Sinéad O’Connor received a standing ovation when she accepted the Classic Irish Album award at the Choice Music Prize event in Dublin last night, Thursday, March 9.

“I want to dedicate it to each and every member of Ireland’s refugee community. And not just the Ukrainian one," O’Connor said, drawing applause.

“You’re very welcome in Ireland. Mashallah. I love you very much and I wish you happiness. Thank you.” 

So so honoured to have the legend that is @SineadOConnor here to collect her Irish Classic Album award tonight.

— RTÉ Choice Music (@choiceprize) March 9, 2023

O’Connor was making a rare public appearance to accept the Classic Irish Album award for her 1990  hit “I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got” at Thursday night’s 18th annual RTÉ Choice Music Prize. Dave Fanning presented O’Connor with her award.

The judging panel felt the ten songs on the album represented “a stunning body of work by an Irish artist, scorching with originality in songs that are as resonant today as they were more than 30 years ago.”

The team at Choice Music Prize, who said it was honored to have O’Connor as a guest to accept her prize on Thursday night, noted how O’Connor’s "dominant presence in Irish music, both at home and abroad, spans five decades thanks to her iconic voice and her uncompromising approach to life."

O’Connor was one of five winners who accepted prizes at this year’s Choice Music Prize event, which celebrates the best in Irish recorded music and has become one of the music industry highlights of the year since its inception in 2005.

The Irish Album of the Year prize went to CMAT for “If My Wife New I’d Be Dead." The Irish singer-songwriter also received a cheque for €10,000, provided by the Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO) and the Irish Recorded Music Association (IRMA), as well as a specially-commissioned award. Irish Drag Queen Lavender collected the award on her behalf as CMAT is away on tour.

..... does anyone know if sinead o’connor was still in the room when i was announced as the winner 🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺🥺lots of reasons for me to cry right now but that might make me faint

— cmat (@cmatbaby) March 9, 2023

Moncrieff’s Irish Song of the Year winner “Warm” was selected from a shortlist of 10 songs by public vote (Ireland only), via the RTÉ 2FM and Choice Music Prize websites. Fans were given the chance to get behind their favourite Irish song of 2022 until midnight last Sunday.

Conor Curley from Fontaines D.C. picked up their Irish Artist of the Year prize, and Cian Ducrot won the Irish Breakthrough Artist of the Year.

Did you say Breakthrough Irish Artist of the Year? INSANE!!! Thank you so much @choiceprize !! 🤍 What a wild year so far 🤍

— Cian Ducrot (@Cian_ducrot) March 9, 2023

Thursday’s event, hosted by RTÉ 2FM’s Tracy Clifford, took place live in Vicar St in Dublin and was broadcast live on 2FM with Jenny Greene, including exclusive performances from five of the nominated artists.

RTÉ2 will broadcast a one-hour TV programme of the RTÉ Choice Music Prize, featuring performances from the five acts, along with interviews by Bláthnaid Treacy on Thursday, March 16 at 11:30 pm.