November 29, 2005

LEWISBURG, Pa. — Tomaseen Foley and his troupe will perform A Celtic Christmas Saturday, Dec. 3, at 8 p.m. in the Weis Center for the Performing Arts at Bucknell University. Tickets for the performance are $20.

Drawing from the rich treasury of Ireland's cultural heritage, the performance recreates a night before Christmas in a farmhouse at the far end of a remote parish in the west of Ireland, when the neighbors gather to grace the long wintry night with music, song, dance and storytelling.

"For my neighbors in Tempall an Ghleanntain the world was not made of atoms, it was made of stories. The world, the universe itself, was God telling his story," says Foley.

A Celtic Christmas seeks to restore storytelling, once the most revered of the Celtic arts, to its ancient glory. Along with the music, the program features the kind of dancing that has become so popular in recent years. Long before Riverdance, ordinary Irish men and women knocked sparks off the flagstone floors of their cottages with jigs, reels, and hornpipes.

"For the 10th successive year on national tour, Foley's performers bring fiddles, whistles, flutes, accordions, guitars, drums, and the mesmerizing uilleann pipes to rekindle the flame of the Irish winter hearth, to raise the rafters with the laughter of their stories, and to rattle the floorboards with their fiery dances," says Bill Boswell, executive director of the Weis Center.

Storyteller Tomaseen Foley was born on a small farm in Teampall an Ghleanntain, the source of the show and of his stories. He has recorded two CDs including Parcel from America, which was developed into a musical that played to sold-out houses last Christmas at the Oregon Cabaret Theatre.

Tickets for Weis Center performances are available in person from the Campus Box Office in the Weis Center weekdays 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and one hour prior to events. Tickets also are available by calling 570-577-1000 or online at http://www.bucknell.edu/boxoffice/

This performance is made possible in part by a generous contribution from Dorothy F. Goodman. The 2005-06 season of Weis Center events is made possible in part by generous funding from the Bucknell University Association for the Arts and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Additional support for the series is provided by numerous and generous private donors including members of the Weis Center Green Room Circle and Green Room Board.

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Posted Nov. 28, 2005

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