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a Celtic Christmas Celebration
will present an evening of music, song and dance associated with the festive season. The performance will include Christmas songs both old and new, all played with a Celtic twist, as well as selections from the band’s new album.
The California-based group has toured internationally since 2000 as an acoustic band, releasing thirteen CDs. In early 2016 the band traveled north to a secluded retreat among the redwoods on the Mendocino coast, where they worked night and day to put together a record that could surpass the band’s previous 12 releases. In addition to a wealth of lively Irish and Scottish jigs and reels, for this new album, “Lift”, they also recorded Scandinavian and French melodies, tapped into the old-time American tradition, and departed to include a Swedish song melody on bagpipes, and melody from a hurdy-gurdy jam which leads into a Quebecois reel.
Molly’s Revenge, whose lineup includes bagpipes, fiddle, whistle, guitar, mandola, and bodhran, have toured extensively in the USA as well as Australia, China and Scotland. The band is known for its unique and infectious on-stage enthusiasm. Their arrangements of traditional jigs and reels bring these dance tunes up to date with a driving, hard-edged accent that always leaves audiences shouting for more.
Guest vocalist Amelia Hogan sings traditional, Irish, Scottish, British, American and contemporary folk music with lilting grace and subtle power. She transports you with a spell into another time and place, where the beansidhe (banshee) cries and lovers embrace. Haunting melodies, stirring passion, and evocative storytelling are what you’ll find with Amelia’s music.
The Murray Irish Dancers bring a percussive, joyful, and colorful exuberance to the stage. This 13th Annual Celtic Christmas Celebration will capture the traditional spirit of the season and warm the hearts of all.
“A seriously joyous, masterly musical experience.”
— Tom Clancy, Irish Music Magazine
The Murray School of Irish Dancing offers classes for students of all ages and levels wishing to become outstanding Irish dancers. At the Murray school we believe in supporting students through enhancing their self esteem and confidence. We also encourage our students to work hard and strive for excellence. Through this they will develop skills that will last a lifetime. We endeavor to create a safe learning environment for all students through mutual respect and responsibility towards all teachers, students and parents in The Murray School. We welcome students from all levels of dance experience and of all cultural backgrounds to learn about Irish Culture, Music and Dance and to be part of the Murray team.
These folks gave an outstanding concert last year. The crowd was enthusiastic, especially when the musicians upped the tempo and the Irish dancers joined in with gusto. David Brewer is the most vigorous piper I have ever seen. He also plays whistles and bodhran (Celtic drum). The group has fun playing songs of the season with a Celtic twist. Amelia has a gorgeous voice and lovely vocal ornamentation.
“Best of all, RUNA sounds like no one else!” – Travis Rogers, Jr., Music Life & Times
Quickly gaining recognition as one of Irish music’s new “super-groups,” RUNA has been en- chanting audiences by pushing the boundaries of Irish folk music into the Americana and roots music formats since their formation in 2008. Interweaving the haunting melodies and exuberant tunes of Ireland and Scotland with the lush harmonies and intoxicating rhythms of jazz, bluegrass, flamenco and blues, they offer a thrilling and redefining take on traditional music.
The group has been honored internationally, winning Top Group and Top Traditional Group in the Irish Music Awards and four Independent Music Awards including Best Live Album, Best World/Traditional Song and Best Bluegrass Song.
“Timeless and flawless…” – Jim Allford, PA Music Scene
RUNA consists of vocalist and step-dancer, Shannon Lambert-Ryan of Philadelphia, Dublin-born guitarist, Fionán de Barra, Cheryl Prashker of Canada on percussion, Zach White of St. Louis on guitar, vocals and mandolin, and Maggie White of Kentucky on the fiddle and Mandolin.
RUNA recently released their fifth album, “RUNA: LIVE”, which was recorded at the BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown, MD on Thursday, March 17th, 2016. Receiving lavish praise on both sides of the Atlantic, the album has been hailed as “an incredible masterpiece” – Marcene Bronson, The Celtic Crier
Seeking to preserve and continue a traditional culture in a modern age, RUNA creates the backbone of its signature roots sound from the musical and geographical diversity of its individually established band members. Their strive for excellence and creativity blazes a trail for the future of folk music, earning them the reputation as one of the most innovative Irish folk groups of this generation.
“Genuine and with endless innovation…” – John O’Brien, Jr., Ohio Irish American News
The Outside Track is a Pan Celtic group that performs Scots, Irish and Cape Breton songs and stepdance.
Mairi Rankin, one of the hugely influential Rankin Family – legends on the Canadian music scene – plays fiddle, sings and also step-dances up a storm. Born in Mabou, Nova Scotia, Mairi has been influenced by some of the best Cape Breton traditional musicians and instructors on the island. She has developed her own unique style by being immersed in such a rich musical culture. She has toured nationally and internationally as a solo artist, a sideman and is a member of the Cape Breton Celtic super group Beolach. She has performed with the Rankin Sisters, Unusual Suspects and Bruce Guthro to name but a few. Mairi has recorded one solo album, two CDs with Beolach and has been featured on numerous compilations and recordings
Teresa Horgan, from Co. Cork, has an emotive singing style. “She has just enough world weariness in her vocals to interpret…songs and make them her own.” – Tony Lawless, Tradconnect. Teresa was immersed in music from a young age, playing with her family and later went on to obtain an honours degree in Irish Music and Dance at the University of Limerick. She recorded two albums with award-winning Irish band, ‘FullSet’, and one album with guitarist, Matt Griffin, called ‘Brightest Sky Blue’. She was also privileged to perform on the prestigious TV show, ‘The Late Late show’. She has toured extensively and shared the stage with The Chieftains, Declan O’Rourke, Andy Irvine, Lúnasa and more.
From the Highland village of Evanton, Fiona Black developed a love of music and dance from a young age. The feisean movement provided her the opportunity to nurture her passion through learning to play the piano accordion. Fiona went on to attend the National Centre of Excellence in Traditional Music where she honed her skills as an accordionist and gained valuable experience arranging, performing, composing and recording. Fiona set off for Limerick in 2005 where she completed a BA with Honours in Irish Music and Dance. During this degree, Fiona further developed her skills as a performer, arranger, teacher and composer while also traveling to Cape Breton during her third year of studies. Fiona’s accordion style incorporates many different influences, intertwining her native Scottish style with Irish, Swedish and Cape Breton repertoire, always adding her distinctive rhythm and vibrancy.
Ailie Robertson from Edinburgh is widely regarded as one of Scotland’s leading young traditional musicians. She is a musician in the broadest sense: composer, arranger, teacher, improviser and harp virtuoso. Her accomplishment on the clarsach is such that leading Irish flautist Niall Keegan said: “Ailie’s synthesis of Irish, Scottish and contemporary harping technique into an individual style represents the realisation of otherwise unimagined possibilities for the Celtic harp.” Ailie grew up in Edinburgh, Scotland, and was immersed in the harp world from an early age. She began playing the clarsach when she was eleven years old and through her piano and clarsach lessons she developed a love for both classical and traditional music. In 2009 she was nominated for ‘Up and Coming Artist of the Year’ in the BBC Alba Scots Trad Music Awards. Ailie is in great demand as a teacher around the world, and has published six books of harp music.
Michael Ferrie is an award-winning guitarist and composer from Callander, Scotland. A former student of Sgoil Chiùil na Gàidhealtachd (National Centre of Excellence in Traditional Music) and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Ferrie is currently studying on the MMus Folk Music program at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland. Ferrie was named Highland Young Guitarist in 2010. In 2013 Ferrie was commissioned to compose for the Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s ‘Out and About’ week, and in the same year was nominated for the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award with Scottish folk band ‘Thalla’.
After taking America by storm on their first U.S. tour, the 2014 Irish Music Association Best New Band Socks in the Frying Pan released their eagerly awaited second album- The Return of the Giant Sock Monsters from Outer Space
The award winning trio from County Clare have captivated audiences the world around with their high energy performances, breath-taking musical ability and their trademark 3 part vocal harmonies, and have returned with the follow up to their debut award winning 2013 album.
The new album offers 6 sets of tunes, tastefully diverse and brilliantly crafted, combined with 6 songs, showcasing both vocal and harmonising abilities of each member on their respective songs, totalling a dozen stand-out tracks that will captivate and mesmerize the listener. Demonstrating creative versatility, several of the tunes and one of the songs have been written and arranged by the band. The album experience is exactly that which one encounters at a live Socks show- a high energy, masterfully performed collection of music and song that demonstrates exactly why Socks in the Frying Pan is fast becoming a household name and why they are one of the most loved and sought after Irish bands in the world today.
“Their Sound flows in magnetic, energetic waves, so does their banter on stage”
–Irish Music Magazine
Described by Irish Music Magazine as “A full bodied pipe and whistle extravaganza” Réalta make full use of the intricate melodies and driving rhythms that make Irish music so loved throughout the world.
Performing on dueling uilleann pipes, whistles, bodhrán, guitar, bouzouki, double bass and vocals, this award winning, Belfast based band will lead the listener on a journey of music and song through the full range of the Irish tradition…
… or as Herald Scotland put it, “Réalta carry on the Bothy Band tradition of taking tunes by the scruff of the neck and firing excitement through them like hot flames! “
The Tannahill Weavers are one of Scotland’s premier traditional bands. Their diverse repertoire spans the centuries with fire-driven instrumentals, topical songs, and original ballads and lullabies. Their music demonstrates to old and young alike the rich and varied musical heritage of the Celtic people. These versatile musicians have received worldwide accolades consistently over the years for their exuberant performances and outstanding recording efforts that seemingly can’t get better…yet continue to do just that.
The Tannahills have turned their acoustic excitement loose on audiences with an electrifying effect. They have that unique combination of traditional melodies, driving rhythmic accompaniment, and rich vocals that make their performances unforgettable. As the Winnipeg Free Press noted, “The Tannahill Weavers – properly harnessed – could probably power an entire city for a year on the strength of last night’s concert alone. The music may be old time Celtic, but the drive and enthusiasm are akin to straight ahead rock and roll.”
Born of a session in Paisley, Scotland and named for the town’s historic weaving industry and local poet laureate Robert Tannahill, the group has made an international name for its special brand of Scottish music, blending the beauty of traditional melodies with the power of modern rhythms. Over the years the Tannies have been trailblazers for Scottish music, and their tight harmonies and powerful, inventive arrangements have won them fans from beyond the folk and Celtic music scenes.
In 2011 the band was inducted into the Scottish Traditional Music Hall of Fame, and in 2014 they were joined by innovative piper Lorne MacDougall. Lorne comes with a high pedigree, having arranged and performed pipes for the Disney Pixar movie “Brave”, Dreamworks “How to Train Your Dragon 2”, and the BBCs “Dr Who”, along with a long list of other accomplishments.
As they embark on their 50th anniversary year in 2018, they are firmly established as one of the premier groups on the concert stage. From reflective ballads to footstomping reels and jigs, the variety and range of the material they perform is matched only by their enthusiasm and lively Celtic spirits.”An especially eloquent mixture of the old and the new.” –New York Times
Scotland’s Tannahill Weavers play acoustic instruments, but the atmosphere at their shows is electric. The quartet is as tight and as versatile as any band in the Celtic music revival. They can summon rock ‘n’ roll intensity or haunting introspection.”
– The Boston Globe, Boston MA
“…as close to perfect as it gets in an imperfect world.” – Sing Out!
“…the Weavers’ unpretentious manner and superlative playing set them apart from most other Celtic groups… In a world where good taste has become a scarce commodity, the Tannahill Weavers are a wealthy bunch.” – The Charleston Gazette, Charleston, SC
“…world class musicians with passion and a healthy sense of fun, keeping alive and making accessible the very heart of the tradition itself.” – Mojo Magazine