Two up-and-coming, internationally acclaimed Celtic music bands, one that treasures the heritage of traditional Irish music and one that brings a totally new rock aesthetic to the genre, will come to The Alden in McLean’s stage in the coming few weeks, just in time to get in the mood for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. The theatre is located at 1234 Ingleside Avenue, inside the McLean Community Center.
Nova Scotia’s Celtic rock ambassadors, Grand Dérangement, will perform a mix of new Acadian music at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 22. Tickets are $20, $15 for McLean tax district residents.
Grand Dérangement is a group from the Saint Mary’s Bay area of Southwestern Nova Scotia. The name refers to the expulsion of the Acadians in 1755, but also alludes to the group’s ability to rouse its audience. The music is exciting, the show is a visual feast and the highly poetic songs, while insightful, defy the audience to sit still. This award-winning group, comprising Daniel LeBlanc (fiddle, guitar), Briand Melanson (drums, lead vocals), Jean-Pascal Comeau (bass, step dancer), Charles Robicheau (guitar) and Monique Comeau (step dancer), is very eclectic in its musical approach, drawing from such disparate musical inspiration as French chansonniers, folk, Celtic, rock, and Broadway.
Grand Dérangement holds a special place in the world of French-language music, building a bridge between the old and the new, and succeeding in acquiring an acclaimed international reputation. The group’s popularity is growing in Europe and the United States and this is a rare opportunity to see them in person.
On Saturday, March 1, at 8 p.m., The Alden welcomes Ireland’s own Caladh Nua as they embark on their first U.S. tour. Caladh Nua, pronounced “coll-ah noo-ah,” which means “New Harbour” or “New Haven” is a tightly-knit, vibrant and talented band with its origins deeply rooted in the southeastern counties of Ireland. Tickets are $27, $18 for McLean district residents.
Through a series of international tours and festivals across the globe, which saw the band take the stage in cities such as Paris, Vienna, Copenhagen, Berlin, Mumbai and Vancouver, and having been invited to play for the former Irish President, Mary McAleese, at her residence in Ireland, Caladh Nua has cast a uniquely captivating net of Irish music and song to an ever-receptive and increasing worldwide audience. Comprising five versatile musicians and singers (Eoin O’Meachair, Paddy Tutty, Lisa Butler and Derek Morrissey) playing a wide selection of instruments (from banjo to fiddle, guitar to bodhrán, tin whistle to button accordion), the band has captured the essential qualities of traditional Irish music and balanced them finely with an innovative, contemporary styling.
With a long list of television and radio appearances under their belt, and two highly acclaimed albums already in the bag (“Next Stop” and “Happy Days”), Caladh Nua’s musicians are as accomplished off-stage as they are on. Performing a vast repertoire of haunting songs and evocative tunes, the band continues to lead their listeners on a musical escapade through a sound-scape of their own creation.
Tickets are on sale now. For more information or to purchase tickets online, visit: www.aldentheatre.org or call 703-790-0123.