Dance, Theater, and Music

Olympia Theatre

“Amazing ambience. Mike Mills of R.E.M. loves this venue.”—Nicola Reddy, deputy editor, Dubliner magazine. Elaborate 19th-century theater that hosts performances by rock and classical bands. Tickets vary. 72 Dame Street, Dublin 2; tel. 353 0 1 679 3323. www.mcd.ie/venues/index.php?c=olympiatheatre

The O2

Former train depot is one of Ireland’s biggest concert venues (seats 8,500). Formerly The Point. U2 and R.E.M. both recorded live albums here. North Wall Quay, Dublin 1; tel. 353 0 1 676 6144. http://www.theo2.ie/

Tripod

Dublin’s newest live music hot spot; multifunctional, renovated industrial space features three performance venues, reserved balcony seating, a club space, and a bar; hosts Irish and international bands. Tickets from $10. Old Harcourt Street Station, Harcourt Street, Dublin 2; tel. 353 0 1 476 3374. www.tripodlive.ie

Nightlife

The Market Bar

Airy, modern pub in a converted church, with vaulted ceilings, impressive design; no-music policy means conversation is actually possible. 16a Fade Street, Dublin 2; tel. 353 0 1 613 9094. www.marketbar.ie

The Octagon Bar

Trendy cocktail bar in the Clarence Hotel. Candles, fireplace, leather banquettes, and a titular octagonal bar; frequented by models and celebrities, including the U2 bandmates who own the place. The Clarence Hotel, 6–8 Wellington Quay, Dublin 2; tel. 353 0 1 407 0800. www.theclarence.ie

The Long Hall

Big, popular traditional pub with ornate Victorian decor; filigree-edge mirrors, chandeliers, tiny hidden tables; friendly atmosphere. 51 South Great George’s Street, Dublin 2; tel. 353 0 1 475 1590.

The Cobblestone

“It’s the quality of the musicians that makes the difference; musicians are given the freedom to play what they want. It’s very informal.”—Toner Quinn, editor, Journal of Irish Music. Classic Irish pub; live traditional music every night. 77 North King Street, Dublin 7; tel. 353 0 1 872 1799.

JJ Smyth’s

Family-owned pub in the house where the poet Thomas Moore was born; famous for jazz and blues sessions six nights a week; features local and international acts including the Ben Prevo Band, the Brian Meakin Band, Rag Mama Rag, and the Phil Ware Trio. 12 Aungier Street, Dublin 2; tel. 353 0 1 475 2565. www.jjsmyths.com

Whelan’s

“Dark, wooden interior; balcony overlooking the stage; very atmospheric.”—Nicola Reddy, deputy editor, Dubliner magazine. Raucous pub and music venue, hosts both local and international acts. Check local listings, or take potluck. Tickets from $10. 25 Wexford Street, Dublin 2; tel. 353 0 1 478 0766. www.whelanslive.com

Festivals

St. Patrick’s Festival

On and around March 17. Massive multiple-day event celebrating Ireland’s patron saint; street theater, music, fireworks, and parties as well as a grand parade, with Irish and international marching bands, drill teams, floats. www.stpatricksday.ie

Jameson Dublin International Film Festival

Late February/early March. More than a hundred films are screened over two weekends. Showcases Irish and world cinema; seminars and lectures on filmmaking. Meet Irish directors like Joel Conroy (Wave Riders, 2008) and international filmmakers such as Jonas Mekas (Guns of the Trees, 1964). http://www.jdiff.com/

Diversions Festival

June to August. Free performances held in streets and squares: dance, film, theater, music, opera, and visual arts; features more than 100 performers from a dozen countries; past programs have included recitals by Clive Carroll and Gareth Peterson, and “In the Open,” a mix of poetry, prose, and drama in Temple Bar Square. www.templebar.ie/home

Bloomsday Festival

June 16. A full day devoted to celebrating Leopold Bloom, the main character of James Joyce’s Ulysses. Restaurants, pubs, museums, and cinemas all get in on the act. www.jamesjoyce.ie

Oxegen

Early/mid July. One of Europe’s premier summer indie rock music fests, with acts playing on multiple stages throughout a weekend. Line-up has included Kings of Leon, Editors, Scissor Sisters, and Razorlight. Punchestown Racecourse, County Kildare. www.oxegen.ie

Dublin Theatre Festival

Two weeks in late September/early October. Theaters throughout Dublin feature new plays by major Irish companies, such as Druid; international theaters and dance companies; and touring companies from London’s West End theaters. www.dublintheatrefestival.com

Tradition: DL

August. Colossal festival of traditional Irish music; held harborside in suburban Dún Laoghaire; a must-visit festival for lovers of Ireland’s traditional sound. Pavilion Theatre, Marine Road. www.paviliontheatre.ie

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