November 12, 2013

Natalie MacMaster in "Cape Breton Christmas" Dec. 7 at Weis Center

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By Kathryn Kopchik

LEWISBURG, Pa. — Natalie MacMaster's "Cape Breton Christmas" will take the stage on Saturday, Dec. 7, at 7:30 p.m. at the Weis Center for the Performing Arts at Bucknell University. The performance features the Selinsgrove Intermediate Vocal Ensemble, directed by Reva Herrold.

The event is sponsored, in part, by Coldwell Banker Penn One Real Estate.

The Boston Herald says, "To call Natalie MacMaster the most dynamic performer in Celtic music today is high praise, but it still doesn't get at just how remarkable a concert artist this Cape Breton Island fiddler has become."

MacMaster began her fiddling career at 16 releasing her debut album "Four on the Floor." Her musical venture spans over three decades, completing 11 albums, performing thousands of shows and collaborating with a multitude of world-renowned artists.

Her most recent album, "Cape Breton Girl", has been self-described as a "straight-ahead, traditional record." The album is filled with an invigorating collection of toe-tapping jigs, reels, and strathspeys that embodies her most cherished values, her family and home, tradition, and faith.

MacMaster's many projects have seen her collaborate and perform with Alison Krauss, the Chieftains, Paul Simon and Pavarotti. Her live performances are a testament to her incandescent musicianship and boundless energy, featuring foot-tapping rave-ups, heart-rending ballads and world-class step dancing and fiddling at the same time.

Her family and work-life have been intertwined since marrying fellow fiddler Donnell Leahy in 2002. MacMaster believes incorporating family into her performances and music is the perfect way to maintain a healthy work-life balance. Their five children often join them on tour.

The dedicated work ethic MacMaster has shown throughout her career has garnered her well-deserved recognition throughout the industry: multiple gold albums and awards from all across North America as well as an honorary doctorate from St. Thomas University and honorary degrees from Niagara University and Trent University. She has also received the Arts & Letters Award from the Canadian Association of New York, the honor of being a member of the Order of Canada and, most recently, receiving an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree from the Atlantic School of Theology.

Tickets for the performance are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors ages 62+, $15 for youth under 18, and $15 for non-Bucknell college students.

Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling the Campus Box Office at 570-577-1000.

Tickets are also available in person from several locations including the Weis Center lobby weekdays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; the Barnes & Noble at Bucknell University bookstore in Lewisburg weekdays and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, 12:30 to 4 p.m.; and the CAP Center Box Office, located on the ground floor of the Elaine Langone Center, weekdays, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For more information about this performance contact Lisa Leighton, marketing and outreach director, at 570-577-3727 or by email at

The next performance in the Weis Center's 2013-14 Series will be free family-friendly performance of David Engel's Pirate School on Saturday, Dec. 14, at 1 p.m. at the Weis Center. Pirate School! (ages 4-8) is the madcap, swashbuckling one-man family vaudeville show that features its own mischievous blend of clown theater, slapstick antics, adept magic and puppetry, zany music, rich special effects score and its signature brand of boisterous full-audience participation. Attendees are asked to bring a canned food item, which will be donated to the Union County Children and Youth Services.

For more information about the Weis Center for the Performing Arts, go to or