Big names, Small Halls
Big names will be coming to Glengarry this fall as part of the Festival of Small Halls concert series.
Among the performers will be internationally acclaimed fiddling sensation Ashley MacIsaac, who constantly pushes the boundaries of traditional Celtic music, incorporating rock, pop, and everything imaginable in between to the delight of audiences of all ages.
He will be performing at St. James Church in Maxville Thursday, September 28 at 7:30 p.m. with Change of Step and Paddy Kelly.
MacIsaac has also performed at prestigious events such as the opening ceremonies for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics, along with Phillip Glass and The Chieftains. He has made appearances on the Conan O’Brian show, the Today Show, and has been a headliner at international festivals, theatres and halls all over the world.
Change of Step
Formed by a group of passionate world-class dancers from Nova Scotia and Ontario, Change of Step came together with a shared vision to breathe new life into traditional Scottish Highland dancing, by showcasing it in a unique, contemporary way. Change of Step’s dancers are highly accomplished: they have won numerous provincial, national, and international championship titles, including multiple World Championship titles; and they have performed at prestigious events like the Vancouver Olympics, the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, CityFolk Festival, and the Celtic Colours International Festival. Change of Step loves to collaborate with other artists. Members have had the privilege to share the stage with many highly-regarded Celtic musicians, including Breabach, Còig, Wendy MacIsaac, and Beòlach, among many others. Change of Step’s inspiring performances display the musicality, grace, and power of Highland dancing.
Bleile and Grant
Jasmine Bleile and Jenn Grant will perform as part of the Small Halls concert series September 16 at 7:30 p.m. at the Dunvegan Recreation Hall.
Jasmine Bleile, who has a degree in English literature, is also a bonafide rock and roller.
Ms. Bleile is one of the founding members of Ladies of the Canyon, a group who released two albums to wide acclaim, Haunted Woman, in 2010, and Diamond Heart, in 2013.
While with her group, she toured all over Canada, the U.S. and Europe. Her extensive touring experience has allowed her to share the stage with a litany of musical luminaries such as the Barenaked Ladies, Ron Sexsmith, Kenny Rogers, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Alan Jackson, Andy Kim, Randy Bachman, Burton Cummings, just to mention a few.
Over the last two years, Ms. Bleile has participated in Rufus and Martha Wainwright’s
Noël Nights ( broadcast on CBC/Radio-Canada) where she has sung with Robert Charlebois, Emmylou Harris, Daniel Belanger, Louis- Jean Cormier, Arianne Moffat, Rufus Wainwright, Martha Wainwright, Anna McGarrigle, Loudon Wainwright III, and Kid Koala.
Her music has been featured in the critically acclaimed television drama Sons of Anarchy (FX) and the mega-hit Heartland (CBC). She is currently doing voice work for upcoming animated short I Like Girls directed by Diana Obomsawin (NFB).
Les Poules à Colin
Folk and traditional music blend September 30 at 7:30 p.m. at La Fraternité hall in Alexandria.
Les Poules à Colin, a Québécois quintet, and Moonfruits, a duo from Ottawa, will perform as part of the Small Halls concert series.
Éléonore Pitre, Béatrix Méthé, Sarah Marchand, Marie and Colin Savoie- Levac take their name from a popular traditional song, Les Poules à Colin. The five childhood friends, who still live on the same street, share a history of music-making and family ties.
“Exposed to Québecois and other folk music from the moment they were hatched, these offspring of trad musicians were immersed in music,” the band’s bio reads.
“They have grown up with and learned their craft firsthand from some of Québec’s finest, whether backstage at international festivals or at lively kitchen jams in Lanaudière, arguably Québec’s most musical region. The five members of “the latest and youngest band out of the hot Québécois traditional music scene” are entrancing and sparkle with unpretentious, natural talent and respect for their repertoire – including beautifully arranged original and folk-trad songs and tunes.”
The group has appeared at major venues in Canada and the US, such as The Winnipeg Folk Fest, Festival de la Chanson de Tadoussac, Chants-de- Vielles, Festival Mémoire et Racines and POP Montréal.
Launched to rave reviews, Les Poules’ latest release, Ste-Waves, has charted in Queébec and has become a coup-du-coeur in stores there, with the first videoclip, TiMe, already passing 15,000 hits to date. On top of that, the group’s new release was nominated at l’ADISQ 2015 for Traditional Album of the Year.
Escorted by a banjo and a parlour guitar, Moonfruits’ “soaring harmonies captivate listeners and celebrate common ground.” Partners on and off stage, Kaitlin Milroy and Alex Millaire “summon music from a place where ideals and imagination intertwine.”
The most recent release, SteQuequepart, or “SaintSomewhere,” is described as “a conduit for the villagers’ struggle with the all-too-common realities of small town economic hardship and the pressure to abandon their traditional ways of life in favour of big business and an uncertain future.”
The duo says, “While the album is sung completely in French, the sense of each character is intimated so effectively through the music, that speaking the language isn’t crucial to understanding the album.”
SENSATION: Ashley MacIsaac brings his original style to Maxville September 28 in one of a series of shows featuring a wide range of talent.
DIVERSE LINE- UP: Les Poules à Colin (left) and Change of Step are among the acts coming to Glengarry this fall.