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May 2019
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2004-09-23 Soaring Eagle Casino

reviewed by Maryann


The concert was so wonderful!! I was so sad when it was over....! Now I have to wait a whole five days to see The Celtic Tenors again!! Despair....!! Unwillingness to carry on with regular life now....!!


Shall I begin.... The Celtic Tenors came walking on from the darkened stage and sang "Grenada." It is a beautiful song, and their beautiful voices were weaving in and out as only they can do. They introduced themselves (and Mr. Nelson said he is really from Mt. Pleasant, which, I am sorry to say, a number of people in the crowd went away believing).


I wrote these songs down (very poorly scribbling them, in the darkness), because it is impossible to remember all of their songs because their beautiful spell comes over you and you are lost in another world for the whole time and later when you wake up to reality you can't get back there. They sang a number of my favorite songs including Calendonia, Spanish Lady, Mari's Wedding, and the Wild Rover, and I wished the audience would have done a better job of clapping along because I think they were wondering why nobody was clapping along. Anyway, they gave a stern lecture on the subject of clapping along in future, and everyone promised to behave.


They sang "Mary of Dungloe," which was so beautiful. They wove their beautiful harmonies around that song and I would have loved to hear it 50 more times in a row. They made it so sad and beautiful.


They did Fionnahula with a brief explanation to the crowd of what they were singing, and I think everyone really liked it. They had added even more complicated psuedo-words to it from the version I am used to and sang it faster. Deirdre came out looking beautiful in a sort of traditional and crocheted dress, and sang "I Dream I Dwelt in Marble Halls" at which my dad poked me in the back and said it was a very old song, that he remembered from a long time ago; and she sang "Song for Ireland" and my father said he wanted to jump up and yell "Erin Go Bragh!" Those were really beautiful songs and everyone liked them a lot.


Then the Tenors did "The Star of the County Down" with a reprisal of poorly attempted clapping from the audience, although a little better effort was made this time, and "The Town I Loved So Well." "The Star of the County Down" was adorable as always and "The Town I Loved so Well," is one of my favorite songs, and I loved hearing it live, and would like to hear it 50 more times in a row.


They sang "Danny Boy" and the crowd started clapping immediately. I think it is a favorite song for many people and their rendition of it is the best ever. That was followed by "Recurdame" which was beautiful live, probably better than on the tape if that is possible, and then they warned everyone not to leave because there was more following the interval (good idea, with that crowd).


In the second half, they sang "So Strong" which was wonderful to hear live, and "A Love so Beautiful," which really impressed the audience when they said they had a song by Roy Orbison. (As they say in books, a murmur of approbation ran around the crowd, which is what happens in Ireland when they say they have a song by Phil Coulter.)


Mr. Morris sang "Love of my Life," which is beautiful to hear live and like all the familiar songs, just slightly different than what you heard before in small but noticeable ways. Everyone really liked it.


Then came the hysterical O Solo Mio, which everyone was laughing at. They sang "Nella Fantasia" next, with Deirdre, and it was beautiful too. I really love that song and I did think of Mr. John Harding when they did that one (per his request!), followed by another Italian song that I don't know the name of but I have heard it before.


Mr. Gilsenan sang "The Contender," and it was as always beautiful to hear no matter how many times you have heard it, and I think the crowd really liked it.


Then came "The Fields of Athenry," which was my very most favorite song of the concert, even more sad and beautiful than "Mary of Dungloe." They really filled that song out with their beautiful lyrical quality of singing that I can only poorly describe, but we all know what I mean. I would like to hear that one 100 times in a row.


After that, they picked it back up with "Whiskey in the Jar" and more appallingly bad clapping from the audience, and sadly after that it was "Time to Say Goodbye."


To sum up, they did many of their familiar songs and I think that was to get this new audience acquainted with them. I loved hearing them all because I can never get tired of them, and they are always slightly different and even more beautiful when sung live.


The time goes by too fast and they pack up their spell and take it back to Ireland or, in this case, to Chicago.


Post Script: They didn't have as many people at their meet & greet, which I would like to say is because many people were there with tour groups and had to leave on out of there, but of course their most psychoticly devoted fan (me) stayed around to try to take a picture of them. They were nice enough to hold up the line and take a picture with me, which I hope it comes out, although I really did not need to ugly up their picture with me in it. Since I am a slack-jawed yokel, at that point it all went to my head and I forget to get autographs for anyone else which I was intending on doing (Kathy, I am looking in your direction) so maybe I will have my head on straight in Oakville.) The Celtic Tenors wore dark suits in the first half and light suits in the second half. They looked fabulous of course, and they seemed to be having a good time or else pretending really well to be having a good time, so I hope they enjoyed our fair State and come back many a time, cuz we miss them!