Wentworth’s sound is filled with melodies and crosses over many music styles which is very noticeable in the band’s debut EP titled “Six Tales” recorded in April 2012. A video for the track “Don’t Say” can be found on YouTube and “Six Tales” along with other live video’s can be found on the bands Facebook page. To date the band have supported acts such as Gemma Hayes, High Kings and up and coming Belfast band RunawayGo, and with gigs in Whelan’s, The Mercantile, INEC Killarney along with many other venues around the country 2012 has been a very productive year for the band. In recent months, the band have also been involved in the “All Ireland Music Competition” and have successfully qualified for the semi-finals which take place in the West County Hotel in Ennis on January 4th.

Kate O Toole:

Kate O’Toole is one half of the duo, Double Fever, which also features Samantha Smith from Oldcastle in County Meath.

The 12 other acts taking part include By Chance (Dublin/Laois), Deanie (Dublin), Thomas Dormer (Clare), Aobhin Pollard (Dublin), Niamh Brady (Cork), Katelyn Molloy (Galway), Shawn Mullen (Laois), Men in Slacks (Dublin), Elizabeth Cunningham (Kilkenny), Stephen Tallon (Wexford), Elaine Devoy (Cavan) and Kevin McCarthy (Limerick).

For more on the All Ireland Music Competition and for details on tickets for the Semi-Final and Final, visitwww.aimc.ie. Follow the progress of the 16 finalists on the AIMC Facebook site, www.facebook.com/AllIrelandMusicCompetition.

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