Saoirse Ronan and Hozier team up to aid domestic violence charities with moving Cherry Wine music video.

Irish musician Hozier and, Oscar-nominated Brooklyn star, Saoirse Ronan have joined forces to highlight the issue of domestic violence for the #FaceUpToDomesticViolence campaign.

The County Wicklow musician, who shot to fame with his single “Take me to Church,” released his newest single “Cherry Wine” on St. Valentine’s Day along with a powerful video, starring Ronan and Moe Dunford, which addresses the issue of domestic violence head on.

The video depicts a woman (Ronan) dealing with a physically abusive relationship. The song, Cherry Wine, is written from the male perspective of an abuse sufferer. The song’s lyrics offer a unique insight into an abusive relationship. They shine a light on the cycle of “justification” often perpetuated in domestic violence incidents. Public health experts say this “justification” controls the abused, shames the victim, and shifts responsibility for the abuser’s violent behavior.

Speaking of his decision to lead this charity campaign Hozier said “Domestic violence is an ongoing issue in our society, the statistics of which are shocking and the effects of which damage whole families, communities and span generations.

“With the song Cherry Wine, I tried to get across the difficulty of coming to terms with and facing up to domestic violence and the dynamic of an abusive relationship. I’m honored to be joined by Saoirse Ronan, Dearbhla Walsh [the Emmy Award-winning director] and Moe Dunford in spreading awareness on this issue.”

Saoirse Ronan added “I am equally honored to join Hozier to create awareness for the #FaceUpToDomesticViolence campaign with the release of “Cherry Wine” as a charity single. The song has always been one of my favorite tracks on his album. I hope through the video and song we can shine light on the issue and complexity of domestic abuse and in doing so help those caught up in the cycle of domestic violence.”

Hozier, Columbia Records, Island Records and Sony/ATV Music Publishing have all agreed to donate the proceeds from downloads of this special single to a series of international domestic abuse charity organizations, which provide support to victims and survivors of domestic abuse while also engaging in advocacy and community outreach.

Still of Saoirse Ronan in the Hozier video.

Still of Saoirse Ronan in the Hozier video.

Sharon O’Halloran, the CEO of Safe Ireland, the designated Irish charity in this campaign, expressed her thanks to both Hozier and all involved in highlighting this issue in Ireland.

“In the words of French poet Victor Hugo ‘Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent.’ On behalf of all of the women and children that our SAFE Ireland members work with, we say thank you to Hozier and all involved in releasing Cherry Wine.

“The video featuring Saoirse Ronan captures the complexity of domestic violence and gives us insight into the justifications that can keep people trapped in soul destroying violence. It is only when this is exposed that we can really begin to address the control that is at the heart of abusive relationships. Leadership on this issue, like that expressed by Hozier, can help us all to face up to the daily realities of domestic violence so that together we can make Ireland the safest place in the world for women, men and children.”

Safe Ireland, has a particular focus on male violence against women and children. According to their recent report:

- 1 in 4 women experience physical and sexual violence from a male partner. That means 440,000 women living in Ireland are or have been in this situation.

- 79% of women in Ireland never disclosed serious physical or sexual violence by a partner to anyone. This equates to 347,000 women living in Ireland.

- 1 in 3 women experience severe psychological violence from a male partner. That’s 580,000 women living in Ireland.

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