Máirtín de Cógáin is a singing, dancing, storytelling bodhran player who also is a noted playwright and actor. He performs in his native Ireland and all over the U.S. in between and beyond, too! An infectious personality, Máirtín pleasantly commands the attention of any collection of people, from a concert hall to an intimate porch.
Descended from a long line of storytellers and with two Comhaltas All-Ireland’s for Storytelling under his belt, Máirtín gets no more joy out of life than the telling of stories. Growing up in a rambling house in Carrigaline, Co. Cork, where parties were frequent, when the dancing would stop for a break, everyone had to have their party piece, and from the age of 7 Máirtín was no exception. His father Barry taught him nearly all he knows; the rest he picked up from the many great yarnspinners he has met along the road like Éamon Kelly, Pat ‘the Hat’ Speith, Bob Jennings, Éamonn de Barra and many more.
When touring the globe with Gailfean (Brian Conway, John Whelan & Don Penzien), The Fuchsia Band (Eoin Verling, Brian McGillicuddy & Mick Heffernan), Captain Mackey’s Goatskin and Stringband (Jimmy Crowley) & The Máirtín de Cógáin Project, Máirtín is also a true promoter of the Ballad. He is searching ever for those forgotten songs of old to give them new life, and also writes some of his own. Máirtín learnt from many famous Irish singers such as Danni Maichi Ua Súilleabháin, Séamus Mac Mathúna, and Ciarán Dwyer. A fluent speaker of Irish (Gaelic), his love of the ‘Teanga na Gael‘ stems from his parents, who brought him up in a bilingual house and sent him to primary and secondary schools taught in the medium of Irish. Máirtín then earned a degree in the Irish language from University College Cork.
If not on stage singing, storytelling, dancing, or playing the bodhran, Máirtín is treading the boards as an actor, most notably in the film The Wind that Shakes the Barley. He has co-written many productions with the Be Your Own Banana Theatre Company, recently playing De Bogman Off-Broadway in NY.
Instructor – Bodhrán, Set Dancing