Armagh Rhymers

The Armagh Rhymers are one of the most celebrated traditional music and theatre ensembles on the Island of Ireland.

Since we were founded in 1970’s, we have delighted audiences in schools, festivals throughout Ireland and around the world.  Through music, storytelling and drama, we provide an experience that is both entertaining and educational.  Our colourful costumes evoke a sense of tradition and history and encapsulate the spirit of the Wren boys and the ancient house visiting traditions of Ireland, where the kitchen floor became the stage.  The Rhyming tradition is a celebration of the ‘theatre of the people’ and has inspired many poets such as Seamus Heaney, Brendan Kennelly, John Montague and John Hewitt.


The Armagh Rhymers have been working in both English and Irish language schools throughout Ireland for over 40 years.


The Armagh Rhymers have enthralled audiences in Ireland and around the world at hundreds of events and festivals.

Events & Exhibitions

The Armagh Rhymers can provide colour and music for any event or occasion. We have a pool of highly talented instrumentalists, singers and actors.


Bíonn cuir chun cinn na Gaeilge croí lárnach in achan ghné d’obair Chleamairí Ard Mhacha. Is ábhar bróid dúinn siamsaíocht d’ardchaighdeán agus taithí oideachasúil a sholáthar.

Community Engagement

The Armagh Rhymers work extensively with local community groups.

Our Team
Dara Vallely


Anne Hart


Cormaic O’Briain

Uillean pipe player and storyteller

Adam Costa


Dara Vallely
Artistic Director

Dara formed the Armagh Rhymers in the 1970’s to bring educational theatre to schools and is now their creative director.  He has a degree in education and previously worked as a teacher.  Dara plays the concertina, flute, whistle and piano.  He is also a well – known artist who has exhibited his paintings throughout Ireland and the USA.

Anne Hart

Anne as a former teacher has extensive experience in front line education.  As former Director of Education at Emain Mhacha she was responsible for a wide range of educational and cultural projects and services. She is a published children’s author and has also written several plays for The Armagh Rhymers. Anne is the animator in the group, facilitating the interactive nature of the performances.

Cormac O’Briain

Cormac is an Uillean pipe player and storyteller, and a fluent Irish language speaker.  He has combined his love of gaelic culture and language with his background in advocacy for their promotion.  He has a particular interest in the use of these arts as a supporting resource for curriculum delivery.

Adam Costa

Adam is an experienced violinist in both the traditional and classical traditions.  He graduated from Victoria University of Wellington, NZ with a postgraduate degree in Music with Honours.  He has also achieved his ATCL (Associate of Trinity College London) in performance violin.   Since moving to Ireland in 2002 he has pursued a career in both traditional and classical music, regularly performing in Ireland, Europe & USA.  He is also an avid composer of choral and instrumental music.  He has been a member of the Armagh Rhymers since 2008.