A Springtime of Irish Music and Song

Orla McCue

Orla McCague, Irish Studies Fulbright student, begins our Springtime Irish concert series on February 8 & 9.

Orla McCague is a fiddle and piano player from County Monaghan, Ireland. Growing up in a community surrounded by traditional Irish music, Orla started playing fiddle at the age of 8 and has participated in many feiseanna and fleadhanna, in both solo and group competitions. Orla has won county medals and several regional instrumental awards, as well as receiving 2nd place in the All-Ireland piano accompaniment competition.

Orla studied music and Irish in Maynooth University, focusing on traditional fiddle as her first study, while also completing her Senior Certificate on piano. Having a background in both classical and traditional styles has greatly added to Orla’s abilities as a music co-ordinator and high-school department leader back in Ireland.

Orla is a well-travelled musician, having played at festivals in Poland, Sweden, Scotland and England before coming to the U.S. She enjoys teaching, playing at sessions, learning new tunes and singing on occasion!

Orla is delighted to be part of the traditional Irish music scene in Montana. She has become involved in music events way beyond her Fulbright commitments. Orla would especially like to thank John for the use of his fiddle, as her musical opportunities here in Montana would be minimal without it.

Music will open doors that a key could never open.


The visiting musicians from Ireland will play Missoula and Butte, as well as making presentations to local high school music students. This is a new development we hope will encourage more youth to get involved in Irish music and the Irish Studies program. The following is the lineup and dates of the concerts.

  • Fiddle - Orla McCague, Feb. 8 in Missoula; Feb 9 in Butte
  • Accordion - Danny O’Mahony, Feb. 22 in Missoula; Feb. 24 in Butte
  • Uillinn Pipes - Eoin Ó Riabhaigh, March 10 in Missoula; March 9 in Butte
  • Music and Song - Liam Ó Maonlaí, March 24 in Missoula; March 23 in Butte

Tickets cost:

  • $15 general admission
  • $13 for Friends of Irish Studies members and seniors
  • $5 for students
  • $45 for a season package

Tickets are available for purchase online at friendsofirishstudies.com, or purchase them at Rockin Rudy’s in Missoula and at the Granite Mountain Bank and Cavanaugh's County Celtic in Butte.