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Burger with Relish: Music

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 2:31 pm    Post subject: Burger with Relish: Music Reply with quote

From left to right are: Susan McFadden, Chloë Agnew, Máiréad Nesbitt and Lisa Lambe

A rainy day in Salt Lake City was reminiscent of the moors of Ireland, but Celtic Woman brought a ray of light, joy, and excitement to those at their Thursday show at Energy Solutions Arena.

As the lights of reds and blues glowed on the stage with flowing curtains, group members entered by coming down a center staircase with an decorative arch at the apex.

Chloë Agnew, one of the singers for the group, started out by welcoming and thanking the fans for the drizzling weather, which reminded her of home.

The crowd loved the stylings of violinist Máiréad Nesbitt as she ran swiftly around the stage while playing astoundingly complex, rapid solos while gracefully bouncing up and down a flight of metal stairs like a doe — while wearing four inch heels. It was almost unbelievable.

The four-person all-female Irish vocal group sang mostly new songs off their newest album called "Believe."

With three blondes and a red-head, all they were missing was a brunette.

They frequently changed up their look between songs wearing an array of extravagant dresses. There was ongoing interaction with the group's six back up singers, the Aontas Choir, and six other musicians with drums, bagpipes and guitars. Irish dancers also tapped their feet sharply on the floor in a battle of speed against violinst Máiréad.

The songs were at times soft and mellow, while others crescendoed with a violin solo and drum pounding that had the crowd of a couple thousand clapping and cheering along. The show wasn't sold out by any means, with many seats and a section in the lower bowl vacant, but those who attended seemed to enjoy the entertainment. Some even came dressed up in their best kilts and other impressions of Irish culture.

As the classy women took the stage for Act Two of the show, they came out spinning in circles and singing while wearing eye-grabbing gowns reminiscent of the middle ages. They also took time to stand in front of small blowing stage fans, which made them look tike they were in a music video as their hair blew as gracefully as they sang.

While they performed mostly classic Irish Tunes like “Danny Boy" and inspirational songs, such as “Amazing Grace,” they also sang a few Broadway songs.

The two Broadway tunes were from Les Miserables' “I Dreamed a Dream” and The Lion King's “Circle of Life” were melodic and powerful. However, a two song mash-up was simply sparse of additional songs and not doing justice to the title of the medley, called “A Tribute to Broadway.” It simply needed more songs.

The showmanship of the women was exceptional and their stage presence was balanced as they each took time to interact with the audience. During one famous Irish pub song, Chloë engaged the crowd — with a mix of ages young and mature — by having them singing along to “Green Grow the Rushes.”

Lisa Lambe and Susan McFadden made their first appearances in Utah as part of the U.S. Tour. McFadden is replacing former singer Lisa Kelly, on maternity leave. But you couldn’t tell the two were new to the show. There was magnetic chemistry and McFadden and Lambe held their own as they sang strong solos, reaching high octaves and carrying out the vibrato as they smoothly moved their arms to the tempo of the song and kept the fans engaged up to the very end.

"Believe" was an evening show to sit back and relax to soothing melodies coupled with voices as smooth and peaceful as a bird singing on a rainy day in Ireland.

Written By: Cimaron Neugebauer
The Salt Lake Tribune
Salt Lake City, Utah
Apr 20, 2012
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