Mike Kenny Remembrance Weekend August 10th & 11th

The late Mike Kenny, (1956-2011)  ©Photograph: John Reidy

The Mike Kenny Remembrance Weekend Committee wish to announce that their weekend will go ahead albeit with a reduced line up of events.

“Unfortunately, the committee was unsuccessful in securing support from the Kerry County Council Community Support Fund and Kerry County Council Creative Communities Awards Scheme and therefore we cannot run the Children’s Art Workshop or the children’s busking competition this year,” according to a statement from spokesman, Ted Kenny.

Not Drawn Down

“The committee did receive an offer of €300 in funding from the council’s arts department but this money on its own will fall well short of the required amount and will not be drawn down.

“The committee has secured musician Donal Murphy from Abbeyfeale. Donal honed his skills locally in Pats Brodeick’s Shoemakers Inn back in the 80s when, along with his brothers Kevin and Seán they would join in the regular Tuesday night session anchored by John Brosnan.

Pleased to be Asked

“Mike Kenny would have been a regular at these sessions and Donal was very pleased to have been asked and we are delighted to have him. Donal will be joined on the night by his son, Eoin on guitar,” said Ted.

Ted Kenny will again be sponsoring the Mike Kenny Young Musician of the Year Award now in its seventh year.

Programme of Events

The line up of events is as follows: Friday August 10th at 9.30pm. Donal and Eoin Murphy in Browne’s Bar, sponsored by Peter Browne.

Saturday, August 11th at 9pm: Presentation of the Mike Kenny Young Musician of the Year Award 2018 in Browne’s Bar – sponsored by Ted Kenny.

Tribute from a Niece

Soon after his untimely death in August 2011 the late Mike Kenny’s neice Melanie Brick wrote the following tribute to an uncle she admired and looked up to.

Henry Ward Beecher wrote “Every artist dips his brush in his own soul; and paints his own nature into his pictures.”

By Melanie Brick

This truism comes to mind when we think of Mike Kenny.The biography of Mike’s life tells us only the marginal details of what he materially achieved.

His degree in fine art from the National College of Art and Design enhanced his already bourgeoning creativity.

Teaching Roles

Revelling in the company of others, Mike expounded a number of teaching roles with both children and adults.

His calligraphy work dots the Kerry landscape in the form of various signed facias.Mike had an insatiable curiosity for the world.

His visiting art lectureship in Des Moines, Iowa allowed him to explore the world of the native American Indians.

Animated About Art

Indigenous peoples and their worlds fascinated him. In fact all of life fascinated him. It is true that his creative expression was really elevated when he began to mold clay.

He spoke with animation about art and in particular sculpture. The nuances and subtleties of understanding form and muscle drove his need for perfection – it had to be right.

Expression in Sculptures

Evidence of this knowledge found expression in his sculptures of Patrick 0’Keeffe in Scartaglin in 1983; Johnny 0 ‘Leary in Killarney in 2007 and Seán Ó Riada in Cúl Aodha in 2008.

His understanding of the transience of the human body belied his deep spirituality and unparalleled belief in the after life.

It is apt that his three fine sculptures should commemorate gifted Irish musicians; considering Mike’s deep love of traditional Irish music and his instrumental work in establishing the Patrick 0’Keeffe Traditional Music Festival in 1993 in Castleisland.

Keen Historian

A keen historian, Mike co-founded the Castleisland and District Culture and Heritage Society in 2006 and wrote for the Kerry Archaeological Magazine.

Quiz master and quiz team participant extraordinaire; he revelled in an erudite challenge and was as much at ease discussing cubism as he was Munster rugby.

Intensely Social Personality

Humble and yet simultaneously proud, Mike had an ability to draw people towards him. His intensely social personality never masked the subtle and gentle man who lived by his own unique philosophy.

Mike is the inspiration for this remembrance festival weekend. His life, work and creativity will be celebrated on the seventh anniversary of his death.


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