June 22, 1998 |
So here's your man, David Wheatley, reciting a bit o' poetry for the pub crowd, his left hand stuck in a dark suit pocket, his right clutching a sheaf of white papers. A nearby mirror embossed with "Harp Lager" bounces his reflection back into a packed room wrapped in whispers and a mist of cigarette smoke. "Which lasts longer, poetry or drink? What's a poem, if not a message in a bottle?"
May 7, 1998 |
When you listen to that haunting, mournful opening melody on the "Titanic" soundtrack, you probably don't know you're hearing the uilleann pipes (pronounced IL-lin and also known as the Irish pipes). They are played by Eric Rigler and were recorded at Todd AO in Studio City. "I began playing the Great Highland Bagpipe when I was 7 but became interested at 2 because I listened to my British-born father's bagpipe records," said Los Angeles resident Rigler, whose mother is part Irish.
March 12, 1998 |
Forget "Riverdance"--the lords and ladies of Irish dance can be found right here in Southern California. Every day or night, in church halls, school rooms and studios, children and adults gather to rehearse intricate dance movements or perform at local competitions called feises (pronounced "feshes"). Irish dancing is both social fun and a strict discipline--it's an art form rooted in traditional music, complicated footwork and colorful costumes that reflect the rich history of the Emerald Isle.
March 12, 1998
Most teachers charge about $25 to $40 a month for weekly classes. Additional costs can include shoes, costumes and travel to and from competitions. For information about Irish dance and local teachers, visit this Web site: http://tigger.cc.uic.edu/~aerobin/dance.html Following is a list of some Irish dance teachers in the L.A. area accredited by the Irish Dancing Commission (students of teachers who are not accredited cannot participate in dance competitions).
November 13, 1997 |
Surely our calendars have gone haywire, and it's St. Patrick, not St. Nick, whose holiday is just around the corner. What else could explain the flood of Irish music and dance pouring through the area this month?
March 26, 1997 |
In 1991, Michael Flatley was living in a modest apartment in Beverly Hills and touring as a featured dancer (and flutist) with the famed Irish musical group the Chieftains. It was a nice enough life for an Irish American folk dance champion but hardly the stuff of massive mainstream success. Yet, just a week and a half ago, on St. Patrick's Day, there Flatley was, on stage at Radio City Music Hall, preening and strutting like a rock star while 6,000 rabid fans roared his name.
July 14, 1996 |
Spiritually, if not geographically, San Pedro in July is just about as far from the green hills of Ireland as you can get. The sun-blasted freeway dumps you at a harbor hemmed in by spires and spans and industrial haze. Yes, there are boats and water, which, one could argue, are also found nestled against the Emerald Isle, but most of these boats are moored by cell-phone-wielding landlubbers trying to escape the heat of Torrance (or maybe just Torrance), and the water, well, why get into that?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 1996
Ireland never has been famous for its food, but things may be changing. Some Irish food is taking on a European flair--partly because more Irish citizens are traveling to Europe and bringing culinary influences home. Nowadays, for example, potatoes often are replaced with pasta--rarely eaten in Ireland years ago.
March 11, 1996 |
Donegal has been called Ireland's forgotten county, and considering its spot on the map it's not a surprising appellation. Facing the sea on the west and north, pressed against troubled Northern Ireland on the east, its only physical connection to the rest of the Republic of Ireland is its 10-mile border with County Sligo to the south. County Donegal, a dramatic land of mountains, river valleys and rugged shore, has produced a music that might also be called forgotten.
February 24, 1996 |
Some purists cry foul when such bands as the Pogues and Young Dubliners bend the boundaries of Irish music with such noisy, modern-era instruments as the electric guitar, bass and keyboards. The members of Craob Rua, a quartet from Belfast (pronounced Creev-roo-ah), would seem to be good boyos, rooting their jigs and reels firmly in the traditional style of the Chieftains.