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Celtic Woman Adds Sharpe Voice

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 8:35 pm    Post subject: Celtic Woman Adds Sharpe Voice Reply with quote

Alex Sharpe
Celtic Woman

Alex Sharpe seems quite comfortable leaving a familiar life on the musical stage for life on the road for 69 shows over three months in a foreign land.

She is the newest member of Celtic Woman, the popular Irish vocal quintet.

"It was good training ground," she says with a laugh about her work in theater.

The singers, backup voices and orchestra with leader David Downes will be here for their fourth visit Monday.

The show has been growing in popularity here the same way the tour has been across the United States. The first tour in 2005 touched 16 cities, increasing to 50 shows the next year, 68 in 2007 and 69 this year.

In Pittsburgh, it has moved from the Byham Theater, Downtown, in 2005, to the nearby Benedum Center, where it played two nights in 2007, and now to the Mellon Arena, Uptown.

"We do a lot of sport arenas," Sharpe says of the group that was put together for a TV special in 2004. "It's nice to see the show do that well."

The St. Patrick's Day show here follows a weekend at the usual mid-March stop at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, where this year the band will perform Saturday and Sunday.

Although the show has been growing in popularity each year and has developed a distinct sound, Sharpe says the singers still have artistic freedom.

"We are encouraged to bring our own style to the show," Sharpe says. "And we each have our own style."

The schedule is busy, but doing eight shows a week is rather ordinary for Sharpe, who was working on the musical theater stage in Dublin when Downes came to call.

He needed a replacement for Lisa Kelly, who gave birth to a daughter last week, and seemed to think Sharpe would fit in well.

She is joining original members Chloe Agnew and Orla Fallon; Mairead Nesbitt, the famously flitting fiddler; and Lynn Hillary, who is replacing Meav Ni Mhaolchatha, while Mhaolchatha pursues a solo career.

There is a theatrical element to the show that would seem to fit Sharpe's work onstage. Although Celtic Woman concerts don't have a plot line, the singers and musical director Downes have a sense for presenting song.

Numbers such as the familiar and rhythmically bounding "Orinoco Flow" will work their way into the concert easily, but never get in the way of the powerful "You Raise Me Up," which the singers can use to bring the concert to an overwhelming conclusion.

"Every song has a story, and we try to tell that," she says.

Each performer gets her own solo numbers, and Sharpe's will include "Caledonia" and "The Blessing."

The concert, "A New Journey," is the same as the 2007 show, with Celtic folk songs, pop numbers they have made famous and non-Gaelic songs such as "Shenandoah" and "Beyond the Sea."

"People will get what they expect to hear," she says, explaining that the concert doesn't change as the tour progresses.

Celtic Woman

When: 7:30 p.m. Monday

Admission: $45.50 and $65.50

Where: Mellon Arena, Uptown

Details: 412-323-1919

By Bob Karlovits
Thursday, March 13, 2008[/img]
Always Remember All Things Are Possible With God !!

Last edited by Don on Sun Oct 12, 2008 12:50 am; edited 1 time in total
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Joined: 08 Jun 2007
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Location: South Carolina

PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2008 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems to me she is enjoying herself. That is a good thing to hear.
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