The Commitments 20th Reunion to Benefit Irish Cancer Society

It was 1991 when the film The Commitments burst onto our movie screens and into the hearts and souls of music lovers across the world. Now, for the first time ever, the stars from The Commitments will re-unite for a limited run of concerts in March 2011, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Ireland’s favourite film. 

This will be the very first time that the band will perform a full concert together! The Stars from The Commitments will perform in 2011 in The Royal Theatre, Castlebar, Co. Mayo on 14 March, The INEC in Killarney, Co. Kerry on 15 March, The Odyssey, Belfast on 17 March and the O2, Dublin on 19 March. 

A donation will be made to the Irish Cancer Society for every ticket sold and the cast hope to raise over €30,000 for the charity. The concerts will be full blown soul extravaganzas with songs from the movie and many added extras!

Tickets for all concerts will be priced from €55.80/€59.80 including booking fee (£36/£40 including booking fee in Northern Ireland) and will go on sale on Friday, 15 October at 9am through usual Ticketmaster outlets.

The Commitments Talk about the 20th Anniversary

A few of the members of the band, recognising the impending anniversary, started looking into the possibility of a series of reunion gigs. Pretty soon a team was coming together including Paul Bushnell who was the Music Director on the movie and co produced the soundtrack CD's with Kevin Killen and Alan Parker. There was a united feeling that it could be a really good thing, that a burst of Irish soul might bring a glide back into people’s stride and raise morale a little in the midst of this climate of doom and gloom. "We gathered together in Dublin a month ago" says Bushnell, "performed a few songs as a band, then sat down over pints and thrashed it all out between us to see if we could make it work. And we did! So here we are!”

Of the upcoming shows, Andrew Strong (Deco Cuffe) said “The Commitments has inspired so many people all over the world which in turn has given me a career and the respect and ability to do the one thing I love to do the most – sing! So for that reason alone, to take a few evenings to relive and perform this memorable occasion is not a lot to ask, considering the amazing journey my life has carved for itself due to my involvement  in

The Commitments”. Bronagh Gallagher (Bernie McGloughlin) adds “I have been through many emotions regarding The Commitments reunion but after I met everyone in Dublin last month and we sang and played and then had a good chat about how we all felt, the decision was just there in front of us!  I was so happy to see everyone again and I believe it’s a new time and a wonderful opportunity to celebrate such a special film with all the Irish people who loved it so much too. I have life long friendships due to my involvement in it and I'm honoured to have been. With our performances next year, we aim to stimulate positivity, pride and happiness back into our beautiful country and people after the very hard road the Irish people have been on.“

Robert Arkins (Jimmy Rabbitte) says “When I first heard someone was trying to get the cast/band together, well, I ignored it! How many times have I heard that one! But this time it did seem somewhat just seemed auspicious I guess, what with the 20th anniversary. It became apparent pretty quickly that everyone was behind the idea, to mark off the occasion, so who was I to say no!” Michael Aherne (Steven Clifford) said of the reunion: “The rehearsals were a blast! It is particularly enjoyable for me, as a transport planner, to jump briefly into an entirely different world of music and entertainment.

The Commitments movie allowed us to feel good about being from Ireland, it was part of that series of events that drove us forward from recession in the early 1990’s. In some respects it perhaps redefined us – as urban, as young, as energetic. And so The Commitments getting back together now is timely – we need to believe in ourselves again, to remember who we are and have a song and a laugh along the way.

Angeline Ball (Imelda Quirke) said: ‘From a personal point of view, it’s wonderful to see everyone and perform that amazing music again. Also, in the current climate, it’s great to participate in a gig that will have such a feelgood factor and will hopefully resonate with the public...I am delighted that we are getting together again after 20 years!”

Glen Hansard (Outspan Foster) said: “When I heard about the possibility of The Commitments reforming for a few shows it felt very welcoming, a perspective I wasn't sure I'd feel. Andrew’s voice is on fire and the girls sound better than ever. It’s a real joy to stand behind him and the girls and watch them make us all look good. I’m just happy to be the guitar player again. We’re all older and hopefully wiser now and I look forward to getting down to work and catching up with everyone.” Felim Gormley (Dean Fay) is simply “Excited and delighted!”

Ken McCluskey (Derek Scully) noted that for him, the reunion is “a chance to thank the fans and for the all the good will and support I have received over the years”, while Dick Massey (Billy Mooney) added “Over the years, we've all had thousands of people asking if and when and maybe and please would The Commitments play a show together. Now that everyone is able to work these shows into their schedules it's great.  I think a lot of fans will be very happy.”

Tour Info

Tickets on sale from Friday, October 15th at 9am.

The original cast of "The Commitments" 20th anniversary reunion concerts will feature Andrew Strong, Robert Arkins, Angeline Ball, Bronagh Gallagher, Michael Aherne, Glen Hansard, Felim Gormley, Dave Finnegan, Ken McCluskey and Dick Massey.

  • Monday 14 March, 2011, The Royal Theatre, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
  • Tuesday 15 March, 2011, INEC, Killarney, Co. Kerry
  • Thursday 17 March, 2011, The Odyssey Arena, Belfast.
  • Saturday 19 March, 2011, The O2, Dublin

Click here to visit the Irish Cancer Society for full ticket / booking information.