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Line-up announced for 2009 Celtic Colours International Festival

Celtic Colours International Festival(Sydney, NS) Celtic Colours International Festival organizers are pleased to release their line-up for 2009 today and excited about this year’s focus on the ties to and influence of Irish music and culture.

The festival kicks off with Island to Island: The Cape Breton-Ireland Musical Bridge, in Port Hawkesbury on October 9. It’s a concert that goes to the root of it all, says Artistic Director Joella Foulds. “In 1993, a group of Cape Breton musicians were invited to Ireland to put on a Cape Breton festival in Cork. Now, we have invited the Irish here to share their cultural traditions in this concert and throughout the nine days of the Festival.”

Twenty-four artists from Ireland will be participating in the Festival this year which runs from October 9-17. Their presence will contribute to an exploration of tradition and culture and how that is maintained through generations and in communities. People might not recognize the names of some of the Irish artists, but they are the people who are carrying on the tradition.

“We want our audience to experience the real thing,” Foulds explains, “just as they would with our Cape Breton artists. These Irish artists represent the best of the various traditions including Donegal fiddling, the Irish harp, uillean piping, Irish Gaelic and sean nos (meaning “old style”) singing, accordion, sean nos dancing, and story telling.”

“In 1993, a group of Cape Breton musicians were invited to Ireland to put on a Cape Breton festival in Cork. Now, we have invited the Irish here to share their cultural traditions in this concert and throughout the nine days of the Festival.”

- Joella Foulds (Artistic Director, Celtic Colours International Festival)

Chris and CatrionaSome of the visiting artists Celtic Colours fans may recognize from Ireland are harper Laoise Kelly from the popular group Bumblebees, Maireád Ní Mhaonaigh of Altan, and of course, Liam ó Maonlaí who was a big hit last year. Returning from Scotland this year is the fiddle harp duo Chris Stout and Catriona McKay; fiddler Sarah McFadyen from Harem Scarem and the Unusual Suspects; Mairi Campbell who performed with the Cast in 1997; and Gaelic singer Brian Ó hEadhra.

Canadian artists returning to the Festival this year include Le Vent du Nord from Quebec, fiddler Sierra Noble from Manitoba, and Jim Payne & Fergus O’Byrne from Newfoundland while Abby Newton and Kim Robertson will be traveling from the US.

This year, there will be concerts paying tribute to influential Cape Breton fiddlers Sandy MacIntyre, Angus Chisholm and Jerry Holland. There are also a couple of very special shows in the works. One is Suite Silver Dart, featuring Symphony Nova Scotia, which will premiere Friday at the Savoy with an encore performance on Saturday afternoon at Strathspey Place. Another is a show called The Fiddle Tree, October 12 in Sydney Mines at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, a new venue this year. This show will put luthier Otis Tomas’s work, both his instruments and his music, on display in a way not to be missed. And also fitting into the category of not be missed shows is Traveling Tunes, a show that takes advantage of the expertise of this year’s Artists in Residence Paul Cranford from Cape Breton and Máire O’Keeffe from Ireland. They will be discussing tunes and how they make their way around the world in a show that includes some of Cape Breton’s foremost composers and carriers of the tunes. As usual there will be a number of shows featuring Gaelic song, piping, fiddling and traditional dance as well as the Acadien roots of Cape Breton’s music.

For those who want to experience the festival more deeply, there is once again an extensive program of hundreds of Cultural Opportunities available in communities all around the Island.

For the full schedule and lineup of artists visit www.celtic-colours.com. Tickets will go on sale July 6 at 9am ADT. They can be purchased online through our website or by phoning our Box Office at 567-3000 locally or 1-888-355-7744 (toll free in North America). {loadposition addthis}

Call toll free for more information +1(877) 285-2321