Virtual Concert Celebration for St. Brigid’s Day February 1

Community News |Jan 26, 2021|6 min read

The Association of Irish and Celtic Festivals (AICF) is proud to be hosting A Celebration of St. Brigid,
with generous support from the Embassy of Ireland, celebrating an Irish saint, and Celtic goddess,
with music from a mix of celebrated female Irish musicians.

St. Brigid is one of Ireland’s patron saints, although not quite as famous as her male counterpart, St.
Patrick, but has legends and tales all her own. The AICF, which is dedicated to bringing the Irish
culture to the United States via Irish and Celtic Festivals, wanted to celebrate her importance and
bring her holiday, February 1 st , to the forefront.

Erin O’Rourke, from Indy Irish Fest, and one of the executive board members for the AICF
organization, said, “After our success with our Irish Christmas Concert, and reaching new audiences
through our programming, we wanted to continue our mission of education, and what better way
than through St. Brigid’s Day, and a celebration of the female spirit. We hope that by highlighting this
Irish patron saint and her holiday and stories, we can entertain and educate audiences with a
program that celebrates her, and some of the best female Irish musicians and dancers across the

This event would not also be possible without the generous support of the Embassy of Ireland, and
their continued support of the AICF mission of bringing the Irish culture, via music, education, food
and dance, to those not in Ireland in the hopes that those traditions are never lost.
Emer Rocke, Ireland’s Deputy Ambassador to the United States, had this to say about St. Brigid:
‘‘From Annie Moore to Mother Jones, Georgia O’Keefe to Maureen O’Hara, Irish women and their
daughters have blazed a trail across every sphere of American life. In the week this country’s first
woman Vice President took office, I’m delighted to join friends at the AICF in announcing this
celebration of remarkable women artists. Rooted in the Celtic festival of Imbolc, Brigid’s day has a
history every bit as storied and significant as St Patrick’s. And, in the years ahead, our Embassy team
and seven Consulates – four of which are led by female diplomats – are determined it should be just
as widely celebrated.’’

Taking place on February 1 at 8:00 p.m. EST, the AICF will be showcasing eight acts from all over the
world, highlighting some of the best female Irish music and dance performers. From established acts
to up and coming groups, this all-female celebration highlights an important piece of Celtic culture.

Co-hosts for the event are Eileen Ivers , who will also perform, a Grammy awarded, Emmy nominated,
fiddler, and an Irish American to boot. She has established herself as the pre-eminent exponent of the
Irish fiddle in the world today, and said this regarding this event: “St. Brigid was a light in the darkest
of times, a peacemaker, a woman who provided sustenance and a safe haven for all. I’m thrilled to
be joining other female artists as part of a livestream concert honoring this beloved Irish saint. May
the perpetual flame that St. Brigid ignited so long ago, which still burns in Kildare Town’s Market
Square today, live in our hearts and shine through the gift of music and community.”
Eileen will be joined by Joanie Madden, who is considered one of the greatest musicians and
personalities in the history of Irish music in America, and since its inception in 1985, has also been the
leader and driving force behind the all-female Irish music and dance troupe, Cherish the Ladies.
Additional performers include:

Morgan Bullock , an Irish dancer from Virginia, who gained fame last year from her fabulous TikTok
videos, mixing hip hop with step dancing. 10 years in, she’s competed internationally, and has been
offered a chance to dance with Riverdance after the pandemic has subsided.

Karan Casey , who has long been one of the most innovative, provocative and imitated voices in Irish
traditional and folk music. Her career has spanned twenty-five years from the early days as a jazz
performer in George’s Bistro in Dublin to her heady days in New York with the band Solas to her now
well-established solo career and she has sold over half a million albums.

Cherish the Ladies , the long-running, Grammy-nominated, Irish-American super group that formed in
New York City in 1985 to celebrate the rise of women in what had been a male-dominated Irish music
scene and has since toured the world. These ladies create an evening that includes a spectacular
blend of virtuoso instrumental talents, beautiful vocals, captivating arrangements, and stunning step
dancing. Their continued success as one of the top Celtic groups in the world is due to their ability to
take the best of Irish traditional music and dance and put it forth in an immensely entertaining show.
Ashley Davis , who is an American singer-songwriter whose musical imagination invites the world into
her eclectic sphere. Think Joni Mitchell meets contemporary Celtic and you’ll get something like the
creative force of Ashley Davis- while this mash-up may classify her work, Davis’s unique ability to
capture and cross musical traditions ultimately transcends comparison.
The Friel Sisters , who hail from Glasgow , with their family roots firmly entrenched in the Donegal
Gaeltacht (Derrynamansher), achieve a close blend on fiddle, flute and uilleann pipes interspersed
with songs sang in unison, many from their family and local repertoire. Since the launch of their
debut album, they have performed in various venues and festivals across Europe, America and Asia
and have appeared as guests on stage or toured with many internationally known Irish acts.

Emma Langford , A daughter of Limerick, songwriter and performing artist Emma Langford has won
accolades, awards and critical acclaim from County Mayo to Milwaukee. Lingering in that liminal
space between folk, jazz and traditional Irish nuance, Langford has drawn comparisons to Joni
Mitchell, Nick Drake and Janis Ian. Her stage presence and voice however are truly uniquely her own –
a mesmerizing blend, best experienced live.

Cassie and Maggie MacDonald , Nova Scotian sisters who put their own 21st Century stamp on the
Celtic soundtrack of this nation. Exciting and innovative, their talent is surpassed only by the sheer joy
they exude in performance. Alternating between Gaelic and English, traditional and contemporary,
haunting and electrifying, the duo is nothing short of mesmerizing. The two have been enchanting
audiences around the world with their unparalleled unity of strings, voices and fabulous percussive
step dance.

For more information about this event, or for festivals interested in joining the AICF, please visit