Music on a Grand Scale

Music on a Grand Scale

University to welcome two legends of Irish music next week

Two prominent musician-scholars who have contributed to Boston College's efforts in preserving traditional Irish music will present concerts during the coming week.

This Sunday, March 16, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Mick Moloney will present "Songs and Music of the Nation" at 2 p.m. in Gasson 100. Fiddle player Dana Lyn will accompany Moloney, and the concert also will feature a surprise guest and traditional Irish dancing.

Mick Moloney (left) will present "Songs and Music of the Nation" this Sunday, while Michael Ó Súilleabháin, a former visiting faculty member who helped initiate BC's efforts in Irish music, performs next Friday.
On Friday, March 21, keyboardist and composer Michael Ó Súilleabháin, a prime architect of BC's Irish and Gaelic music endeavors, will perform at 7 p.m. in Gasson 100. He will be joined by Irish Music Programs Director Seamus Connolly and Irish Studies music students.

Ó Súilleabháin came to BC as a visiting scholar in 1990 and helped to lay the groundwork for several hallmarks of the University's Irish music programs and resources, including the Irish Music Archives and the Gaelic Roots music, song and dance festival. Among the musical performers he invited to campus was Connolly, who since joining the Irish Studies Program has developed and expanded many of the initiatives started by Ó Súilleabháin.

The director of the Irish World Music Centre at the University of Limerick, Ó Súilleabháin has developed a musical style that incorporates classical, jazz and other influences with Irish music. He has recorded several albums and produced and performed on many others, and also has helped to create television specials spotlighting Irish music.

Moloney, a faculty member of the Villanova University Irish Studies Program, has visited BC frequently and taught at last year's Gaelic Roots festival. A well-regarded singer, he also is accomplished on guitar, tenor banjo, mandolin and bouzouki, and has numerous recordings to his credit.

In recent years, Moloney has firmly established a solid reputation as a folklorist and musicologist, having published Far from the Shamrock Shore: The Story of Irish American History Through Song. He also has amassed a considerable collection of recordings, books, manuscripts and other materials relating to Irish music.

"It's an honor and delight for us to host these two giants of Irish music," said Connolly. "Michael has been a great friend of BC, and we are happy to have him back here. He had the foresight to see how Boston College would be perfect as a locus for Irish music, and that vision has taken hold.

"Mick is arguably the most influential Irish musician living in the United States, and he shares his knowledge in a way that is informative and entertaining. His commitment to Irish music is reflected by the dedication he's shown in putting together his collection - which perhaps some day might find a home here at BC."

The donation for both events is $10 apiece. For more information on the concerts, call ext.2-8100.

-Sean Smith


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