Celtic Japan Tsunami Relief - Charity Concert

I suppose there is no need to say, we had an absolutely fantastic night with all artists and people visited there. Thank all of you again for the wonderful wonderful night for the hope in a child's smile.

   Message from Masashi Ohkuma (Midori no Tohoku Genki Programme)
(in English)
 I wish to thank all of you for organising this concert for the children affected by the disaster in Japan.

As I write, Japan is making every effort to recover from the disaster. Everyone is putting all their strength into leaving a better world for all children. We too, have put our hearts fully into holding camps for the purpose of helping children avoid the debilitating effects of PTSD. This is the first time such camps have been tried in Japan. Because of this, newspapers and TV stations have given them much attention resulting in a very significant response. I think it is fair to expect that significantly more camps will be held in the coming year.

When I heard about this concert, I could not stop crying. It was not that I just recalled all the support we received from people throughout the world, it made me realise again that it is OK to say that the situation we find ourselves in is "sad", "hard to bear" and "really tough". The reason I say this is that the effort that is being put into this recovery has had as it's purpose making people forget about the lives lost, the natural beauty destroyed and the many children's lives affected. This earthquake also triggered a nuclear accident, an accident of such immensity in human history that it leaves people with no choice but to rethink their lives. Truly sincere "sadness and anger" at what has happened is what can make for genuine change. With these feelings, it is possible to create a world where this will not happen again. Through this concert, we have been able to realise in a deeper way many thoughts we had begun to forget. Thank you so much for your support. I would like to join with you in creating a new and better world together.

With sincerest regards....
Masashi Ohkuma
Midori no Tohoku Genki Programme

(in Japanese)


今回のコンサートの様子を聴き、私は涙が止まらなくなりました。それは、世界の人々によって支えられていることを思い返しただけでなく、今、日本の置かれている状況は、「悲しい」「苦しい」「大変なことになっている」と言っていいんだと改めて自覚することにつながったからです。なぜなら、これまでの復興への努力がいつしか、今回の震災でなくなった多くの人の命や失われた自然、そして、今なお多くの子どもたちの心を傷つけていることを忘れさせていたからなのです。 今回の震災は、原発事故という人類史上最も大きな転換を余儀なくされる事故を誘発しました。大きな転換を可能にするのは、本当の「深い悲しみや怒り」だと思います。その思いがあるからこそ、全世界で二度とこのようなことが起きない世界を創り上げることができるのです。今回のコンサートによって、私たちが忘れかけていたこの思いをより深く刻みつけることができましたご支援ありがとうございました。これからの新しい世界を共に創り上げていきたいと思います。 重ねてお礼申し上げます。

大熊 雅士

   Message from Martin Tourish (Composer)
 I've always thought that the worst thing to befall anyone is a broken spirit, yet at some point, everyone in the world will endure this. The greatest thing then that anyone can do, is to play some part, however small, in restoring that spirit. This is a dynamic that we can all engage with and if anything, I hope this piece will encourage this engagement in whatever way, big or small, that we can.

The 'wise man' in the song isn't an academic, famous figure or necessarily even a man, but rather the voice in us all that says; don't look back in anger, for all that is, is but a passing flame, and in your darkest night of winter; may peace be yours tonight.

‘Suite for Japan’ by Martin Tourish

And the wise man said. Don't look back in anger
For all that is, is but a passing flame
And in this darkest night of winter
May peace be yours tonight

And the pounding rain may beat it's hardest
The thunder may roar as strong
But in the midst of devastation
The eye will bring it's calm

So come all ye friends of far and near
And listen to your song unfold
Trust in your heart, move strongly forward
May peace be yours tonight
May peace be yours tonight


 Sean McKeon - Uileann pipes -

 Sean comes from a very musical family in Dublin and has amassed a multitude of Fleadh Ceol na hEireann titles along with being awarded TG4's ‘young traditional musician of the year’ in 2005. Sean has performed with a whole host of traditional artists as well as being a teacher in Na Pioibairi Uilleann

 Conor McEvoy - Fiddle -

 Born in Dublin now living in Meath. Son of John McEvoy (fiddle), Conor has won underage and senior Oireactas Titles as well as being awarded TG4's ‘young traditional musician of the year’ in 2009.

 John Blake - Guitar -

 Born in London, John is highly sought after for his many musical talents; on guitar, flute, piano and bouzouki. He has recorded with a vast range of musician’s such as Liz and Yvonne Kane, Oisin MacDiarmada and Jesse Smith.

 Ályth McCormack - Voice -

 From the Island of Lewis in the Hebrides off Scotland. Her voice is described as having ‘spun glass fragility belying a sinewy strength’. Ályth has regularly toured with the Chieftains since 2008. She recently formed a duo with Tríona Marshall.

 Triona Marshall - Harp -

 From Portlaoise. Has been performing with the Chieftains since 2003. She is considered to be one of Irelands foremost harpists. Tríona recently formed a duo with Ályth McCormack.

 Morgan Crowley - Voice -

 Morgan has won many distinctions and awards at national level (the youngest ever recipient of the prestigious JohnMcCormack prize and Overall Musicianship Award from Music Festival of Ireland) and international level (Luciano Pavarotti Radio Award, Cardiff Top Ten Voices of International Musical Theatre and Outstanding Male Entertainer Award from IMTF).

 Frances Marshall - Voice -

 Classically trained Soprano studying at the Royal Irish Academy of Music with Sylvia O’Regan. Winner of the Thomas Moore Cup in Feis Ceoil 2011 and prizewinner in the Percy Whitehead Cup and Soprano Cup.

 Ranjo - Thomas Charles Marshall
- Satsuma biwa -

 From Portlaoise. Lived in Japan from 1994 to 2008 where he studied Shakuhachi (Bamboo flute) and Satsuma biwa (Lute developed by the samurai of southern Japan).

 Philip Horan - Shakuhachi -

 Lived in Japan from 1999-2001 where he studied Tozan-ryû Shakuhachi. He completed a Masters in Ethnomusicology at the Irish World Music Centre in Limerick in 2002. He also makes and performs on his own Shakuhachi.

 Hazuki Demachi - Shakuhachi -

 After learning Kinko school Honkyoku (music played by Japanese Zen monks called komuso), she started to work as a shakuhachi player in an enka club in Tokyo and has performed in numerous concerts as a soloist and as a member of a Japanese traditional instrumental band.

 Kevin Conneff - Voice, Bodhrán -

 Member of the Chieftains. Released solo album 'The Week Before Easter' in 1988.I n the early 1970s, he joined Christy Moore for what became a benchmark album, Prosperous.

 Paul McGrattan - Flute -

 From Dublin’s northside, has been playing flute since an early age and is now regarded as one of the top traditional flute players in Ireland. His first influence was the South Donegal fiddle tradition, which he heard on his holidays in the area as a child.

 Tim Edey - Guitar -

 From Broadstairs, Kent. Tim plays guitar with the Sharon Shannon band and often with Kerry Irish music legend Seamus Begley. He has toured every country in Europe with German based dance troupe Magic of the dance with world champion dancer Michael Donnellan.

 Martin Tourish
- Accordionist and composer -

 From Donegal. Won TG4's 'Young traditional Musician of the Year' award in 2008. Involved with many types of music, including Balkan, Klezmer, Rock, the music of Astor Piazzolla, and has shared the stage with acts as diverse as Altan, The Cafe Orchestra and Patti Smith, recorded with National Symphony Orchestra.

 Ciaran Tourish - Fiddle -

 From Donegal, member of Altan. Ciaran took up the fiddle under the guidance of local legendary fiddler and teacher, Dinny McLaughlin.He released his first solo recording "Down the Line" in 2005 featuring guest musicians Arty McGlynn, Paul Brady, Maura O'Connell, Tim O'Brien, Alison Krauss and Jerry Douglas among others.

 Michael Lee - Presenter -

 Originally from New Zealand, he completed a Master’s degree at the University of Canterbury (NZ), with a dissertation on Jacobean English theatre. As a freelance broadcaster and speaker Michael has presented feature programmes, opera broadcasts and concerts for RTÉ lyric fm, and given courses for the UCD Adult Education Centre.

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