Perlee, photographed by Mattia Stellacci and Lena Hansen.

Perlee 'In The Round' at Solstice

Perlee, Cormac O’Keeffe and Saramai Leech, originally from Navan are well known on the local scene, playing both original and cover gigs, but over the last two years they have made Berlin their ‘home from home’. Ever known for its inclusive, creative scene, Berlin has proved an inspiring and rewarding environment for the band.

“Though we moved to Berlin with a lot of songs, the bulk of the upcoming EP was written after we arrived in Germany. The Berlin scene has pushed us in ways we don’t even fully realise yet. There’s been great freedom in living in such a big city. Mostly it’s the space and time to experiment and the fact that you can gig often to different audiences,” says Cormac.

Going effortlessly between acoustic songs and synth laden, electric guitar led songs, their music sits somewhere between Dream Pop, Folk, and Indie. Alternating between acoustic and electric guitar, Cormac plays intricate melodies and at other times more layered  textural guitar. Saramai plays cinematic analogue synths and together with their weaving vocals and harmonies the overall result is lush, emotional and otherworldly. 

Joining them in Solstice for a special 'In The Round'  concert this Friday, 28th February, is extraordinary jazz drummer Conor Murray who brings a wonderful backbone to the set going from subtle percussion to furious soundscapes with ease. Hot Press Magazine had this to say of the duo ‘Delivering soothing and dreamy alt-pop, they turned their setting temporarily into a David Lynch movie… singer Saramai Leech’s smoky voice coupled with the band’s floaty and delicate keyboard and guitar driven melodies created a dream-like feeling – beautiful but haunting – recalling Angelo Badalamenti’s work…’

Perlee have released a new single ‘Charlie’s Song’  with a music video that was filmed just after Christmas, in Kells. Director Mark Smyth and cinematographer Jass Foley, together with their team, have created a rich and modern fairytale-like video shot at the stunning locations of Girley Bog and Rockfield House.

‘Slow Creature’ is the name of the upcoming EP from Perlee. It was generously supported by the Meath Arts Office and Solstice Arts Centre's new Associated Artist Programme. Advance copies will be available at the performance on 12” vinyl and CD formats.

Solstice's new Associated Artists Programme

Solstice Arts Centre in Navan has launched a new Associated Artists Programme to provide support and financial assistance to artists from Meath to further their artistic development and careers. Each year Solstice will work with new artists to identify areas of their practice that could benefit from support, including financial assistance, rehearsal/development space, technical, marketing and artistic mentoring, and performance opportunities. 

In 2020 Solstice will work with Navan dream-pop duo ‘Perlee' (Saramai Leech/ Cormac O Keeffe) who release their debut EP Slow Creature with the support of Solstice and Meath Arts Office in March, and perform an Vinyl Party Gig at Solstice on 28th February to celebrate. Well known professional actor/director Ronan Leahy will be supported in the development and production of new play Incognito to tour nationally in 2020. Fierce and ferocious aerial duo 'Femme Bizarre' (Kate Finegan/Jade O'Connor) mix aerial dance, spoken word, comedy, physical theatre, song and dance in their explosive production CAGED which will be staged in Solstice in early May, and award-winning actor/playwright/composer Fionn Foley is developing a new theatre piece for two actors (actor/musicians) and a musician (fiddle-player) to tour Ireland in 2021.
In their new six-year strategy developed by Director Belinda Quirke in conjunction with the Solstice Board of Directors, and launching in March 2020, Solstice recognises its responsibility as a beacon of arts practice in the north east, offering supports and resources to professional artists whilst nurturing creative life in the region. The new strategy prioritises the creation of opportunities for artists to develop their art form in qualitative ways. Speaking about the new supports, Quirke said: "Through artistic collaboration, we take the time to cultivate artistic work and commissions. We awaken and hone our own exploration and expertise by listening to and involving diverse stakeholders. It is important to us that we do our best for artists by ensuring artists are supported in their career, and acknowledged that their unique creative work is essential in helping us navigate, voice, and enrich our daily lives".

Tickets for the first event of the new support programme, Perlee's Vinyl Party Show, are on sale now for €16/€14 on or by calling Box Office on (046) 909 2300.