Kate brings her
aunts’ story to life
THIS Monday 6 February
2023, the first annual holiday dedicated to St Brigid, a
tribute will be paid to a Dublin woman who blazed a
trail during the 1916 Rising. Carndonagh musician Kate
O’Callaghan, a great grand-niece, will bring her Dublin
aunts’ brave story to life through song.
“This has been a wonderful opportunity for me to engage
in a project that has been both personal and
commemorative. To sing about my great-grand-aunt on
stage on St Brigid’s Day in Donegal will make for a very
special tribute to her and other courageous
trail-blazing women like her,’’ said Kate.
Small Behaviours is the second song cycle inspired by
Kate O’Callaghan’s great-grand aunt and her involvement
in the 1916 Rising and War of Independence. The first
song-cycle, The Girl with The Beret, was a highlight of
the 2016 Donegal Bay and Blue Stacks Festival. It drew
from the personal stories of Catherine Rooney (nee
Byrne), as detailed in her witness statement to the
Irish government’s Bureau of Military History.
Pictured L-R: Kate
O’Callaghan, Orsolya Szabó-Yélamo, Victor Yelamo,
Maureen McGranaghan, Robert Peoples, Seamus Devenny.
The concert, Small
Behaviours takes place in the Regional Cultural Centre,
Letterkenny on Monday 6 February 2023 at 7pm.
Small Behaviours, explores Catherine’s experiences
following the Rising in Dublin, including gun-running
from Scotland, encounters with British Army troops
heading off to war, prison breaks, ambushes and the
burning of love letters in the aftermath of Bloody
Working with creative facilitator, Seamus Devenny, and
the Donegal Camerata String Quintet directed by Victor
Yelamo, this has been a wonderful opportunity for Kate
O’Callaghan to engage in a process that has been both
personal and commemorative. The work is very much a
reflection on the seemingly ‘small behaviours’ of
ordinary women, which ultimately affected far-reaching
social change over time.
The Donegal Camerata String Quintet is led by cellist
Victor Yélamo a longtime member of the award-winning
Concerto Malaga orchestra and Director of the annual
Donegal Chamber Music Festival. The Camerata also
includes violinists Orsolya Szabó-Yélamo (also of
Concerto Malaga) and Maureen McGranaghan, with Robert
Peoples on viola and Micheal McGinty on double bass.
In addition to her own extensive solo work, Kate
O’Callaghan has collaborated with various artists and
ensembles including Mary Black, The Henry Girls and the
Inishowen Gospel Choir. Prior to embarking on the
current Witness Statement projects, Kate released a
well-received solo album, The Still Beyond, in 2013.
Small Behaviours is on Monday 6 February 2023 at 7pm.
Tickets: €15/€12 on sale at