Celtic Colours 2009 on the way
It’s time to begin thinking about October on Cape Breton. Your mind might be more on summer trips just now, it’s true. but the people of Celtic Colours International Festival have just announced a stellar line up of artists who will be appearing across the island in venues ranging from concert halls to school houses to churches to community centers -- Celtic Colours is a true community event, and that community is the whole of Cape Breton.
Artists from Ireland will be featured this year at the festival, which runs from 9 through 17 October. Though artists from Ireland often take part in the festival, this year a full two dozen will be on hand through the days of the gathering. “These Irish artists represent the best of the various traditions, including Donegal fiddling, the Irish harp, uillean piping, Irish and sean nos singing, accordion, sean nos dancing, and story telling,” says festival artistic director Joella Foulds. Harper Laoise Kelly from the popular group Bumblebees, fiddler and singer Maireád Ní Mhaonaigh of Altan, and sean nos singer Liam ó Maonlaí, who was a big hit at last year's festival, are among the Irish musicians who will participate.
Cape Breton’s roots run deep into Scottish tradition as well -- it is after all, part of Nova Scotia -- and this year adventurous harp player Catriona McKay and equally daring fiddler Chris Stout will make return appearances at the festival, as will fiddler Sarah McFayden from Orkney, who has played with Harem Scarem as well as Celtic big band The Unusual Suspects and is well familiar with Cape Breton, as she attended the Gaelic College at St. Ann's. Abby Newton and Kim Richardson are among the artists from the United States who will appear, and Le Vent du Nord, who nearly blew the roof off the festival club with a high energy jam a few years back, travel from their native Quebec again this autumn.
Cape Breton may be a small island in the northern reaches of Atlantic Canada, but its music and musicians have been heard around the world, and for Celtic Colours, many of them come home to join the party. This year, those artists include Kimberly Fraser, Wendy MacIsaac, and the Barra MacNeils.
In addition to the music, there will be workshops, art exhibits, talks on music, history, and culture, outdoor activities, and community meals. It is is time to begin thinking about October on Cape Breton. Details, schedules, links to to tourism information, and a lively discussion forum may all be found at the festival’s web site.
Tickets will go on sale July 6 at 9am Atlantic Daylight Time. They can be purchased online through the web site noted just above or by phoning the Box Office at 567-3000 on Cape Breton locally or 1-888-355-7744 (toll free in North America).
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