AWARDS Choice Music Prize 2015 If it’s early March, then it has to be the Choice Music Prize. Declaration of interest: I am chairman of the judging panel, but what the hell – this is always a great night that celebrates the health and wealth of Irish music. Live sets from Album of the Year nominees HamsandwicH, Colm Mac Con Iomaire, Villagers, Soak (right), Le Galaxie, Gavin James, and Song of the Year nominees The Academic, All Tvvins, Fight Like Apes, Pleasure Beach, Otherkin and Daithi. SONGWRITER Joanna Newsom It isn’t often that harpists/pianists/sopranos veer into the netherworld of avant-pop, but Joanna Newsom isn’t your run-of-the-mill artist. Delivering songs that range from circular to sprawling, from dainty to dramatic, this is surely gig of the week. (And what a pity it clashes with Choice.) THEATRE Wild Sky vital acts of commemoration have sought out perspectives from beyond the official narrative; the voices unheard or concealed. History often parses tangled events too neatly, but drama appreciates the chaos and contradiction we tend to call truth. Deirdre Kinahan’s new play finds a specifically rural angle from which to consider this most urban of rebellions, following the tragic love story of two young friends from Meath, Tom Farrell and Josie Dunne, who are divided in affection (Josie loves his poet friend, Mike Lowrey, based on the war poet Francis Ledwidge). When Mike joins the British Army to go to war, Josie turns to nationalism and suffrage at home, while Tom, the least political of the group, joins the rebels of Easter 1916. Directed by Jo Mangan, the performance is underscored by songs, from Mary Murray, drawn from the period.