By Sarah Donoghue

We here at and SMEDIAs 2024 are pleased to announce that Radio Rí-Rá will be working with us to sponsor a category in this year’s awards.   

Radio Rí-Rá is an Irish-language radio station based in Dublin. Its history dates back to 2008 when it was set up by Raidió na Gaeltachta, the national Irish-language radio station. The station’s name, “Rí-Rá,” is an Irish phrase you may remember from your Sraith Pictiúrs. It means “uproar” or “commotion,” and you’ll probably recognise it from the phrase “rí-rá agus ruaille buaille.” The station plays modern music while all the presenters talk in Irish to appeal to a younger crowd. 

Before we look at the history of Radio Rí-Rá, first we’ve got to look at the history of Radió na Gaeltachta. Raidió na Gaeltachta (RnaG) is the Irish-language radio service for the Gaeltacht. It was set up in April 1972 as part of RTÉ. The establishment of Raidió na Gaeltachta was a significant milestone in Irish broadcasting history, it was when the government finally committed to promoting and preserving the Irish language and culture. The station was created to serve the needs of the Gaeltacht and to give them media they can enjoy in their first language. 

In its early years, Raidió na Gaeltachta faced lots of challenges, they had limited resources and they needed to build infrastructure to reach remote areas. But the station quickly gained popularity and became an integral part of life in the Gaeltacht. 

Over the decades, Raidió na Gaeltachta evolved and expanded its programming to cater to a diverse audience. It offers a mix of news, current affairs, music, cultural programming, sports coverage, and educational content, all delivered in the Irish language. It has also contributed to the development of Irish-language media and journalism, nurturing talent and fostering a sense of community among Irish speakers. 

In recent years, Raidió na Gaeltachta has embraced digital platforms and technologies to reach a wider audience both within and outside the Gaeltacht regions. It continues to innovate and adapt to the changing media landscape while remaining committed to its mission of serving the Irish-speaking community and promoting the Irish language and culture. That brings us to Radio Rí-Rá. 

Raidió Rí-Rá was created to celebrate Seachtain na Gaeilge in March 2008, back then it was named Raidió X. Its name was changed to Raidió Rí-Rá. The station was created as part of a collaboration between Digital Audition Productions and Conradh na Gaeilge to set up an Irish language music radio station for young people. During March each year, Raidió Rí-Rá broadcasts on FM in Dublin, Cork and Galway. It used to broadcast in Limerick too but stopped in 2011.  

Radio Rí-Rá was created with the aim of targeting a younger demographic within the Irish-speaking community, giving them content that is relevant to them. The station broadcasts a mix of music, talk shows, news, and entertainment programs entirely in the Irish language, catering to the interests and preferences of its audience. 

Through its programming, Radio Rí-Rá plays a significant role in fostering a sense of identity and community among Irish speakers, both in Gaeltacht regions where Irish is the primary language and in urban areas where it is less commonly spoken. 

Over the years, Radio Rí-Rá has grown in popularity and has become an important voice in Irish-language media. It continues to evolve and adapt to the needs and interests of its audience while remaining committed to its mission of promoting the Irish language and culture.