Maria Doyle Kennedy describes herself as a Mother/Singer/Actor/Director.

Her new album, the seventh on her own label Mermaid Records, is slated for release on Sept 25th. The first track from it - Pride - is currently on release.

Acting-wise, she has just finished working on cult TV show Orphan Black, of which she was a founding cast member and her directorial debut, a short film entitled A Different Kind of Day, will premiere at the Galway Film Fleadh in July.

Maria is performing at the very special Maevefest in Ramelton, Co. Donegal this Saturday (July 1st).

FILM:

I was a bit late to this party but I finally got to see Hunt for the Wilderpeople recently. What a beautiful film... heartfelt, tender, a sad moment or two , encouraging but most of all JOYFUL. It never slops into sentimentality and ultimately offers hope, hope in people and in relationships. ❤️

MUSIC:

I am not a natural Spotify user, and it has taken me quite a while to navigate the new ways of finding new music. There are great curators/bloggers/sign-showers out there and Twitter eventually led me to some, who pointed me towards more. I am LOVING the incredible music coming out of Ireland at the moment. On constant rotate are Ships, Overhead the Albatross, Katie Kim, Radie Peat, Come On Live Long and the Rusangano Family. All the tunes you'll ever need...

BOOK:

Kevin Barry's City of Bohane transported me completely. I was IN the book. I saw every hill and building, every colour of mood that crossed a face, every seam on a waistcoat. I was walking around Smoketown in my dreams for weeks and eventually wrote a song (Ladies of Bohane) inspired by the extraordinary and devastating women from the book Girly, Macu and Jenny Ching. I'm just about to start reading it again...

PLAY:

I saw a piece called Land of a Thousand Welcomes in the Samuel Beckett Theatre a couple of weeks ago. It was devised by TY students from Mount Temple school, and it was literally one of the best pieces of theatre I have ever seen. Deeply moving, provocative, funny, never preachy or overly earnest. I hope they get to perform it again (part of Dublin Fringe, maybe?) - it would do folks good to see it and start some conversations.THIS IS POPBABY are always worth investigating and their #RIOT show is coming back to Vicar St next month. I saw it at the Fringe and it was fantastic.

TV:

I binge watched Transparent and cannot wait for the next season. Incredible performances, particularly Jeffrey Tambor and Kathryn Hahn (what a Goddess) and great, great storylines about deeply flawed, selfish people. It's been a total revelation for me. A game changer. Everyone I know adores Fleabag, so that is the next thing to make for.

ART:

I seem to be craving colour... I love colour... but even more so than usual, I need to see depth and contast - the elevation of a certain pink or red. Maybe it's a reaction to the bleak political landscape we are facing. I was lucky enough to see James Turrell's light installation at LACMA earlier this year. You can only stay in for 8 mins at a time. I would go every day if I lived nearby. It made being in the world feel different, better.

GIG:

I saw Radiohead play in the Olympia in 1996, a sort of secret gig. I will never forget it. I (and most of the 1,000 or so other people who were there) cried. Gigs can do all kinds of things, offer comfort, dancing, connection, maybe the odd weep... but mostly I am looking to not think, to be lost in music. I will try my damnedest to see Fleet Foxes when they're here soon. 

RADIO:

I start with RTÉ Radio 1 early in the morning and, depending who is on Morning Ireland, may disturb my neighbours with roaring... I mostly listen to current affairs, but Raidió na life play great tunes and I love KEXP out of Seattle, too.

TECH:

I'm not great in the tech/app department AT ALL, but I did discover and fall in love with twitter 😊 and through that found my way to some great folks who are turning the world on to music and books and all kinds of things... @Nialler9 is finding great tunes to share, @tpoeblog (ThePointOfEverything) also with great tunes, and @dineensparish and @arbutusyarns have made a few episodes of a beautiful collaborative project worth seeking out called This Ain't No Disco.

THE NEXT BIG THING:

I had the great pleasure of directing a young actor called Tony Doyle recently. We worked on a short film together, so it is just a chance to see a tiny slice of what he is capable of... which is a lot. He's wonderful.

Maria Doyle Kennedy headlines Maevefest 2017, a day of events in aid of Donegal Hospice, taking place in Ramelton Town Hall, Co. Donegal, on Saturday July 1st - details here