Over one million people worldwide have viewed episodes of Other Voices: Courage, the recently launched new format of the long-running RTÉ live music show, which usually comes from Dingle
Other Voices: Courage, which streams on RTÉ.ie, Facebook, and YouTube, sees Irish artists perform from a series of well-known cultural locations across Ireland and has proved a huge hit with music fans during restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Ye Vagabonds, Colm Mac Con Iomaire, Lisa Hannigan, and Limerick's Denise Chaila have already played intimate shows from locations such as the National Gallery and on Thursday night, Frames frontman and solo artist Glen Hansard will perform from the Round Room at The National Library in Dublin.
The brainchild of Other Voices producer Philip King, the new show was created after artists and agencies came together in response to the pandemic.
Nine performances are being streamed in total, with more to follow and the series is a partnership between Intel, the Department of Culture, Gaeltacht and the Heritage, Other Voices and the South Wind Blows series.
Speaking on Morning Ireland on Thursday, King, who has produced Other Voices for 18 years, said, "We wanted to bring musicians together to play music for people that would give a salve and a succour and good heart and give us the courage to deal with the loss and the grief and isolation and also courage to face the future.
He added, "I believe that music is a magic potion and it has a magical effect if you like. We know that two million people have been touched by this Courage Other Voices piece and we know that a million people have viewed it and we know that the artists are just so delighted to raise their voices to sing in beautiful places like the National Gallery and the National Library and bring something magical to people."
Asked how long he thought it would be before artists would return to Dingle to film more performances for the regular Other Voices series, King said, "It is so, so difficult to say. We have been able to creature this new feature which can collapse distance between people and bring joy and solace to people.
"It’s going to be very, very difficult to work out what we’re going to be able to do and now we’re going to do it. But I think what we’ve created with the Other Voices Courage model is a model that observes all of the distancing protocols necessary to do this work safely and we’ve had comments from all over the world about that and I think this may become a model of what Other Voices may become. Hopefully we will come from Dingle at the end of the year."
Watch the latest episode of Courage, featuring Colm Mac Con Iomaire live in concert here, and catch up with previous episodes here.