Celtic News May 2017

It’s all over for another year! I’m not sure if I’m relieved or sad, but I do know that I’m tired. I’m sure that all the wonderful workers and Committee members for both the Australian Celtic Festival and The Australian Celtic Music Awards are more tired.
Once again I didn’t actually make it up to “the hill” but I’ve spoken to so many who did. It seems to have been a raging success there, with massive attendance during the day and two huge concerts on Friday and Saturday nights. 
I attended the 100,000 Welcomes concert on Thursday night. This event has grown hugely over the last few years. 260 people were treated to a fantastic show with performances from Clan Celtica, Norma O’Hara Murphy, Cape Byron Celtic Dance who joined forces with Draíocht to present a great dance exhibition, and of course The String Family. I must say that I love being an audience member rather than an organiser. No stress – just pure enjoyment.
Friday night saw Murphy’s Pigs at Glen Innes Services Club for the now traditional free concert. It was great to catch up with lots of people who come to this concert every year and who tend to say “see you next year” as they are leaving.
On Saturday night, we went to the Official Celtic Awards Night. This is always fun and so satisfying to see that quality Celtic music continues to grow in strength. There’s a report later in this newsletter about all the Winners.
On Sunday night, we “wound down” at dinner at the Hereford Steakhouse with entertainment by Wright and McKay. This duo is just fantastic! I love the sound of the cello, which Rebecca plays beautifully. Donald and Rebecca’s vocal harmonies are really great too.
Unfortunately, you can’t be in two places at once, so I missed seeing Claymore at the free concert at the Glen Innes Services Club. I’m told this was another great success.


Glen Innes Highlands String Music Convention

17th to 19th November 2017
Expressions of interest to attend this new event are now open. Classes will include fiddle, cello, guitar, banjo and recording your work. Attendance is $250 including all meals from Friday evening to Sunday lunch, plus a Saturday night concert. Parents and Partners can also attend at $125 including all meals. For more information, or to pre-register, contact Julie at Glen Innes Services Club on 02 6732 1355.


Siobhan Owen

Australian Celtic Female Artist 2017

Siobhan Owen

19th to 21st MayRobert Burns Scottish Festival, Camperdown Vic
28th May“Glances of the Past" street fair, Kapunda, SA
16th to 18th June3 Wishes Faery Festival, Mt Edgcumbe Country Park, Cornwall, UK
27th to 30th June                          Festival Les Roches Celtiques 27th June – Cathédrale Saint-Charles, St-Etienne 30th June – Eglise de Rochetaillée
2nd July5pm, Eglise Ave Maria, Deggingen, Germany
8th JulyLutherkirche


Mobile Movie Fest

2017 Mobile Movie Fest

Entries are now open for entries with a special $200 category for musicians. Basically your task is to create music tracks to set the scene for three contrasting film set localities. The music might be reflecting the nature of the locality such as a forest, or setting an emotional state such as an ominous dark room. At only three minutes in total it will be a fun project for musicians.  You have to film your chosen localities on your smartphone and add music tracks.

There is also a $500 open category for a short film (5 mins max), a secondary school category and an environmental puppetry theme. All entries must be shot and edited on Smartphones or Tablets. For more information and technical hints visit www.MobileMovieFest.com. We also have a primary schools festival with its own child friendly website at www.MobilePrimaryFest.com if you know any primary teachers or have primary aged children.

Finalists will be shown on the BIG SCREEN at Tenterfield Cinema on October 14th and 15th. Selected entries will also be featured on the website.  So get your director’s chair out and have some fun. Your entry might be a music video of your group or yourself, which would then be able to be submitted to our www.FolkAndCetlicFusion.com festival and website.


2017 Australian Celtic Festival Busking Competition

First PlaceSeamus Kean and Marty Rose
Second Place     The Handsome Rogues


Celtic Roll of Honour

The Inductees were announced at The Official Celtic Awards Night. Because it’s the 25th Anniversary of the festival, the decision was made to expand the Celtic Roll of Honour by SIX Inductees instead of the usual two.  All the 2017 Inductees were instrumental in the introduction of the Festival and in establishing it as the primary event, not only in Glen Innes, but within the Australian Celtic Community.
Last year Peter Alexander was inducted to The Celtic Roll of Honour. Back in 1989, Peter had an idea and formed a project team to build a ring of standing stones in Australia to celebrate all the Celtic people in Australia. This team sent a letter to all the Councils in New South Wales who had offered a home for Scotland’s Bicentennial gift of a Cairn, now located in Mosman. And this is where the first Inductee came in.
Lex Ritchie OAM, T En E
Lex Ritchie was Council’s Tourism Manager, working from the Train Carriage situated north of the Fire Station. He was a passionate advocate for tourism in Glen Innes. When Lex received this letter, he saw this as a way to put Glen Innes on the national map. Lex worked hard, convincing Council and the community of the value of the project to Glen Innes to develop its tourism potential and to form the basis for community identity. He developed a submission and sent that off for consideration by the Council for the Standing Stones.
The next inductee, then Mayor of Glen Innes, David Donnelly CyC, was asked if he was prepared to visit Scotland in support of the submission. He and his wife Kathy flew to Scotland, underlining the commitment of Glen Innes to the concept of the Standing Stones. While he was still in Scotland, David was able to simultaneously with Peter Alexander, announce that Glen Innes had been chosen as the site for Australia’s own Stone Circle. David Donnelly is a Guardian of the Australian Standing Stones.
A Steering Committee was selected, under the Chairmanship of the late John Tregurtha, an earlier Inductee on the Celtic Roll of Honour. Two more of this year’s Inductees were part of that Committee as well.
John Mathew D Urr arrived in Glen Innes to teach at Glen Innes Public School, a role he fulfilled for twenty years. Mayor Donnelly invited John to join the initial Steering Committee. John is passionately Welsh and safeguarded the involvement of all the “other” Celtic nations who were not Irish or Scottish. John runs The Dawn Service each year at the Festival, and is a Guardian of The Australian Standing Stones.
Perhaps John’s greatest contribution to The Australian Celtic Festival has been as the historian who kept all the records safe. His book The History of the Australian Standing Stones was published in 2012 and is recommended reading for all lovers of the Australian Celtic Festival.
Also a member of the Steering Committee was Malcolm Parsons D Ua, a local businessman. Malcolm was instrumental in bringing Glen Innes Pipe band out of recess in the 1970s, and has been a member ever since. For more than 20 years he has been the Drum Major for the band and has led the massed pipe bands at the Festival. In his trademark uniform, Malcolm has truly been the recognizable Face of the Australian Celtic Festival. Malcolm is also a Guardian of the Australian Standing Stones.

So there was  a Steering Committee and an idea, but where were the actual Stones? Enter the next Inductee, George Rozynski D Urr. George and his wife Val had arrived in Glen Innes years earlier to run a caravan park. But, George had also worked on the Snowy Mountains Hydro-Electric Scheme and knew rocks and their characteristics. Working with Bill Tyson, they searched out local granite rocks.
There was a problem though. There was a need for 40 stones but they hadn’t found that many. George’s experience came into play and he used techniques learned on the Snowy Mountains scheme to split some stones into slabs and the right number could be arranged into a suitable design.
George, born in Poland, became a very proud Guardian of The Australian Standing Stones and wore his Glen Innes tartan kilt with pizazz. What a great thing that a post-war migrant could be so strongly associated with a monument to our early Celtic pioneers.  
The final 2017 Inductee is Raelene Watson D Urr. Raelene, also a Guardian, started her connection with the festival selling raffle tickets at the first and second Festival. By the third one, she briefly ran Crofter’s Cottage. For the following six Festivals, she worked with Lex Ritchie as festival coordinator. At that time the Festival was run as a sub-committee of The Australian Standing Stones Management Board. When the Festival became a separate Committee in 2005, Raelene continued her involvement with the festival, serving on a variety of sub-committees and as Chair in 2014. She is currently Secretary of The Australian Standing Stones Management Board.


2017 Australian Celtic Music Awards

String Loaded Celtic Fiddle Band

Artist of the YearString Loaded Celtic Fiddle Band (above)
Celtic Group of the YearString Loaded Celtic Fiddle Band
Celtic Song of the YearThe Journey by The String Family
Female Artist of the YearSiobhan Owen
Male Artist of the YearDarren Coggan
Instrumental of the YearMorrison’s Jig by String Loaded Celtic Fiddle Band
Album of the YearBeggars and Butterflies by String Loaded Celtic Fiddle Band
International Artist of the Year         Roving Crows
Producer of the YearBen Heneghan and Ian Lawson for Entwined (Siobhan Owen)
Wendy Watts New Celtic Talent of the Year    The String Family


2017 Triquetra Medallions

The Triquetra AchieverMrs Barbara Timmins 
The Triquetra AmbassadorThe University of Queensland Pipe Band at Emmanuel College
The 2017 Triquetra medallion       Margaret Kenning


2017 Australian Celtic Dance Championships

Individual winnerMolly Armstrong
Group Runner-up        Scotia Highland Dancers
Group WinnerCape Byron Celtic Dance


What’s on in Glen Innes??

19th May                    St. Yves’ Day acknowledging Brittany. Flag lowering ceremony Australian Standing Stones 5pm
25th May                                                   Amber Lawrence & Catherine Britt Love & Lies Tour $30 Adults – $15 Children (14 years and under). Doors open 7pm – Show 7.30pm Tickets on sale at Glen Innes Services Club
26th May              Shane Tainaki, live at Glen Innes Services Club
31st May                                                   Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow. Live at the Chapel Theatre Glen Innes. 8pm. Tickets $45. Purchase at Carelle’s or book online at www.trybooking.com/PBET
9th June               Shane Tainaki, live at Glen Innes Services Club
30th June             Darlin & The Midnight Delights, live at Glen Innes Services Club
12th July                      Tynwald Day acknowledging Isle of Man. Flag lowering ceremony Australian Standing Stones 5pm
22nd & 23rd July  Chill in Glen – details to follow next month
22th July              Moscato Dayz, live at Glen Innes Services Club
25th July                       Saint James Day acknowledging Galicia. Flag lowering ceremony at Australian Standing Stones 5pm
28th July              Spanish Flyz live at Glen Innes Services Club
9th August           Herman’s Hermits live at Glen Innes Services Club – $35


What’s on in Armidale??

Second Sunday each month       Armidale Studio Concert Series. Contact kezmusic2@bigpond.com
First Thursday each month                           New England Jazz and Improvisation Collective – NEJIC. https://www.facebook.com/nejic/


Australian Celtic Fashion Award

A new Award presented at The Official Celtic Awards Night, the brief for this completion was to design an evening gown suitable for a red carpet event. Finalists were Zara Blackmore, Ashley Hansell and Graeme Alcock. Student Winner: Zara Blackmore. Zara created an elegant black evening gown with a feature of tartan red roses. The judge commented that this dress could definitely be seen at a red carpet event and was also impressed by the quality of sewing.
Runner up: Ashley Hansell. Ashley created a modern full length tartan outfit featuring an embroidered Celtic knot on the back. The judge was impressed with the quality of handiwork on the outfit.
Winner of the Australian Celtic Fashion Awards: Zara Blackmore. Zara was chosen as the overall winner of the Australian Celtic Fashion Award because the judge believed her dress was not only of a high quality but also a standout as the dress that best fit the brief of an evening gown featuring tartan for a red carpet event.

Winning entry by Zara Blackmore

Winner of the Australian Celtic Fashion Awards: Zara Blackmore

Runner up gown in The Celtic Fashion Awards by Ashley Hansell

Runner up gown in The Celtic Fashion Awards by Ashley Hansell


Clan Celtica – Tribal Thunder (New Zealand)

International Celtic Artist 2016 – Australian Celtic Music Awards

Clan Celtica

28th May        Clevedon Highland Cattle Show
2nd to 5th June           Queen’s Birthday, Auckland
24th June           British Lions vs All Blacks, Eden Park, Auckland
2nd July           North Shore Tattoo
8th July           Matariki Light Festival, Glen Innes, NZ
8th July           MatBritish Lions vs All Blacks, Eden Park, Auckland
3rd September           MOTAT – Fathers’ Day
7th October           Brits on Beach
28th & 29th October           Kawerau Woodfest
31st October           MOTAT – Halloween
11st November           Hororata Highland Games
18st November           Auckland Games – 3 performances
10st December           MOTAT
10st December           Devonport Xmas Show
17st December           Birthday Bash, Beachlands
2nd January 2018           Keltic Fayre, Coromandel
19th to 21stJanuary           Medieval Faire, Taupo
21st January           Burns Supper, Manurewa
28st January           Kiwi North
17st February           Paeroa Tattoo 25st Anniversary and Auckland Drum Fest
25st February           Howick Tattoo
3rd March           Botany Town Square
4rd March           Round The Bays
23rd to 25rd March           Cuba Dupa, Wellington
24rd March           Mangere East Culture Fest


At The New England Motor Lodge

2 Dinner Shows. 6.00 pm each evening. Bookings essential. Phone 02 6732 2922

5th MayNorma O’Hara Murphy
6th May     Siobhan Owen


String Loaded

1th April   Bundanoon Highland Gathering Chieftain of the Day – Jimmy Barnes


The Ceilidh Clan

Brisbane's Scottish dance band, The Ceilidh Clan, will be running a series of fun Community Ceilidhs at the Red Hill Community Sports Club in Brisbane starting on Friday 12th May. Suitable for beginners and families, all welcome! Doors open 6:30pm for a 7pm start. Adults $15, Concession $10, Family $30. Tickets at the door. Other dates are: 28th July, 25th August, 22nd September and 24th November. Full details can be found at www.ceilidhclan.com or phone 0409 760 993.


Gone Molly

"The new voices of Anglo-Celtic folk", Brisbane-based duo Gone Molly are currently crowd-funding to record their debut album. Visit www.gonemolly.com or https://pozible.com/project/gone-molly-debut-album to find out more and to help them reach their goal!

3rd JuneFolk At The Friary, Kenmore 6:30pm
24th June     Coast Acoustics, Nerang 1pm


And finally an exciting new announcement

Outlander Fan Gathering

Website goes live on 1st of June 2017.


What do I have in store for you next month? There will be lots of photos from the Music Awards, of course. And for all Murphy’s Pigs fans, an opportunity to crowd-fund their next venture. The String Music Convention will be kicking off big-time too. Please note my change of phone number. We have finally moved!

Barbara McLennan
Celtic News
02 6734 6246

Published with permission from Celtic News