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Friendship Is Genuine Among Celtic Woman Members

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 11:57 pm    Post subject: Friendship Is Genuine Among Celtic Woman Members Reply with quote

Celtic Woman members are, left to right, Lisa Kelly, Lynn Hilary, Alex Sharpe, Máiréad Nesbitt and Chloë Agnew.

The music group Celtic Woman was created in 2004, about the same time as a popular television show that also featured five women, with plenty of media reports about backstage diva tactics.

There's no connection, longtime Celtic Woman member Lisa Kelly said.

"We were so unfortunate that was the same time as 'Desperate Housewives' came out, and every interview for years was like, 'C'mon, there's five women - there's bound to be killings backstage,' " she said in a telephone interview from Waukegan, Ill. "But, hand to my heart, there's never been a scrap backstage."

Kelly is one of three original members in the five-woman group, which returns Sunday night to the i wireless Center in Moline.

And count her as one who is most amazed by the group's success.

"When the idea was pitched to me, it was sold to me as a one-night gig, and that's why I accepted," she said. "Five years later, here we are still."

That concert was supposed to be a one-shot TV special for the Public Broadcasting System. But at the end of the week that it initially aired, the group's first album was atop the Billboard world music charts - and it stayed there for 2 1/2 years.

"You do these things not knowing how they will turn out," she said. "We were very fortunate that this show touched so many people in a very, very short amount of time."

There's genuine rapport and caring among Kelly and the four other women on stage, she said.

"You can't fake being friends," she said. "We're not that good of actresses."

That also comes into play when new members are brought into the group.

"It's not like we're very difficult to get along with, either," Kelly said. "We've always been very welcoming and fortunate that the people who replace other people have good work ethic."

Part of the key to the show's success, she said, is its variety and the promise to offer something for everyone from grandparents to grandchildren.

"Everybody takes something very different out of it," she said. "Everybody is unique within the show, and we're all from different musical backgrounds, so that separates all of us. But when we sing as an ensemble, it's great."

Kelly's background is in musical theater, including lead roles in "Chicago," "Chess," "Oklahoma" and "Grease."

The current tour, "Isle of Hope," includes a new song, "O, America!" that was written for Celtic Woman by Brendan Graham, the songwriter who also composed "You Raise Me Up," a standard for both Celtic Woman and singer Josh Groban.

"It's just amazing to watch the reaction of people when you sing a song about America," Kelly said of the new song. "We've had big biker dudes come to the show and you see them crying in the audience. It's an incredible feeling that, every night, without fail, I have goosebumps during that song."

Kelly toured with Riverdance for five years and has her three children - ages 7, 5 and 1 1/2 - in tow throughout this tour.

"It's mayhem, but they don't know any different," Kelly, 32, added. "It takes a lot of planning and a lot of good help, which I have."

David Burke
Posted: Thursday, October 8, 2009 2:00 am
Quad City Times
Davenport, IA
Always Remember All Things Are Possible With God !!
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