Normally, the Echoes of Erin Concert only comes to Canada every other year, and their next tour will be in 2014.
Here are some clips that showcase the talent of the musicians:
•Jason McGuiness (fiddle): http://comhaltas.ie/music/detail/comhaltaslive_372_5_jason_mcguiness
•Bairbre Uí Theighneáin and Mícheál O’Shea (singing): http://comhaltas.ie/music/detail/comhaltaslive_372_9_bairbre_ui_theighneain_and_micheal_oshea
•Matthew Dean (flute and whistle): http://comhaltas.ie/music/detail/comhaltaslive_372_7_matthew_dean
•Caoimhe Kearns (lilting): http://comhaltas.ie/music/detail/comhaltaslive_372_6_caoimhe_kearns
•Christopher Maguire (accordion) and Aoife Ní Argáin (harp): http://comhaltas.ie/music/detail/comhaltaslive_372_8_christopher_maguire
•Mairéad Corridan (concertina): http://comhaltas.ie/music/detail/comhaltaslive_372_2_mairead_corridan
After the concert, the performers mingled with those in the audience that remained and played their instruments with those concert-goers glad enough to bring their own. Tunes were exchanged and some trading of dance steps happened. Free tea, cheese, crackers and fruit were on hand up to 12:30 in the morning when the festivities finally came to an end.
Here are some of the thank you notes sent by the performers:
Hope you are all recovered and well after all your hard work with organising the Tour etc. I know you put immense work into arranging the Concert Tour to Ottawa I just want to say a sincere thank you to you especially and all the committee etc., who worked along with you for all your wonderful work in making arrangements for the Tour. You really put on a fantastic reception for us and you had all preparations well in place so that everything went so smoothly on the night. We have been left with such fantastic, unforgettable memories of a beautiful place around Ottawa.
Our Tour was a fantastic success ...Canada has set the bar very high now...which is tribute to all of you and the local committee for all your hard work. The group still talk about the audience response to them on the night of the concert and regard it as one of the best.
Can you say a big thank you to all the host families, and all the lovely people we met, on behalf of the entire group, their hospitality and care for all was greatly appreciated by all and still remembered fondly.
Eddie Murphy (Concert Tour Manager)
This is just a few lines to express my gratitude for the wonderful welcome we received in Ottawa on our recent Echoes of Erin Tour of Canada. I have to congratulate you on a well organised concert and a lovely warm audience!! I was amazed and delighted at the number of people who were able to speak Irish fluently to me - I do believe that I never met as many Irish speakers at one concert in all our travels!!! I particularly liked your welcome notice at the door and believe that many branches around Ireland could take a leaf from your book!! Karen Tracey and I stayed with M. Maher and I can only say that I have never met such an inspirational person! She was kindness itself and looked after us like we were her own children - we really felt at home!
Le gach dea-mhéin,
Bairbre Uí Theighneáin (Singer)
I think I'm finally recovered from the Comhaltas tour now and back to the hard work in University.
I wanted to send you a quick e-mail to thank you for all your hospitality while I stayed with you in Ottawa. It was a wonderful experienced and very interesting talking to you about your own experiences of traditional music and the many musicians you have entertained in your home.
Thank you as well for the lovely CD's you gave me, they have found a nice spot in my iTunes and are played regularly on my iPod.
Best of luck for the future and I hope I'll be able to meet you again someday.
Micheál O'Shea (Singer, Sean-nós dancer)