Celtic Nights : The Emigrants Bridge. Journey of Hope and Promise tour visits SUNY Oswego.
Celtic Nights consists of six members, three male vocalists and three female vocalists: Derek Moloney, Derek Ryan, Ross William Wild, Rebekah Robertson, Suzanne Savage and Una Pedreschi. All of the members are from Ireland, with the exception of Ross William Wild and Rebekah Robertson, who hail from Scotland. During their shows, the group performs songs that tell stories of Irish heritage. At their recent performance at SUNY Oswego, the group performed in front of a sold out crowd.
Main Theme of the Concerts.
The main theme behind Celtic Nights’ performances is to share stories and folklore that come from Ireland with their audiences. The songs that are performed expressed the difficulties that Irish immigrants had to suffer through during their journey to America. The song, “My Grandfather’s Emmigrant Eyes,” performed by Rebekah Robertson, is about the trials that the songwriter’s grandfather met during his trip to America. In the song, the lyrics discussed the granddaughter’s feelings when she looked at her grandfather. During the shows, Suzanne Savage and Derek Ryan sing the song, “My Love Is In America,” a song about a husband and wife being separated due to the fact that he had to go to America for work to support his family.
Aside from melancholy songs that the group performed, such as “Danny Boy,” a song about a boy going off to war; the group also keeps the audience entertained with fun songs. The group encourages the audience to sing and dance along, and simply to have a good time.
Other Members of the Group.
Aside from the six vocalists, the Celtic Nights dancers also share their talents with their audiences by performing traditional Irish step dancing. The dancers’ footwork is a wonder to watch, and the members of the audience can watch in awe as the dancers quickly move their feet. The group is also accompanied by three musicians: Brian Kelly played the banjo, Ben Gunnery played the fiddle and Stevie O’Connor played the guitar. Fiddle player Ben Gunnary dazzles the crowd by performing a solo, showing off his talents that include classical music and traditional Irish tunes.
Songs That Are Performed.
Ross William Wild or, according to Rebekah Robertson, “the group’s resident pretty boy,” performs several solos during the showcase. Wild covered a song by the Irish band, U2, and the audience roared with applause.
The Celtic Nights performers sing old Irish folk songs that the audiences recognized, such as “The Spanish Lady” and “Molly Malone,” and the group covered “Brown Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison. The audience sang along during these songs and stomped their feet along with the music.
This song, “Colcannon,” was performed. This song is about a traditional Irish dish that mothers would make for their children during their childhood. This song shows the traditions of families in Ireland.
Main Purpose of the shows.
The main focus of the group’s performances are to show their audiences how far the Irish and other Celtic nations have come in the past few centuries. From the story of a girl of only fifteen crossing the threshold of Elis Island for the first time or from the heartache of leaving a loved one behind to pursue a better future for themselves and the loved ones, the Celtic Nights performers convey the hardships that their people had to suffer to become free, while still keeping their Irish heritage alive.