Making his first Irish TV performance in 26 years, Van Morrison will be among the artists to honour President Michael D Higgins in a special one-hour show of music and the arts on TG4 to mark his 80th birthday later this month.
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Ómós - Michael D @ 80 will be aired on the Irish language channel on the day of the President's milestone birthday on April 18th at 9.30pm and worldwide on TG4.ie.
It will see Ireland's poets, singers, musicians, thinkers, playwrights, and dancers celebrate his political and philosophical ideals.
Morrison will send greetings to President Higgins from Belfast with a rendition of his classic song Burning Ground.
Following her recent chart success with the Sawdoctors' hit N17, Nigerian born, Tullamore raised Tolü Makay will perform her song Don't Let Go with her four-piece band, from Rathfarnham Castle in Dublin.
Also taking part in the birthday celebrations are Iarla Ó Lionáird and Steve Cooney, De Dannan’s Frankie Gavin and Mairtín O'Connor, who team up in Galway Town Hall Theatre, and harpist and current TG4 Gradam Ceoil Musician of the Year Laoise Kelly, who performs the 17th century melody Caitlín Triail, alongside two jigs from the gardens of the Irish Museum of Modern Art.
Sibéal Ní Chasaide will also perform with Séamus Ó Flatharta and his sister Caoimhe, while four-time all-Ireland champion melodeon player Emma Corbett collaborates with dancer Sibéal Davitt, for a specially commissioned performance of Sean nós dance.
Paddy Keenan of the Bothy Band also joins Gradam Ceoil TG4 Singer of the Year 2019 Thomas McCarthy to perform a rendition of Donal Kenny.
As well as his lifelong love and support of the arts, President Higgins has been a champion of those on the fringes of society and within traditional Irish music, and the show will include an appreciation of Traveller culture’s huge contribution to trad music in Ireland.
Former president of Ireland Mary Robinson, Director General of TG4 Alan Esslemont, Druid Theatre Director Garry Hynes, playwright and director Darach Mac Con Iomaire, former Vice-President at NUI, Galway Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh, and senator and barrister Ivana Bacik will also pay homage to the President on the show.