This site aims to bring you up-to-date on Mary O'Hara and let you flavour her music, however fleetingly. By a couple of years she pre-dated the so called ' Folk Era' that nowadays many associate with Joan Baez, The Clancy Brothers, Bob Dylan, et al. Liam Clancy in his 2002 autobiography, Memoirs of an Irish Troubadour, writes about how the singing of Mary O'Hara had inspired him and others of the period. Her harp-playing revived the tradition of the Irish harp
as an accompanying instrument - a tradition dead in Ireland by the 1950s.
In 1996 Mary O’Hara retired from performing and, two years later, she took off for Africa. She had done the same almost three decades earlier after the death of her young poet husband, Richard Selig.
At that time, however, she joined a contemplative order of nuns, emerging after 12½ years to take up her interrupted singing career
, recording thirteen more LPs, having her own TV series on the BBC and on ITV in the UK and writing three best-selling books, one of them her autobiography, The Scent of the Roses, a title taken from "Farewell But Whenever...", one of her favourite songs by poet Thomas Moore.
Then, to great acclaim
, she went on to perform in the major concert halls not just
of the English-speaking world - New York's Carnegie Hall, London’s Royal Albert Hall, the Sydney Opera House, to name but a few….
A play about her, Harp on the Willow, has recently drawn packed audiences in Australia and she is back travelling once more, this time delighting audiences with her presentations entitled Travels With My Harp.
Mary O'Hara singing Sydney Carter's LORD OF THE DANCE, the song that moved her to take up singing again after 12½ years silence.