Celtic rockers Claymore’s annual A Celtic Christmas is back by popular demand, and as promised, it is getting bigger than ever.
Claymore have been bringing together their mates for this December shindig for several years now and it is always a riotous affair. The saying goes that the Celts know how to celebrate, well it doesn’t get a much bigger family event than Christmas. What started as a planned small get-together has morphed into a highlight on the Celtic music calendar and a Christmas party for one and all. Each year Claymore invite a special guest to join them for the party – previous years have seen the likes of Damien Leith, Eric Bogle and Colin Lilly share the stage – and this year is no exception.
Dropping in while on tour from Ireland, acclaimed fiddle player Manus McGuire will be joining the shenanigans, alongside Melbourne’s Saoirse, the Glenbrae Celtic Dancers and the Hawthorn Pipe Band.
For lead singer William Hutton, the band’s A Celtic Christmas show is one of their favourite gigs of the year. “It’s a bit of an annual pilgrimage and like every time we have done this show, we feel it’s getting bigger and better,” he says. “For the first time this year, we have an international special guest – this year’s show is one that is sure to please one and all. I’m so looking forward to this one as it feels like we are finally back hitting the ground running with our own brand of Aussie Celtic rock, with a kick-ass feel! Come and get it!”
When it comes to Celtic rock, Claymore have written themselves into festival folklore in Australia. Internationally, Claymore are familiar faces on the line-up of the revered Festival Interceltique de Lorient in France, the world’s largest Celtic festival. As multi-instrumentalists, Claymore not only manage to combine traditional elements of Celtic music, but they take that passion and soul and rock it right into the 21st century in a way that makes all their performances an unforgettable experience. Few bands can pull off the sensitive task of melding traditional and modern melodies, but that’s something of a specialty for Claymore. Not only that, but they manage to pen beautiful original Celtic compositions, and even lend their style to some power rock classics, all with an Irish and Scottish twist.
Harking from Ireland, Manus McGuire is an internationally acclaimed fiddle player. With a slew of solo fiddle albums to his name, he also has recording titles with his brother Seamus, and numerous albums recorded with bands such as Buttons and Bows, Moving Cloud, Brock McGuire Band and Full Tilt. He was awarded the Male Irish Traditional Musician of the Year accolade in the USA in 2006 by the Irish American News. When he is not touring and performing, he also teaches fiddle to intermediate and advances students.
Saoirse, the Gaelic word for freedom, are known for their vibrant Irish vocals and dance. They delight their audience with beautiful renditions of Irish ballads and original works and their spirited jigs and reels are guaranteed to get the feet tapping. They’ve performed at a swag of the country’s premier festivals including Port Fairy Folk Festival, Brunswick Music Festival and the National Folk Festival to name a few.
Always a highlight at Claymore’s A Celtic Christmas events are the Glenbrae Celtic Dancers. “The Glenbrae Celtic Dancers – The Clayettes – are just so important to a Claymore show,” says William. “We are so lucky to have these amazing Australian champion dancers as our partners in our entertainment journey for so many years. The level of talent in this group is beyond measure and they are all such wonderful human beings to boot.”
Tickets for Claymore’s A Celtic Christmas are on sale now.
Thursday 15th December 2022
Chapel Of Chapel, PRAHRAN, VIC www.chapeloffchapel.com.au