Kelly, Laoise

Born in Westport, Co. Mayo in 1973, Laoise Kelly learned to play the piano and how to read music from her father. She did a year of tin whistle with piper Rory Sommers and went on to learn for years from the wonderful John Hoban while also doing piano with Maria Lynn and then Anne Kilkelly.  The harp arrived when she was 12 and Ann-Marie Scanlon was her first teacher. Then Kim Fleming from Roscommon taught Laoise tunes for the Fleadh while also doing RIAM classical exams. Sr.Karol O’Connell steered Laoise into a life of music with her enthusiasm.

Laoise Kelly was a founding member of the traditional group Bumblebees, with whom she recorded two albums. She has recorded on over 60 albums with many of Ireland’s foremost artists including Seamus Heaney, The Chieftains, Christy Moore, Sharon Shannon, Dónal Lunny, Tommy Makem, Matt Molloy, Tommy Peoples, Mary Black, Maighread & Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill. She played the celtic harp on Kate Bush's song Mná na hÉirann.

She has toured and performed globally and at festivals such as Womad, Celtic Connections, Celtic Colours, Tonder, Dranouter, Lorient, Milwaukee, Armagh Piping Festival and all major harp festivals in Europe.

Laoise won several All-Ireland titles and Harp competitions including the Keadue Carolan and Granard Harp Festivals. 

  • Biography. Laoise Kelly website, retrieved 10 September 2017.