The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

We Were All Irish for One Night

By Virginia Ross - For The Quill

A happy, expectant crowd arrived February 13th at Burlington's Memorial Auditorium knowing that the evening would be long remembered.

In fact, most of the floor seats were filled as well as a goodly number in the surrounding areas both up and down. As a friend remarked, "Men voices are so clear and I know this will be a great show."

The Five Irish Tenors on their first American tour, David Martin, Morgan Crowley, Ciaran Kelly, Alan Leech and George Hutton, accompanied by Feargal Murray and Danny Forde, pianists, were a spectacular hit. The interplay of voices powerfully resonated throughout the building and whether a song was soulful, heart wrenching or a lively Irish ditty, the audience responded enthusiastically.

An old favorite "The Wearing of the Green" had the audience clapping and hooting; the group knew they were facing a friendly crowd.

When they sang the song Bing Crosby made famous in Going My Way, "Toora-Loora-Lorra," (an Irish lullaby), they invited all to sing along and they did with gusto.

Included in the program, were "La Paloma" and "Spanish Lady," Spanish songs which gave the tenors a chance to clown around as well as present a rollicking melody.

Several selections dealt with the troubles with Britain such as "The Foggy Dew," which told of the 1916 Easter rising that led to the Republic of Ireland "Boolabogue," which memorialized the 18th century rebellion led by Father Murphy and "The Town I Loved So Well ," which spoke of the troubles in Northern Ireland. Such passionate numbers stirred the listeners' hearts.

We all were awaiting the ending song, "Danny Boy," a Mother's lament as her son goes off to war. This haunting melody so familiar and so beloved was appreciated with thunderous, standing applause. I know everyone there felt they had received their money's worth.

Mark your calendar for March 30th when the Chicago Harp Quartet will be on stage. Individual concert tickets are available that evening.