Posted by: mdmusingsie | June 10, 2011

Back to St. Nicholas

Now that I’ve settled in, and it’s festival season, I should have some interesting stories to pass along.  Tonight I went to St. Nicholas’ church for a traditional music concert featuring Charlie Piggott on the accordion, Claire Keville on the concertina, and Roisin Elsafty, singer.

When I was here last year I went to several concerts there and they were all wonderful.  The acoustics are perfect for such an intimate setting.  The performers are atop a tomb, which may sound morbid to some, but if it were my tomb, I’d be thrilled to have such talented musicians performing on top.  It’s also under a beautiful stained glass window featuring Jesus standing over Mary Magdalene (one of the most wrongfully maligned women in history).  They are flanked by several other saints.

It’s even better this year because instead of just two nights a week, it’s three – Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  If you’re in the Galway area, it’s really worth checking out, especially if you like traditional music.

Charlie and Claire played assorted jigs, reels, hornpipes, polkas and others, interspersed with songs by Roisin.  I’m always in awe of anyone who can sing a capella (or sean nós as it’s more often called here), and there’s a reason why she has won so many accolades.  What a beautiful voice!

At the end of the concert Cormac O’Beaglaoich came up to play with Charlie and Claire, bringing with him two concertinas – a standard treble one and a larger baritone version.  He mentioned that it had been in for restoration and he’d only had it back a few months.  He must be a collector, as I remember him playing a startlingly beautiful 19th century concertina last year.   He also mentioned there is one still larger, a bass concertina and a very tiny one called a piccolo, which I’ve remember seeing someone play before.

As always it was thoroughly enjoyable and I can’t wait to go back for more.

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