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The beautiful and brilliant sound of the Gaelic harp strung with gold, silver and brass is one that is not often heard in Ireland now, but Galway city and county will get that chance when Ann Heymann, doyenne of the Gaelic Harp, performs with her husband, Charlie Heymann, in Galway, Gort and

For Tuesday, December 1 at 7 pm in the Acoustic Room of Áras na Mac Léinn in NUI, Galway, Ann and Charlie Heymann (known as “Clairseach”) have prepared a fascinating concert of Irish music and poetry from the 10th century right up to the time of the last of the harpers, including, of course, Carolan. This
concert, hosted by An Cumann na Staire/The History Society, NUI Galway, is open to the public and is free.

On Friday, December 4 at 8 pm, Ann will perform her music for The Western Writers Centre - “Ionad Scribhneoirí Chaitlín Maude “- at Gort Public
Library, Gort, Co. Galway. The event is supported by Galway County Council and The Arts Council. She will be accompanied by her husband, Charlie, who is also a story-teller and musician. Admission is free. Details at and 087-2178138 (Fred Johnston)

On Sunday, December 6th at 8 pm Ann & Charlie visit Club na gCulture Vultures in Craughwell. This event also includes contributions from well-known Galway musician Kathleen Loughnane, who has recently launched a CD and book on the 16th century Connellan Brothers, and Úna Ní Fhlannagáin, a young neo-Irish harper. Admission is €10 and numbers are strictly limited. To check on availability ring 087-7529219.

Under the name “Clairseach” (Irish for “Gaelic harp”), Ann and Charlie perform a broad spectrum of repertoire, from traditional and historical to
Ann’s own compositions throughout the United States, Europe and Australia. Their collaboration extends to giving presentations on their research in
related areas such as Gaelic harp mythology and the performance of medieval bardic poetry. Ann inspires professionals and learners alike, and is frequently asked to lead workshops and masterclasses. Her definitive solo CD “Queen of Harps” documents the virtuosic capability of the Gaelic harp.
Current projects with her husband include investigating the symbiotic relationship between the harp and Gaelic bardic poetry; religious chant of the Celtic rite; medieval monophonic dance music; the presentation of Gaelic oral narrative poetry; the role of the clairseach in palliative care; and
completing their investigation into the metallurgy of historical clairseach stringing.

In addition to the concerts, Ann and Charlie will be giving a seminar in the Irish Studies Centre in NUI, Galway on Thursday, Dec 3 and a masterclass on Saturday, December 5. The masterclass is supported by The Historical Harp Society of Ireland and Galway Early Music (info and booking: 087 2820987).

Don’t miss this rare chance to experience the uniquely beautiful music of Ireland’s historical instrument performed by the woman who can be credited with rediscovering the secrets of the Gaeilic harp.

Further Information and images from: Maura Ó Cróinín, Galway Early
Music,, Tel: 087 930 5506

Permalink - Posted: November 25, 2009 at 3:10 pm