Arts and Entertainment

Brian Conway makes no bones about it: He understands that his particular tutelage in the Irish music tradition was a profoundly rare thing, and he feels very fortunate as a result. “I think that, in my upbringing, I definitely got the music pure,” says... Read more
Baritone, pianist, and conductor Bradford Conner is on a mission. He sincerely hopes you’ll love great American music as much as he does. One conversation proves he has a devotion and an insight for it that few others possess. Classically trained, Brad... Read more
BY SEAN SMITH SPECIAL TO THE BIR It seemed like most any typical all-ages holiday gathering, and in many ways, it was. A Christmas tree stood in the corner of the living room, right by the entry to the dining room. Christmas decorations graced the... Read more
By Sean Smith Special to the BIR It’s not just Irish dance aficionados and child development experts who can find grist for conversation in “Jig.” Add classical philosophers to the list, too. Sue Bourne’s documentary on Irish competitive dancing, released... Read more
BY R. J. DONOVAN SPECIAL TO THE BIR Nestled on 10 acres of waterfront property along Dorchester’s Columbia Point, the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum faces the sea, an apt location given JFK’s love of the ocean. If you’ve never visited the... Read more
Rockette Courtney Grassia performs in ‘Radio City Christmas Spectacular’ When The Radio City Rockettes light up the stage at The Wang Theatre all this month with their new “Radio City Christmas Spectacular,” there’ll be a Boston-area native front and... Read more
Northern Irish traditional singer Len Graham, Boston-area fiddle band Halali, and cross-genre Canadian singer Ruth Moody of The Wailin’ Jennys join the cast for the ninth annual “Christmas Celtic Sojourn,” the popular holiday-themed showcase of music,... Read more
One of Greater Boston's most popular Irish pubs, The Burren in Somerville's Davis Square, has relaunched its "Backroom" series of concerts featuring top-notch Irish/Celtic performers from the Boston area and elsewhere. Fiddler Winifred Horan and... Read more
On one recent early autumn evening, a severe rainstorm with winds of up to 70 mph battered the 150-year-old house in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, that Boston-area fiddler Doug Lamey now calls home. In a couple of months, the rain will be replaced by an even... Read more
Herman Melville's "Moby Dick" has long ranked as one of the great novels of English literature. Written in 1851, the classic tale follows the tyrannical Captain Ahab in his relentless pursuit of the great white whale Moby Dick. Despite having already... Read more
First of two parts For most of his adult life, Andy Irvine has been true to the advice he set down in one of his best-loved songs: Never tire of the road. Irvine’s ongoing odyssey – which this month brings him to Boston, where he’ll perform on Oct. 6 at... Read more
Joe DerraneA special tribute to the legendary Joe Derrane – and a performance by the Boston-born Irish accordionist and composer himself – will highlight this fall’s Gaelic Roots Music, Dance, and Lecture series. The series, under the direction of... Read more
By Sean Smith Special to the BIR There is no one formula or blueprint for forming a band. Sometimes it's by conscious design, sometimes it's a matter of happenstance, a confluence of the right factors at the right time. And then there's Long Time Courting... Read more
By R.J. Donovan Special to the BIR Actor, singer, pianist and director Will McGarrahan has been part of Boston's theater community for more than a decade. During that time, he has established himself as one of the city's most reliable and diverse talents... Read more
By R. J. Donovan Special to The BIR Award-winning Broadway star Patrick Cassidy represents one branch of a far-reaching family tree of musical performers.  His Mom is Shirley Jones (he was actually conceived during the filming of “The Music Man”).  His... Read more
By Sean Smith Special to the BIR One of Massachusetts’s favorite Irish imports, the rock band The Saw Doctors, returns this month for its annual appearance at the Cape Cod Melody Tent in Hyannis, with performances on Aug. 11 and 12. Formed in Tuam in the... Read more
By Sean Smith Dan Isaacson’s Simple System, “Traditional Irish Music for the Flute”—Isaacson is fondly remembered by many Boston-area Irish musicians and listeners for his playing at local sessions, and in particular with the band The Magic Square, whose... Read more
A column of news and updates of the Boston Celtic Music Fest (BCMFest), which celebrates the Boston area’s rich heritage of Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton music and dance with a grassroots, musician-run winter music festival and other events during the year... Read more
By Joe Leary Special to the BIR Filled with deep laughter, happy songs, humorous political history lessons, and Dick Flavin’s magnificent acting, this one-man performance of “According to Tip” holds the audience’s attention riveted to the stage. Flavin... Read more
By R. J. Donovan Special to The BIR Fans of ABC-TV’s “Dancing With The Stars” may have noticed that a good-looking young Irishman joined the show this past season as a member of The Dance Troupe. His name is Tristan MacManus, but what not everyone may... Read more