Home is where the heart is and I can only relate to this statement when I think of the International Bar.
Live music lovers, open mic seekers, friendly souls, this place is for you.
Not only this pub is full of History (ie. pictures and newspaper articles framed on the walls), but it knows how to live with its time, quietly but with lots of class. Gathering from all over the world, tourists will find an unexpected atmosphere of authenticity, put by the regular faces of the International Bar. Real Irish people ready to tell you a story over a pint of Guinness and what not.
So much to do in there and if you're a comedy, live music, open mic, poetry, spoken word lover (yes, all that in once), then this place is definitely your place to be.
. THE MONDAY ECHO (8pm to 11.30pm) every week brings you one the most talented singers, songwriters, poets, comedians you will find in the city. All gathered in the intimate lounge downstairs, and hosted by the amazing MC/singer/songwriter Aidan Murphy. All unplugged.
. DUBLIN'S UNDERGROUND BEAT (8pm to 11.30pm), its little sister has the same concept, every WEDNESDAY, same place, hosted by the singer/songwriter and poet Johnny Rayge - who will launch his album VIGIL the 13th of June / also known as the lead singer of the well known ITO Band from former years - and the night is growing bigger.
As the Wedesnday sessions are unplugged and the audience keeps quiet so your delighted ears can enjoy even more the delivered words, the DUB FRIDAY sessions is all Electric. Bring on the amps, the mics and PA. You will find yourself dancing and singing along as never before. Much better than trying to be-friend your TV screen. The bands are amazing and always come back to play more and more. You'll definitely feel like you're a part of something...not to say family.
. And tourists, if they want to experience a great night of live music with fantastic Irish artists, should definitely stop by on SUNDAY nights from 6pm t'ill late as two sessions happen in one go. You'll see the lads poping out of nowhere and joining the circle of musicians. They're here to play traditional songs, armed with their guitars, flute, accordion or banjo. It's a friendly bunch of people you can definitely talk to. They'il bring you on a beautiful musical journey, making you experienced what an Irish pub is really about.
Love this bar. It's been around for AGES! and is a gem of a place. Even though it's central, it's got that lovely local feel. Downstairs is the main bar and upstairs is where they have gigs, comedy etc.
It's got that quirky old style feel to it, friendly bar staff, mix of Dubliners and tourists and they serve awesome stew on Paddy's weekend!
Defo recommend for a real Dublin feel.
I've come to the Comedy Cellar (Wednesday nights) a few times and it's always loads of fun. Andrew Stanley is always brilliant host (he will pick you out at some point in the night, so no point hiding in back), and you get a variety of stand up comedians that change from week to week. We've had dancing, singing, and great fun here over a few pints.
tip 1: It's upstairs! I believe doors open at 9pm
tip 2: sign up for the newsletter, there are occasional 2 for the price of 1 deals
The International Bar
The International Bar is one of Dublin's treasures - an authentic Traditional Irish Pub that resides in the heart of the city centre.
On venturing in to pay a visit, one is presented with 3 bars inside to explore, and very evidently, it is easy to see, that much effort has been made to preserve the personality and character of the venue.
The International Bar provides a platform for emerging artists to perform, whilst also providing an assortment of entertainment for visitors to the venue.
The venue can be broken down into 3 parts, in which different types of artistic performance take place.
1. 'The Main Bar' on street level, I consider, as a must see pit-stop, which embodies a unique character and ambience of merry nostalgia of 'the good oul' times,' in Dublin City. In this bar, Traditional Irish Music Sessions take place, as do Jazz sessions alike.
2. 'The Comedy Cellar Bar' upstairs, I consider, to be a very inviting, cosy and intimate bar, that encapsulates an essence of the past, in which one can almost hear the naked laughter on entering.
Des Bishop and his brother Aidan Bishop run 'The Comedy Club' Events in 'The Comedy Cellar Bar,' and many present day Irish Comedians, have swung bye at one point or another , such as: Ardal O' Hanlan, Maeve Higgins, and Dylan Moran.
3. 'The Basement Bar,' in the basement!, I consider, to be also, a very inviting, warm and cosy, intimate bar, which personifies an essence of character and charisma. 'The Monday Echo' Poetry and Singer Songwriter Nite, as well as The D.U.B. (Dublin's Underground Beat) Poetry and Singer Songwriter Nite, take place in 'The Basement Bar, where both recognized and emerging artists are given the opportunity to perform.
I don't even think it is possible for me to highlight that any of the events I love more than another, or that I have my favourites!
So, to conclude, I can only say that, I highly recommend that paying a visit to 'The International Bar' would be a very positive experience that one should have!
I come here every sunday from 6pm to 8pm they have one band each sunday. really good music!!!. here's the link, donkeyjawproductions.com with videos of the bands performing at the international!
good quality music, very comfortable, I meet loads of people and is completely mixed nationalities, and I love it, because I can have a chat with people from south america and other countries.
We drop down here on a Monday night sometimes for the Monday Echo music and poetry night.
The room (downstairs) is *tiny*, but the walls are lined with couches and it's always good fun.
The crowd is friendly and supportive of the acts, the atmosphere is great and if you get in early (approx 7.30 or so) their stew is amazing!
Let's just get this out of the way shall we? The International is better than the Laughter Lounge. There I said it.
It's a fire hazard, you never get the same shape glass more than once, it's cramped, the seats are all uncomfortable and facing odd directions but I just can't help but love this crappy, dilapidated little comedy club. Let's not forget the hi-tech sound system powered by an iPod nano!
It's also got a very cool underground vibe given the pedigree of Irish comics that have honed their craft on its stage. You might not get a free cocktail like in that other shambles* of a comedy venue across the Liffey but you do get a great night of comedy for a mere tenner.
*OK, The Laughter Lounge isn't that bad but it ain't no International.
There are number of people who liked this place. I can safely say that I'm not the venue's biggest fan. Lets begin at the beginning.... The first time I was here was for a comedy gig, the gig was quite enjoyable, but I'm not reviewing the comedians.
Whenever I talk about this, I feel like I'm having a discussion with Lionel Hutz, Realtor.
Me: "Lionel, this place is a bit cramped. I can hardly move between the furniture, let alone the people"
Lionel: "I'd call it intimate. Yeah, it's an intimate venue"
Me: "It's not exactly the cleanest place, is it?"
Lionel: "I'd say it's lived-in!"
And so on... and so forth...
Ladies and gentlemen, I'm not going to be running back to this place again. I mentioned my feelings towards this place to a friend and he told me the place has character. In response to this, let me quote Manny Bianco from Black Books,
"Character is, an ambience, a feeling. It's not something with fur and a beak."
Bless me father for I have sinned but it has been TWO YEARS since I have been to the International Bar. When passing by yesterday, I decided to venture in for 'A' pint (purely to escape these Baltic weather conditions). Needless to say after the first four, the pints were getting better and better. If like me you enjoy a day-time tipple and you are fond of your pint of porter then there is no better place.
I am a firm believer that a good pub is nothing without a good pint of Guinness and the pints in here are next to none! From the moment you walk through the door to the moment you leave, you will notice that the bar is a wash wit Guinness (not a bottle of Heineken or a vodka a coke insight)..
With its friendly bar men (who are more than happy to engage in the usual chit-chat), along with its few regulars propping up the bar in-case the inevitable should happen, you cant help but get into the swing of things and age by about 20 or 30years.
Yes, yes, I know its famous for its Comedy Greats but it also has so much more to offer, with its rich creamy pints, friendly atmosphere, and 3euro soup or sandwiches, its hard to be beaten. So whether your looking for a little spot to read the paper or somewhere catch up with old friends, I don't think you can go to far wrong...
Popped into the International purely by chance last Friday evening, and noticed that they have comedy acts on 7 nights a week....Sharon a bit slow on the uptake there!
What a laugh...!
No pun intended, being a comedy club and all..
€10 in....handed over halfway up a rickety stairs to a shady looking fella...
but absolutely worth every penny.
Got to see FOUR acts....one crap and three great. 3 outta four aint bad. I would have paid €10 just to see the first act, Jack Whitehall, alone.
Only reason for taking off last star was the fact that it was really packed, and had no seat, but in fairness, all the people that arrived on time had seats, so thats not their fault.
Barman was working alone, serving around 60 people by himself, and was still cracking jokes, so was pretty impressed.
Will definitely be back very soon...!
The following day, my face still hurt. It felt like I'd been working out my cheeks. An evening in The International Comedy Club will have you laughing 'till you cry.
On a Sunday, it isn't as packed as I'm used to (which means actually getting a seat) and it only costs €5. Five euro for five comedy acts! Bargain!
Whatever about the audience heckling the comedians, this venue is so tiny that they heckle you! I was "picked on" by two comedians that night.
First, Aidan Bishop (Des Bishop's sexy brother) complimented me on my summer dress and asked where I was from. There was no fear of me outshining the comedian as I replied, "Ireland." Duh!
Fred Cooke (yer man from the Spar ads) insisted I was Jean from the UCD musical society and that we "shifted" back in '99.
He impressed me with how quickly and wittily he improvised when someone from the audience suggested songs for him to perform. He really involved the crowd and even got the barman to dim the lights as he danced Thriller-style and played two recorders at a time. Then, Aidan got up and rapped with him.
Abie Philbin Bowman (writer and performer of "Jesus: The Guantanamo Years") seemed like he was showing off with all he knew about politics and history. Us Irish don't like cockiness. We find self-deprecation a lot more humorous.
On the other hand, Aussie Damian Clark (from TV show "I Dare Ya") was energetic, hilarious and has such an infectious laugh.
So if you want some chiselled jaw lines, get your funny bones down to The International Comedy Club!
I can honestly say I went here atleast 15 times or more...
I have nothing but GREAT things to say about this place... My friends and I went every Sunday to the comedy club to watch Des and Aidan Bishop... I can honestly say I miss this place more than anything... So many laughs, so many great moments, and memories were made here. I can't wait to go back!
Although part of me wants to keep the International a secret, it would be cruel not to pass on this gem to fellow Yelpers. This pub deserves a gold star for being unique and authentic and for attracting a diverse mix of people. The downstairs attracts mainly young people who work in the area. The upstairs could be called an old man's pub. The regulars who drink here always have a story to tell and if you sit in the right spot, they might just share it with you. The barmen take their jobs seriously, after all most of them have been working here for decades.
Sundays are the most interesting days to visit the pub because there's a trad session that kicks off in the afternoon. Some amazing musicians play here and the International is consistently voted as one of the best places to see live music in Dublin.
Ground floor is a bar, 1st floor is a comedy club, and the bottom floor is a music venue (from what I could tell, nothing going on when I looked, but there was a guitar). The bar area is really small, as is the comedy club, but the comedy club was a lot of fun.
Drinks are a bit costly, but it is right off Grafton St (beer was average cost and mixed drinks were a bit much)
If you get a gig here, it really means that you're beginning to make your mark on the Irish comedy scene, as it's a veritable mecca of comedians and fans in Dublin. As testament to this fact, I'm keeping this review strictly unfunny, so as not to embarrass myself and my woeful stand-up capabilities (or lack thereof). With Aidan Bishop as MC (brother of Des), it's worth a visit if only for the eye candy...add in a bit of talent then you're (literally) laughing.
There's comedy on 7 nights a week, and due to its reputation as the bastion of Irish comedy, it all tends to be of a high standard. The bar downstairs isn't bad to pop in for a tipple, or sit outside and watch Dublin pass you by. If you're a fan of the funny, then this place should be top of your list by a long shot.
I'm a very hard to impress person when it comes to comedy or stand-up. I can count with one hand the number of instances where I actually laughed uncontrollably while watching someone on TV.
I visited this place in May of 2007, at first I was worried that I wouldn't enjoy it. My Irish friends kept insisting that I'd understand all the jokes because the club is run by two American brothers. And AM I GLAD THAT THEY DRAGGED ME ALONG! IT WAS THE BEST COMEDY SHOW I've seen! My zygomaticus were sore until the next day! Since then I've attended quite a few shows, and I still reminisce about this place that changed my attitude toward stand-up.
I am recommending this place to my friends traveling to Ireland this spring and anyone who enjoys a good ab workout.
Hmm...the International Bar. Where anything can happen. And where you often will encounter a fair amount of international customers.
I've gone for the comedy twice. Once improv which was enjoyable; once stand up which was better (though I alternately wanted to stab and hit on some of the comedians). You truly never know what you're gonna get here and the funny just got better and better as the night went on. Complete with plenty of Asian jokes...tailored right to the audience. Definitely get there early (!) if you want a decent seat. It fills up quick and you'll be on top of someone. Someone will probably spill something on you. Get over it now. In fact, you should probably just laugh it off. Always a good time.
The bartenders are really nice, seemingly very loyal to their establishment, and protective of their female customers. Which is good to see. It's pretty down and dirty, but it's part of what's great about it.
Head downstairs if you've got a group. The juke box is awful!! And the bathrooms are gross. But it can be a fun place to start or finish a night. I went with a few girlfriends on our first Friday night in Dublin and we accidentally got picked up by a pub crawl. Free shots, drinks, and no covers all night long! I've been in Dublin for over 3 months now and it's still one of the best nights I've had.
I love pubs with a legacy. And the International definitely has a legacy. Every Irish comedian worth a bob has started off here, and if you want to see up-and-comers, you have to go here.
It's great for a pint, because you can take in the great atmosphere and there's great comedy curated by Des and Aidan Bishop. Definitely somewhere you have to go in Dublin.
The comedy shows are a real gem! Cheap entry, hilarious acts and the close quarters with the stage allow for some good interactions between comic and crowd!
Went here to see a comedy gig that the International are famous for (it was very good by the way).
One of the comedian's opened with: "So could you believe that you'd paid ten euro to get into this crappy room!" Pretty funny if you've been there, you'll know what I mean!
Great gig though.
Great comedy, as others have mentioned. Went to see a friend do his 5 minutes or whatever one time years ago, and stuck around with him to watch the rest of the gig. Turned out to be some sort of event for the first series of Des Bishop's Work Experience (am I dating myself here or what?). I have never seen a "headliner" or Emcee get more shit from the other comics (in a loving way, of course). It was like watching your squabbling brothers suddenly gang up on a country cousin. There's a lot of love there, but also a LOT of insults. That atmosphere got me hooked, and I later learned it was an IB tradition going back years.
Fantastic place, worth checking out any time you've a night to fill.
The International is the birth place of Irish stand-up. Better still, it is here that the Golden Generation(Dermot Morgan, Ardal O'Hanlon, Graham Norton, Tommy Tiernan and a dozen others) first came together. This is where it all began.
The International has continued in this tradition and now has stand-up 7 nights a week. Lovely on a sunny day too.
Looks big from the outside, doesn't it?!
The International Bar is one of those great little Irish pubs - yes, little - with some great comedy to boot, and well worth a visit.
The downstairs bar is reasonably long but only really wide enough for one row of tables, a narrow walking space, and a few stools next to the bar. Nonetheless, it has character, and is generally a good place to grab a pint to wait for them to open the doors for the comedy club upstairs.
When they do open the doors, you can clamber up the wooden staircase and hand over your 10 euros, before ushering yourself into a dim little room with a rickety bar and a tiny stage. It's not fancy, but it's a wonderfully intimate comedy venue and a great place to see some great acts for a mere tenner. It's dark enough that you can slink back and remain anonymous, but small enough that if you want to interact with the comedians, you will have no problem getting their attention. Some well-known comedians do stand up here, sometimes even trying new material - it really is a great value night.
Well worth a visit, even if you might need to step out onto the street every so often to feel like you're not standing in a closet with 50 other people!
My husband and I stopped in here while in Dublin for a pint and quick bite to eat. The Irish stew was very yummy and came a slice of soda bread for 6 euro. My husband got a sandwich for about 3-4 euro and enjoyed it. This place was small and cozy. The bathrooms weren't the greatest but it is a bar mind you.
Love this bar. We happened upon a session on Sat. and the atmosphere was great. Met some great characters too. Real local with what looked to be a great irish stew on offer. I can't comment as I didn't have it but those who did milled their way though it. A good solid Dublin pub. Nothing pretentious..
This would be a good standard city pub (complete with a picture of Colm Meaney over the bar), would it not be for the great stand-up comedy shows, traditional sessions and acoustic concerts they have here. Has actually been the starting place for many a comedian of international fame - at least that's what they tell you here. But the downstairs lounge is really nice, and I can recommend the upstairs for a relaxed Sunday afternoon pint.
The comedy shows are the only reason to ever go near this bar! It's tiny and popular. The shows are generally excellent with a lot of audience participation. You often see well known faces perform.
The International is a real Dublin gem. If you're after a cocktail and a bowl of olives it's the wrong, wrong place - there are plenty of generic, image conscious bars in the area that you might prefer. The Inter is as real as it gets. The locals are always good for an interesting chat if you're there for a pint, but you're more likely to be there for the comedy or Jazz nights, which are definately worth a look.
The International Bar is famous for its comedy gigs, but I prefer to just drop in here for a drink. I tried to go to a comedy event one night but it was absolutely mobbed and would have been really uncomfortable - although I would actually have been left in to add to the crush! They do theatre sometimes upstairs too and I saw a play there one time, which was also super uncomfortable. It's only a small venue but still, it would be nice if the chairs were easier to sit in. I love hanging out in the main bar having a pint though and I go there again and again - just not to any gigs!
Oh god, the comedians I saw here were HILARIOUS. Despite them making fun of me and my dad for being flamboyantly American ... Actually, I think that was just as funny as the stand-up. Tourist or local, check it out!
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