The Bangor Celtic Crossroads Festival is akin to a small halls festival. The festival’s mission is to bring high quality music and cultural programming to Bangor from the six Celtic nations: Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, Brittany and the Isle of Man as well as the diaspora, including Maine. The BCC festival is organized by a group of interested folks from the greater Bangor region. They have incorporated, developed a board, applied for a 501 C3 non-profit status and with the help of New England Celtic Arts, put on a concert series that began in January 2017.
The goal of the board is to create a festival that draws visitors to Bangor in mid-September, extending the tourist season, provides economic development to the local economy and creates a really fun as well as educational experience for those who attend.
The larger festival conceived by the board will take place in 2018. But this year, the group is launching a mini-festival to help raise awareness, create a volunteer group and have some fun.
To that end we are bringing two very dynamic performances, Còig on Friday and Matt and Shannon Heaton on Saturday. The two performances represent Scottish (Cape Breton) and Irish musical traditions. Còig includes Darren McMullen, who plays guitar, mandolin, mandola, banjo, bouzouki whistle and flute and vocals, Rachel Davis on fiddle and viola and vocals, Jason Roach on piano and Chrissy Crowley on fiddle and viola.
Matt and Shannon Heaton are poised, passionate American performers with Irish roots and universal appeal. Shannon plays Irish flute and Matt plays guitar. Shannon has a beautiful singing voice and enthralls audiences with her warm connection to their audiences. They move listeners with their love of traditional music (and each other), and their sense of adventure and fun in exploring new directions and possibilities.
Partnering with the Bangor Public Library, the festival will have a gala opening on Thursday September 14 from 6-8 pm. Free and open to the public, the gala will provide Celtic refreshments, an exhibit of Jim Counihan’s photographs of Ireland, a performance of a Scottish folk tale and Celtic harp by Daryne Rockett and an opportunity to connect with others interested in Celtic Cultures. Also on Saturday, the library is hosting two free genealogy workshops to help people learn about their own ancestry.
Following this, guests are invited to listen to the dynamic fiddling of Gus LaCasse at Paddy Murphy’s Pub on Main Street before the Saturday evening performance of Matt and Shannon Heaton.