August 23, 2019
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Bangor Celtic Crossroads Festival to include music, dancing demonstrations and genealogy workshop

Community Author: Pauleena MacDougall
Post Date:

BANGOR — The 2018 Bangor Celtic Crossroads Festival will be held Sept. 27-30 and recognizes the music, dance and food from Celtic countries. The festival includes a Family Fairy and Pirate Parade, concerts, genealogy workshops, a celebration of Celtic literature, and an Irish step dancing demonstration.

Tickets to all events can be purchased online at



All-Festival concert tickets $65, Thursday and Friday $20 each, Saturday, $35. Tickets: Held at the Bangor Arts Exchange, 193 Exchange St. 

Thursday Sept. 27:

5:30 p.m. Gala Opening, Bangor Arts Exchange, 193 Exchange St.

Join us for Celtic themed refreshments at the festival opening Gala.

7 p.m. Concert with Ímar, $20: At the Gala, hear an all-star band of the new generation. Ímar includes Mohsen Amini (Talisk) on concertina, Tomás Callister (MecLir) on fiddle, Ryan Murphy (Mànran) on pipes and flutes, Adam Rhodes (Barrule) on bouzouki, and guitar/bodhran guru Adam Brown (Rura).


Friday, Sept.  28:

starting at 6:30 p.m. Concert with Gus La Casse and Peter Lindquist, $20: Hear hard driving Cape Breton and Acadian fiddle traditions with Peter Lindquist on guitar.

and Chris Brinn and Baron Collins-Hill: Chris came to the U. S. from the North Cornish coast. Chris plays piano accordion, specializing in Irish music and songs. Baron plays and teaches mandolin, tenor guitar, six string guitar, tenor banjo, and bouzouki. Chris and Baron will perform lively Irish tunes and songs.


Saturday Sept. 29:

starting at 5 p.m. Gabriel Donohue and Deb Shebish Concert, $35: Gabriel is an Irish born multi-instrumentalist based in Philadelphia who toured for 3 years with the Chieftains, and has recorded with many Irish greats. He performed with Michael Flatley at the National Heritage Awards in Washington, D.C. and Eileen Ivers at the Clinton White House. Deb has contributed to two Greentrax Scottish Traditions CD’s: “Orkney: Land Sea” and “Community and Chokit On A Tattie”.

and Ian MacDougall, Cape Breton Scottish fiddle tunes: Ian has two albums to his credit, “From Foot Cape” and “Before You Arrived.” Ian MacDougall is now considered one of Cape Breton’s best traditional fiddlers.


Sunday Sept. 30:

beginning at 2 p.m. Irish Session at Mason’s Brewing Company, 15 Hardy St., Brewer and Concert:  The Spain brothers are second generation Irish-American singer / songwriters from Manchester, NH.



Saturday workshops $10 each. Held at the Bangor Arts Exchange, 193 Exchange St. 

Saturday, Sept. 29

1-2 p.m. Gallery. Beginning Irish Whistle workshop Chuck Whitney and Cathy King Segee:  This workshop will introduce new players to whistle techniques and perhaps learn a simple tune or two. We will use tin/penny whistles in the key of D, the commonly used whistle in Irish music. Previous playing experience is not a prerequisite.  We will attempt to accommodate various ability levels. Whistles will be available for loan/purchase for those who don’t already have one. (10$ to purchase).

Chuck makes, plays and teaches Irish whistle, flute and Uilleann pipes. He leads Irish sessions in Bangor and lives in Ellsworth, Maine. Cathy Segee is an Irish flute and whistle player who plays in sessions various places around the Bangor area including Paddys Murphy’s, Geaghan’s and Mason’s Brewery. She is also a musician with the Celtic group Doollaly.

1-2 p.m Ballroom. Beginning Cape Breton step dance with Angela Szucs:

In Cape Breton. dance came with the music from the “old country” when the settlers from Scotland, Ireland and France settled on the great Island at the northern end of Nova Scotia. Over the centuries, a distinctive dance style was established that is related to the styles of their ancestors, but is clearly different. In this workshop, students will be introduced to some basic strathspey and reel steps that can be combined into a complete performance in the Cape Breton style. Students are encouraged to wear leather or hard soled shoes or tap shoes, if they have them.

Angela Szucs has been studying Cape Breton style step dancing for a number of years and has studied at the St. Ann’s Gaelic College in Cape Breton.

2-3 p.m. Gallery. Song migration: From Scotland and Ireland to North America with Sara Grey:

Scots and Ulster Scots have immigrated to North America in great numbers, bringing with them the song and ballad singing traditions of Scotland and Northern Ireland. We will trace the migration of songs by singing a song, or part of it, from its Celtic source and then singing the American or Canadian version illustrating both changes and similarities. Participants will be encouraged to ask questions, and to sing along on choruses and refrains. Sara is a traditional musician who grew up in New Hampshire but lived in Scotland and England for 46 years.

3-4 p.m. Gallery. Music of Cornwall with Chris Brinn:

Cornwall boasts a rich music and dance heritage. The Cornish have a passion for communal singing, whether part of a male voice choirs, pilot gig crews, or in the bar of the local pub. Chris Brinn will explore some of the more popular songs from his home town of Padstow, as well as some of the dance tunes from the lesser known Celtic stronghold of Kernow.

Chris Brinn came to the U.S. almost eighteen years ago from the small fishing port of Padstow on the North Cornish coast, in the South West of Great Britain. He now lives in Searsmont with his wife Carol and their son Declan.

3-4 p.m. Ballroom. The Sword Dance (Scottish Highland dance) with Emily Kirkton: 

Modern Scottish Highland Dance is based on centuries-old traditions, the oldest of which is the Sword Dance. Highland dance at a competitive level is a highly technical and athletic form of dance.  In this workshop, participants will learn the fundamental steps that make up the dance.  Participants can dance as much or as little as they would like, and no special equipment or materials are needed.

Emily Kirkton, has been involved in Scottish Highland Dance for over 30 years and runs the dance competition at the annual Maine Highland Games.

4-5 p.m. Gallery. Maine and the Celtic World: In the Tradition with Dick Swain and Nancy Mattila: 

From ballads to shanties including sea, lumbering and love songs, this workshop will cover traditional songs and songs in traditional style from Maine and from the Celtic World.  Nancy and Dick’s performances include materials gathered from research into the history and folklore of North America and the Anglo/Irish/Scottish tradition.



Free and open to the public: Held at Bangor Public Library, 145 Harlow St. 

Saturday, Sept. 29

10 a.m. Family Fairy and Pirate Parade: Families will meet at the UMaine Art Museum to make drums, fairy wands and pirate flags and then parade from the Hannibal Hamlin Park to the Bangor Public Library Children’s room for snacks and stories.

10-4 p.m. Genealogy Workshops:  At 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. join our head of Local History, Betsy Paradis at the Bangor Public Library for this demonstration and workshop on Irish Genealogy. She’ll walk you through using so you can learn about your own ancestors.

12-1 p.m. Atrium patio: Highland Piping Demonstration

1-2:30 p.m. Conference Room. Literary Crossroads: Hermon High School students will read from Scottish, Irish and Welsh literature and poems. Following the readings, Kathleen Toole will lead a discussion with the audience about the connections between Celtic folklore and the literature presented.

2:30-3:30 p.m. Conference Room. Irish Dance Demonstration: Dancers Angeli Perrow and Angeli Szucs will demonstrate the basic Irish steps that make up the reels, jigs, slip jigs and hornpipes of Irish dance.