MISSOULA – “An Irish Christmas in Montana,” a concert featuring the collaboration between the Irish of Montana and Ireland that celebrates the tradition, music, song and dance associated with Christmas, will take the stage at the University of Montana in December.
The first performance is at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 6, in UM’s Music Recital Hall, and another performance will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 7, in the same location.
While acts from Ireland performed Irish Christmas concerts at UM in recent years, this year’s concert will feature UM students and other Montanans celebrating their Irish heritage. The setting is a traditional Irish cottage, with neighbors coming and going, sharing good tidings and singing and dancing to their hearts’ content.
“There is a growing desire among Irish students in Montana to play a more active role in their culture,” UM Irish Studies Program Director Traolach O’Riordain said. “Many of these students are of Irish heritage but claim that the culture was not passed down to them. Learning the Irish language, dancing, singing and putting on this concert is their way of taking back the inheritance that is rightfully theirs. The concert is more than just a show of festive celebration; it’s a strong cultural statement about the revival of Irish culture in Montana.”
Tickets cost $20 per family (whether you have two or 20 kids), $15 for general admission, $10 for seniors and Friends of Irish Studies members, and $5 for students. Tickets can be purchased online at http://www.friendsofirishstudies.com/ or at the door. All proceeds benefit UM’s Irish Studies Program. The concert is sponsored by The Friends of Irish Studies in the West, the Ancient Order of Hibernians, LMG Security, and Ireland Tile and Marble.