Sunday, December 18, 2005

A Caprock Celtic Christmas


Last night, Angry Joyce and I attended 'A Caprock Celtic Christmas' at Texas Tech University. I had some trepidation as although I like listening to bagpipes and Irish jigs, I have always thought that there is something goofy about the whole RiverDance thing. All my apprehensions were dispelled as it was one of the best performances that I have ever attended. It wasn't quite Ozzfest but I had a great time.

The evening started out with a bagpipe player who entered the hall playing a medley of traditional Christmas songs and melded in traditional Celtic music and occasionally mixed in some other tunes to elicit humor, which of course since it was a Caprock Christmas included 'Dixie'.

The next performance by a female choir group was excellent and was backed up by the musical director on Renaissance guitar. The master of ceremonies or 'fear an ti, which translates as man of the house, welcomed the audience and told the story of how on the holidays a candle would be lit welcoming travelers and inviting all to a night of dancing, music, and merrymaking, which also meant a little bit of pulling off the jug.

The musicians for the traditional Irish music were phenominal. I was most impressed with the bodhrain. I was not familiar with this instrument. The way this percussion instrument was played not only framed the music with rhythm but at times to my untrained ear seemed as rolling thunder across the plains, with a sound both eery and beautiful.

When the part of the evening arrived that I had somewhat dreaded came, all my doubts were dispelled. Maybe it was the difference between seeing this dancing on t.v. or seeing it in person, all I know is that I was transfixed by it. The first dancing performance was a woman and her two daughters. The youngest of which could not have been more than four or five. Although this performance lacked the intensity of the dancing performances to come later with the mother by herself, it was thoroughly enjoyable and was just the ticket to start off. On a sidenote, I would be remiss in not saying that I looked forward to each subsequent performances due to the fact that her skirts got shorter and shorter each time she reentered the stage. I guess all that traditional dancing is good for the bod, for she had the best set of legs that I might have ever seen.

After a short intermission, The West Texas Childrens Choir performed a few selections and I must say they were leaps and bounds better than the Chistmas Concert for the Damned that I attended earlier in the week. A group of mummers acted out a play and more traditional Celtic music was played. The finale was awe inspiring with 'Amazing Grace' played on the bagpipe backed up by both choirs.

I was glad that I attended and next year plan to take the kids with us. In fact this summer we might try to attend a Celtic Festival that is held in Amarillo each year. If anyone has a chance to attend one of these types of events, I would strongly encourage them to attend. If an uncouth redneck such as myself can have a good time, there is no telling how good a time can be had by a person with just a smidgin of culture.

12 comments:

Reiki said...

:PFuzz, I just wanted to compliment you on your writing. I have been reading your blog for several months and have noticed you finding and improving your writing style, or perhaps you have just started plagarizing. ;-) See, you can teach and old Fuxx new tricks. Well done, sir.

Naiad said...

i liked this post too. i have to say, it was kind of unexpected. ;)

Laurie said...

That sounds awesome!

Funny, I just bought a Celtic Christmas music CD this weekend when I was out shopping. I love Celtic music :-)

:P fuzzbox said...

dear jane: Thanks so much for the compliment. When I first started this blog, it had been awhile since I had written anything other than simple Notices at work. I guess it has taken some time to find my voice. It's either that or you are getting accustomed to my unusual writing patterns. If so you might want to get that checked out.

naiad: Thank you, the unexpected is my bread and butter.

laurie: It was awesome and now I am a big fan of this type of music.

Big D said...

Cool, Time for that irish whiskey tasting contest i was telling you about. I think the contest envolves not falling off your chair. It's very tricky!

Ann Alsex said...

I just luuv a man in a kilt. Easy Access :D LOL!!!

:P fuzzbox said...

big d: As long as we can play along with a few Irish Drinking songs.

ann: I don't know about kilts this time of the year. Haven't you heard about shrinkage?

David Amulet said...

A very unusual picture for you, eh?

Maybe next year Ozzy will show up and you can have your service and Ozzfest, too ...

-- david

The Phoenix said...

I have a Celtic christmas CD too, although a few of the songs are really depressing.

Nothing like getting in touch with the whole Winter Solstace aspect of the Christmas season!

I've never seen any sort of Irish dancing either, as I thought the whole thing was really lame. Maybe one day, I will be tricked into seeing a show.

:P fuzzbox said...

david: Bit of a stretch huh. It is a wonder the server did not get knocked down from the Wrath of the Almighty.

phoenix: If you ever get roped in to going, I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did.

Anonymous said...

I just came across your site while I was looking up an article on the Celtic Christmas at Tech. I am the Irish dancer (the Mom) that was performing that night. I'm really glad you enjoyed the dancing and didn't find it lame after all! BTW, for anyone interested, there are sessions every Friday night down at O'Reilly's Pub that include many of the musicians from the show. And, there will also be a Summer Solstice show with music and dance. Thanks again for coming and actually liking it!

-Kathleen

Anonymous said...

Heh...lucky you...

I'm the Irish dancer's husband (married to the "mom," that is). And yeah, you don't get any luckier than me. That seemingly 20-year-old dancer has six kids, too, and has been on stage for ballet, jazz, and modern regularly, too. So much talent it leaves me stupid (not that it takes much). And still the best-looking woman at the pool.

Incidentally, we both used to do Scottish dance, and yeah, I have a kilt. Nothing like 6-3 and 250 in a MacDonald hunting tartan. You gotta have attitude to wear _that_ to Burger King after the show, believe me. (Or at least I think it would have helped if I had. ;-))