Bluegrass, Arias and Ragtime

That ever-popular entertainer, Colm ‘Stride’ O’Brien returns to the Water Music Festival for a lunchtime concert at St. George’s Church on Wednesday, July 16 at 1pm.

That ever-popular entertainer, Colm ‘Stride’ O’Brien returns to the Water Music Festival for a lunchtime concert at St. George’s Church on Wednesday, July 16 at 1pm.

A ‘regular’ at the National Concert Hall where his recitals sell out, he chats about and plays the works of Ragtime & Stride Piano Legends Scott Joplin, George Gershwin, and Fats Waller.   Tributes to Al Jolson and “The Ballroom of Romance” will be highlights of this enjoyable, ‘feel good’ lunchtime event. Tickets €6.

A rousing evening of bluegrass, folk and country from “the hottest honky-tonk band east of the Pecos” is promised on Sunday night, July 20 at the Bush Hotel where the Festival is pleased to welcome Chris Meehan & His Redneck Friends. Chris is originally from Mohill, and the band has been playing together for more than 20 years. Some of Ireland’s most talented and well-respected musicians comprise the band, including Percy Robinson on pedal steel guitar, Gerry O’Connor on banjo, Matt Cranitch on violin, and Eamon Murray on saxophone and harmonica, and Bobby Kelly and Francie Lenehan on lead guitars. All musicians have mixed backgrounds -- showband, Irish traditional, American bluegrass, and blues -- a mix of elements that works very well and leads to open-minded and eclectic presentations including rock ‘n’ roll, country, and Cajun. Tickets €18, and dancing IS permitted!

The Festival’s opening event on Tuesday, July 15 at 8pm in St. George’s Church is a wonderful presentation by the Cork-based Voce Di Donna (Voice of a Woman), an operatic trio presenting an entertaining programme of popular arias, in costume, and with plenty of banter to engage the audience. Fiona O’Reilly (soprano), Christine O’Flynn (mezzo) and Bethan Lee (piano) have put together ‘Disarming Divas and Spicy Roles’, featuring well-known pieces from composers Bellini, Offenbach, Bizet, Puccini, Gounod, Strauss, Rossini and Gershwin. Tickets €15 for a very pleasant evening of music.

The full programme of the 10th Anniversary Carrick Water Music Festival is available on www.carrickwatermusicfestival.com, and a programme will be available at local outlets in the next few days. Tickets for all events can be booked through the Festival Box Office at The Dock, 071 965 0828.