Cape Breton’s Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald to play Bangor Maine

Ben Miller & Anita MacDonald
Bangor Celtic Crossroads and Launchpad will present Cape Breton’s Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald in concert at the Bangor Arts Exchange located at 193 Exchange Street in downtown Bangor on Nov 14, 2017. Doors open at6:00 show starts at 7:00 pm. [Buy Tickets]

Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald join together, blending the rich traditional sound of the Cape Breton fiddle, with the fiery edge of the Scottish Border pipes. Combining their creative vision with influences from Old and New World Gaelic traditions, they create a powerful sound. Since meeting at the 2013 Celtic Colours Festival, Ben & Anita have toured across North America and further afield, wowing audiences with their captivating blend of driving dance tunes and soulful Gaelic airs.

Ben is an American-born player of Scottish bagpipes.His interest in traditional music stems from his exposure to the pipes at a young age, in his hometown of Queensbury, New York,as well as his family’s strong connections to its Scottish and Irish roots, through both his American mother and Canadian father. He began studying the Highland Bagpipes around age eight, but by twelve he began to shift his focus to the bellows-blown Scottish small-pipes and Border pipes. Ben is also an academic, holding an undergraduate degree in Music, as well as a Master’s degree in Scottish Ethnology, from the University of Edinburgh’s School of Scottish Studies. His repertoire and style draw mainly on the Gaelic traditions of Western Scotland and the Canadian Maritimes, blended with a healthy dash of Irish tunes for good measure.

Anita is an accomplished musician, dancer, and Gaelic singer from Little Narrows, Cape Breton. She began step-dancing in the family kitchen at the tender age of four, and picked up the fiddle a few short years later, at age eight. She has been wowing audiences with her impeccable timing and neatly choreographed steps ever since. Anita’s fiddle playing has a distinctive sound, influenced by the deep roots of her musical family. Her energetic style has put her in demand as a performer and teacher, across Cape Breton and beyond.

Guest artists include Tyson Chen, Ottawa Ontario, on piano and Zak Cormier Wellington PEI, on foot percussion and guitar.

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Launchpad is an Arts Incubator focused on Creative Place-making in Maine through its work with emerging artists & partner organizations.

Isle of Man award winning trio Barrule return to Maine

Bangor Celtic Crossroads will present Barrule from the Isle of Man at The Hammond Street Congregational Church on Friday October 27 at 7:00 pm.

The unique sound of traditional Manx music is the Celtic World’s best kept secret. This has changed with the introduction of Barrule, the Award winning trio dedicated to taking the music of the Isle of Man to a much wider audience.

Named after the famous Manx summit where legend says the ancient Celtic God Manannan MacLir stalked his mighty fortress, Barrule fuses three distinct musical forces – gifted fiddle-player Tomas Callister, accordion wizard Paddy Callaghan  and versatile accompanist Adam Rhodes on bouzouki. Together this versatile acoustic unit creates a powerful and wholly distinctive sound.

With bold but sensitive arrangements, the trio presents a fresh take on traditional and contemporary Manx music. While sharing common ground with its Celtic cousins, as well as the English tradition, Manx music has retained its own particular and inherent Manxness: an atmosphere evoked by the music that speaks of the natural beauty of the island and the lives of its inhabitants.

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2017 Bangor Celtic Crossroads Festival

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. Continue reading “2017 Bangor Celtic Crossroads Festival”