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Thrill to the internationally known Tartan Terrors

Celtic invasion is sure to excite fans of all ages
The Tartan Terrors play Georgian Theatre this Thursday (Photo contributed)

Perhaps the act should be called 'Tartan Thrills', but the conglomerate of Celtic music and comedy wizardry known as Tartan Terrors hits Barrie this week, appealing to fans of all ages.

The members of the Tartan Terrors have appeared the world over, at prestigious festivals and theatres in North America, including an appearance on ABC’s Good Morning America. Terrors' co-director Ellen Wilkes Irmisch tells BarrieToday her colleagues mix things up throughout the concert, keeping the fans guessing, then losing themselves in the show.

“I love the fact that we give an experience to audiences, as not only do we share Celtic rock to original to traditional tunes, through music, comedy and dance, and throughout the show it is always awesome to watch people dancing, clapping along and truly enjoying themselves, and it is highly encouraged!”

Nor, says Irmisch, is age a barrier, “We will literally have little children to college students to seniors, and we love seeing families come together to experience a night of cultural music, which has, and always is, passed on from one generation to the next.”

Ellen Irmisch is a choreographer and a dancer of many styles, including ballet, Highland, Step Dance, and freestyle. She comes with a barrage of stage credits including years of work with the Stratford Festival.

Ian Irmisch, Ellen’s brother and the other co-director, brings with facility on a host of musical instruments, including bodhrun, bass drum, vocals “along with creating hilarious moments on stage,” says his sister. “He truly has a gift with people which shines through as he connects with audience members through the stories he shares.”

Newfoundland-based Phill Hood is a singer, songwriter and musician, who, leads the band “to create an awesome blend of contemporary and traditional sounds to our music.”

Singer-guitarist Chris Kerba is also a trained comedian and actor. “His great sense of timing with the audience,” says Ellen, “along with his beautifully co-written song Sailing Home, brings a wonderful blend of skills to the show.”

Charlie McKittrick “is not only an awesome percussionist, he also plays guitar and sings. His vibrant energy brings a lovely blend of talents to complement the music.”

Bagpiper and whistle player Peter McArthur, bass player Jake Saenz and newcomer Emily Yarascavitch round out the lineup. Ellen says Saenz shows a “gift for creating musical lines that many have not even thought of adding to a piece.” Ellen hails Oshawa-based Yarascavitch as “a fantastic fiddle player, also is an incredible step dancer, (who) has won numerous awards for her skills.”

On this, the band’s first trip to Barrie, fans can count on a number of musical surprises, including Hood’s Mainland Bound, about his native Newfoundland, as well as Chris Kerba's tribute to his grandfather, called Sailing Home and a fun parody that Ian Irmisch and Chris Kerba created of Johnny Cash's song I've Been Everywhere now called I Drank Every Beer.

Concertgoers will also thrill to the piper tunes Lochleven and Freedom 14.

“And for fiddle and dance,” Ellen concludes, “everyone loves the energetic High Road to Linten and Glasgow Reels.

The Tartan Terrors show, Thursday night, Jan. 18, at the Georgian Theatre should provide a thrill and a great escape from a cold, gloomy winter. For sure, Ellen and her gang are looking forward to tuning up and giving everyone a great time.

“We truly want everyone to come out, have a great time, enjoying time with families, knowing they are also supporting the local theatre, all while enjoying fun and fast-paced music. We look forward to seeing everyone in Barrie!”

The show starts at 7:30. To learn more, click here.

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Glenn Wilkins

About the Author: Glenn Wilkins

Glenn Wilkins, in a 30-year media career, has written for print and electronic media, as well as for TV and radio. Glenn has two books under his belt, profiling Canadian actors on Broadway and NHL coaches.
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