RTÉ Radio 1 Music Specials

RTÉ Radio 1 Music Specials

Music Passport: Journey Through Genocide in Rwanda

Christmas specials from music and entertainment on RTE Radio 1

There's lots of choice and programmes to enjoy as part of RTE Radio 1's Christmas line-up. From life with the Kray Twins behind the scenes at the Bord Gais Energy theatre, to Donal Ryan's specially commissioned piece where he imagines life for a refugee to novelist Joseph O'Connor's Christmas memories. Lisa Hannigan is In Session, Robert Mizzell sings some of his wonderful songs and tells stories of his life and it's take-over time for Late Date with guests such as Joe Brolly, Leo Varadkar, Aoibhinn McGinnity and Deirdre O'Kane taking the mic. 

Christmas Eve

2pm          Santa

Santa Claus joins Derek Mooney live from the North Pole to take calls and messages from the children of Ireland with their Christmas wish lists.

5.15pm          Driving Home For Christmas                                                       

Wherever you are off to this afternoon, Cathal Murray will be playing the songs to accompany you on your way home.

8pm                A Musical Christmas                                       

Ted Courtney takes you on a magical musical journey of the finest Christmas music ever recorded – from Bach to Harry Belefonte.             

Christmas Day                  

11am                     Creedon’s Christmas                                     

Join John Creedon for his special Christmas show, live from the RTE studios in Cork.

1.15pm                 Into the Mystic – an Irish Christmas                        

Joseph O’Connor presents his thoughts on Christmas, the sights and sounds of an Irish Christmas from dawn at Newgrange to a busy O’Connell street.

3.45pm                 Daniel O’Donnell’s Christmas     

Join Daniel for his own Christmas memories and music.

3pm                       In Session – Lisa Hannigan

Lisa Hannigan and her band play an exclusive show for RTE Radio 1 listeners.

5pm         The South Wind Blows

Philip King presents from the Dingle peninsula and playing his choice of music.

6pm         Pantisocracy      

Miss Panti Bliss welcomes guests into her festive parlour for witty, intelligent, engaging and, often frank, conversation.

8pm         The Best Of Mooney Tunes

Derek Mooney celebrates more than a decade of Mooney Tunes concerts with touching tales and musical memories.

9pm       Sandy’s Country Christmas

Sandy Harsch presents a festive edition of her country music show.

St Stephen’s Day

10pm     Sisters Are Doing It

Songwriters - Sandy Harsch and Lilian Smith return with their award-winning series which places women central to the history of music. Tonight they look at songwriters, the women behind the lyrics.

11pm       Late Date Takeover        

The legendary slot is taken-over by special guests this week... the studio is theirs. Tonight it’s the turn of Gaelic football pundit and broadcaster Joe Brolly.

Tuesday 27th December                               

1.30pm          Grace – the Story Behind The Song

2pm                Robert Mizzell’s Country Home

The story of Irish Country Music star Robert Mizzell’s emotional return to Louisiana – where he recalls his difficult childhood and reconnects with his musical roots.

10pm     Sisters Are Doing It

All In The Family - Sandy Harsch and Lilian Smith return with their award-winning series which places women central to the history of music. Tonight they look at the families who have made music together.

11pm       Late Date Takeover        

The legendary slot is taken-over by special guests this week... the studio is theirs. Tonight it’s the turn of member of the Fine Gael front bench, minister for social protection Leo Varadkar.

Wednesday 28th December        

1.30pm          I Seek Refuge

Novelist Donal Ryan imagines life for those who have been forced to flee their homes.

2pm                The Clare Sound with Luka Bloom

John Murray spends the day with singer-songwriter Luka Bloom who shows him around North Clare and meets some of those making music in the area.

10pm     In search of The Blue Nile

Ken Sweeney meet The Blue Nile and their devoted fans. Hailed for their melancholic perfection the band only released four albums in two decades but their reputation continues to grow.

11pm       Late Date Takeover        

The legendary slot is taken-over by special guests this week... the studio is theirs. Tonight it’s the turn of actor Aoibhinn McGinnity.

Thursday 29th December                              

1.30pm          Life with the Kray Twins

Maureen Flanagan – the sister the Kray Twins never had -  on forty years with two of Britain’s most vicious and notorious gangsters.

2pm                A Year In The Life of the Bord Gais Energy Theatre

Bronagh Gallagher captures the drama on stage and behind the scenes over a year in Ireland’s largest theatre.

10pm     Moyvalley Festival

Shay Byrne presents highlights from the country music festival.

11pm       Late Date Takeover        

The legendary slot is taken-over by special guests this week... the studio is theirs. Tonight it’s the turn of actor and comedian Deirdre O’Kane.

Friday 30th December                    

1.30pm          Callan’s Kicks of the Year

Oliver Callan and his team return with a final fling of 2016, the last chance to poke fun and satirise the great and the not so good in Irish life.

2pm                Final Partings    

Jim Lockhart and his panel remembers the music stars who passed away this year...

10pm     Moyvalley Fesitval

Shay Byrne presents highlights from the country music festival.

Saturday 31st December

10am            Second Captains              

The team are back with all the usual sporting chat and banter.

8pm                The Trip to Tipp

Will Leahy remembers the Thurles festival that defined all festivals in Ireland in 1990.

10pm      New Year’s Eve show

John Creedon welcomes in a brand new year.

Sunday 1st January

1pm                The Reluctant Nobel

A celebration of Bob Dylan, his life, work, music and this year’s Nobel Prize for literature.

Monday 2nd January       

9am              Reasons to be Cheerful

Join Marty Morrissey and guests as they look forward to 2017 and ponder the many and varied reasons they have to be happy as they enter the new year.

1.30pm           A Place Called Home

Young Irish emigrants from all over the world speak to Colm Flynn about their hopes, fears and ambitions for the year ahead.

2pm                Sure ’Twas Better...

... In the 70s. Will Hanafin and his guests trawl the RTE radio archive to ask if life really was better in the old days... just how different were our attitudes to sex, religion and race and are misty-eyes and a nose for nostalgia essential when thinking about the past? 




Music Passport: Journey Through Genocide in Rwanda

Music Passport: Journey Through Genocide in Rwanda

Music has always played an important role in the civil, economic and social life of Rwanda. Throughout the genocide it became a tool of propaganda, through the songs of artists who were working on behalf of the government implementing the killings.

 JP Samputu is a leading Rwandan artist who works hard to contribute to the positive stories of peace love and forgiveness. He himself struggled throughout the genocide, and is an amazing ambassador for forgiveness and reconciliation.

Mighty Popo, also known as Jacques Murigande is hugely influential in Rwanda, and beyond. He began life as a refugee in Burundi born to Rwandan parents, before emigrating to Canada where he went big on the blues scene. He is currently living in Rwanda with his wife Bea, and their two children. He is founder of the Kigali Up Music festival, and involved in the setting up of the Government’s first ever music school which aims to improve the music industry in Rwanda.


 Ntali, Popo’s son with Kathryn

The Oakdale Music School in Kigali was set up by American Marlene Lee, and is now under the directorship of Aimable Nsabayesu. The school itself is a pot of positivity with young musicians improving their musicianship in a range of instruments. Nsabayesu believes music should be reclaimed for positive means, and he has built a beautiful school that was a real treat to visit. They have visiting music teachers from all over the world, who come and give of their time.

Sophie Nzayisenga

We met with popular artists Knowless and Christopher. You can find out more of their music at Kina Music

When looking at how music has contributed to the healing of relations between people in Rwanda, we visited Solace Ministries where we met with Jean Gakwandi. For more about Solace Ministries

Chris Nicholson from Musicians Without Borders brought us to visit their project in Kigali.

Dicken Marshall set up Rafiki Records in Rwanda and currently works with many artists in East Africa. He is currently based in Addis Ababa.

Irishman Neil Goodwin, is a nomadic world music enthusiast and energy consultant. He is currently working on a very interesting project to use music to promote the benefits of solar energy and publicise the dangers of kerosene gas.

Sophie Nzayisenga is Rwanda’s leading inanga player and tours Africa extensively. Her music is sublime. You can take a look at her here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WveOfLJfZpE

Mike Kayihura is currently signed to Rafiki Records. Having grown up all over East Africa he is writing some really original music. Definitely one to watch.

Musician and producer Albert Rudatsimburwa is the Director of Contact FM, one of Rwanda’s leading commercial stations. Having returned to Rwanda in 1994 after almost 30 years, he is really adding to the creative economy through his music and media production.

We also spoke with singing legends Makanyaga and Mariye Yahani.

 Mariye Yahani

Producer: Elizabeth Laragy




Ways to Listen

Radio Player