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December 1 3:00 pm
Now in its 23rd successive year, Tomaseen Foley’s A Celtic Christmas hits the road immediately after Thanksgiving. This year’s show features some of the finest and most authentic exponents of the Celtic arts performing anywhere today, on either side of the Atlantic. At its center is native Irish storyteller, Tomaseen Foley.
A Celtic Christmas is a re-creation of a night before Christmas in the West of Ireland in the 1940s, before the motorcar, the television, and the telephone. In the remote parish of Teampall an Ghleanáin–Tomáseen Foley’s birthplace–the neighbors gathered at each other’s farmhouses and brought with them their fiddles, uilleann pipes, flutes, whistles, and bodhráns for a night of traditional Irish music, traditional carols, traditional Irish dancing, and, of course, storytelling. A Celtic Christmas brings to life just such a night – a wholesome, cultural, family feast directly from the rich table of communal life in the west of Ireland.
“Long, long before Riverdance,” Tomáseen says, “ordinary country people knocked sparks off the bare flagstone of their neighbor’s floor as they danced jigs, reels, and hornpipes with their hob-nailed boots, and the rafter rang with the fiery music of the fiddle and the pipes.”
The show’s Music Director is Grammy Award winner William Coulter – an internationally recognized master of the steel-string guitar. He has been performing and recording traditional Celtic and American folk music for more than 20 years.
Tomáseen Foley is a master of the Irish narrative, and a keeper of the flame for a priceless piece of Irish culture.