HighTime, a trio from the heart of Connemara, Ireland, will soon be on tour in the United States. Their first concert will be in Wisconsin this Friday, Feb. 14, one day after their arrival stateside. The following week, they will be on stage in Wellsboro.
At 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22, Ciarán Bolger, Séamus Ó Flatharta and Michael Coult will play and sing traditional Irish music with an intriguing blend of modern folk influences and bold new arrangements for a tasty platter of story, song and dance. Their energy-fueled performance will be sure to get hands clapping and toes tapping.
The audience will be delighted by their rich, unique sound; intricate three-part vocal harmonies; the melding of their instruments — flute, Celtic harp, guitar, whistles and bódhran drum; and displays of rhythmic Irish step dancing. This trio performs with “a breathtaking energy and a passion that is effortless, drivingly soulful and fun”.
The group will sing a range of songs from the Irish tradition in Irish and English. Some of the songs are well known, made famous by the Dubliners, an Irish folk band that performed for 50 years, from 1962 until 2012. Other songs will be new to the audience.
Séamus and Ciarán grew up in the Village of Ardmore on Ireland’s rugged west coast. Their homes were about one-tenth of a mile apart. Throughout their lives, these two men have been immersed in the region’s rich and diverse Irish musical heritage giving them a unique musical connection.
As a youngster, Ciarán learned to play the whistle and traditional Irish sean-nós (“old-style”) singing. In his teens, he focused on guitar and explored a mixture of traditional and contemporary music. A natural entertainer and storyteller, Ciarán tells the stories about some of the songs the trio performs.
When he was four, Séamus learned to play the tin whistle and was on his way to becoming an accomplished multi-instrumentalist, singer and Irish dancer by 16. He has earned 23 All Ireland titles.
Michael grew up near Manchester, England surrounded by traditional Irish musicians. He started playing the tin whistle when he was seven, the Irish flute when he was 12 and in his teens, the bódhran drum and guitar. When he was 18, he moved to Ireland to pursue a degree in Traditional Irish Music and Dance at the University of Limerick. For the last 10 years, Michael has been on the road touring with various productions and bands.
Ciarán and Michael became friends while touring with Celtic Legends, an acclaimed Irish music and dance show. In 2019, Michael began working with HighTime on a temporary basis and then became a permanent member.
The three original members of HighTime performed individually and together with other bands and musical groups while entertaining audiences worldwide with music, song and dance steeped in Irish tradition. In 2017, HighTime was formed after it was decided it was high time for the group to establish their own band and record their own music. They released their debut album “Sunda” on March 10, 2018 and began touring in support of it.
This concert is BYOB with audience members encouraged to bring their favorite beverages and snacks. Admission is $20. For tickets and to reserve a table for free, call 570-724-6220 or visit deanecenter.com.