....the concert told the story of dark days of fighting leading to the joy of freedom!
The show began softly and poignantly with the fiddle of former Dubliner John Sheahan, the deep vocals of Declan O'Rourke and songs of heroes of the Easter Rising.
We might easily have been fooled into thinking this was going to be a serious night, however, the stage was set for a much greater array of musicians and when Irish legends The Chieftains took to the stage the reels and jigs began.
Alyth McCormack read the Roisin Dubh over Moloney’s whistle – and then she sang impressively in Gaelic 'music of the mouth' - 'The Foggy Dew' into 'Poirt' A Beul'. The audience was also treated to some energetic Irish dancing by Canadian fiddler John Polanski and his brother.
Next to sing was Karan Casey with 'The Mountains of Pomeroy' - she remarked that 'Freedoms do not fall from the sky, they need to be fought for'. Silver-haired Kris Kristofferson, with his honey-toned vocals sang, 'Help me Make It Through the Night' and 'Bobbie McGee'.
The second half was a musical celebration and a joy filled party. Robert Maxwell conducted a half orchestra – (my son played with him years back on a wonderful trip to Gozo!). Scots singer Eddi Reader was up first and sang 'Light Over the Horizon' and spoke of Scotland's connection to the Easter Rising through people such as James Connolly.
The Glasgow Gaelic Choir performed 'Shenandoah' and 'The Long Journey Home'. To demonstrate those Celtic connections The Chieftains and the orchestra played a Galician Overture with Moloney’s uilleann pipes over the Spanish acoustic guitar. Several well known Scottish pipers joined in for the 'March to Battle'. This was followed by an exuberant finale with solo performances greeted with a rapturous standing ovation!
It was a rip-roaring night of fun!
The Chieftains are a traditional Irish band from Dublin that consist of Paddy Moloney, Sean Potts and Michael Tubridy
Review & Photos Pauline Keightley - http://pkimage.co.uk/