March 9, 2022
Two years after the ill-fated 2020 “A St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn” tour, which had the misfortune to coincide with the beginning of the Covid lockdowns, the show – presented in virtual format last year – is set for an in-person theatrical run.
Created, produced and hosted by GBH broadcaster Brian O’Donovan, “A St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn” has performances scheduled for Shalin Liu Performance Center, Rockport (March 16); Hanover Theatre, Worcester (March 17); Zeiterion Theatre, New Bedford (March 18); Somerville Theatre (March 19, two shows); and The Cabot Theatre, Beverly (March
20). There is also an option to watch performances in virtual format.
“A St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn” has similarities to that other O’Donovan creation, “A Christmas Celtic Sojourn,” in that both productions typically feature music, dance, songs, and spoken word associated with Ireland, Scotland, and other Celtic-related traditions.
But as O’Donovan explained in a past interview with Boston Irish, the St. Patrick’s Day edition has its own identity and purpose. “St. Patrick’s Day is a largely American phenomenon, after all, so that gives the show a different kind of perspective to begin with. For me, ‘St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn’ is intended as a journey, constantly looking at where the Irish have travelled, how the Irish have influenced others – and in turn, been influenced by others.”
O’Donovan recently provided an update on the cast for this year: Ye Vagabonds, the duo of Carlow brothers Brían and Diarmuid Mac Gloinn, was slated to be on the bill for 2022, but due to delays in visa processing are now unable to take part. Meanwhile, Scottish fiddler Alasdair White – a former member of Scotland’s beloved and pioneering Battlefield Band – has been added since the show was announced in December.
Also scheduled to appear are:
•Vermont guitarist-pianist-vocalist Keith Murphy, who will once again take on the role as music director, in addition to providing some of the music himself.
•Harpist and vocalist Dominique Dodge, a native New Englander who recently released a gorgeous album of Scottish Gaelic songs.
•Boston-based traditional Irish quartet Ship in the Clouds, whose sound is fueled by the melodic chemistry between fiddler Laura Feddersen and accordionist Natasha Sheehy, with spot-on rhythmic accompaniment by guitarist Nathan Gourley and Anna Colliton on bodhran.
•Attleboro native Torrin Ryan, an uilleann piper (also plays flute and whistle) who has competed – and won – in the All-Ireland Fleadh.
•Three-time World Irish Step Dancing Championships winner Ashley Smith-Wallace, from Boston, who brings a theatrical mien to her Irish step dancing.
Tickets and updates are available at celticsojournlive.