As a big fan of the “Twelve Irish Tenors,” it was with some trepidation that I attended the show that has replaced it at the Kings Castle Theatre in Branson, Dublin’s Irish Tenors and The Celtic Ladies on June11th. It didn’t take but two notes, ok so maybe it was a bar or two, of the “Celtic Ladies” beautiful show opening performance of “Danny Boy” to put my mind at ease and let me know that the tradition of beautiful and powerful Irish and, I was soon to find out, “Celtic” music, was not only alive and well at the Kings Castle, but evolving into a new and even more entertaining show establishing its own unique tradition and standard of entertainment excellence.
By the time they had finished their first set including “Scarborough Fair,” an acapella performance of “Loch Lomand” and the “Sky Boat Song” and Maggie Moore’s beautiful solo of “O Mio Babbino Caro” I was thinking “12 Irish Who?” Just kidding, but the performance of “Celtic Ladies,” Maggie Moore, Kelly Osbourne, Heather Peterson and Sarah Tochtrop was a wonderful way to start the show and set the bar, in terms of audience expectation, for what was to follow.
Not to be outdone, the “Dublin Irish enors,” Tony Turner, Robert Quibell, Jay MacManus, Alex Webster and Chism Ruden, opened their first set. They started with, among others, an inspirational performance of “You Raised Me Up,” a medley of Irish Songs including “Irish Eyes Are Smiling,” “Sweet Rosie O Grady, “McNamara’s Band and “Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral” and Elton Johns “Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word.”
Each of these vocalists, in their own right, is impressive, but when combined with the others in their group and with both groups together the result is a beautiful, powerful and unique vocal performance that is not available on any other Branson stage. Their presentation of the shows unique blend of Celtic music mixed with just the right amount of current contemporary and classical favorites is a joy to experience and will be enjoyed by “music lovers of all ages.” Add great lighting effects, sound, sets, costuming and choreography surprises with virtually every number and the result is a completely wonderful, entertaining and inspiring entertainment experience.
Will children enjoy this show? There are no animals, peer performances by other children or segments specifically designed for children, but when combined with its sets, costuming and dancing, children who have an appreciation of or simply enjoy music will like this show. [An aside, for a show that will “knock the socks off adults” as well as children don’t miss Le Grand Cirque also at the Kings Castle Theatre.]
In a show packed with some of the most touching and beautiful music of all time, presented by singers with such talent and energy, there are many highlights .From those, three of my favorites were the Celtic Ladies performance of the show’s opening number, “Danny Boy,” the opening Irish medley by the Dublin Tenors and their combined performances of “I Believe” and, my all-time favorite song, “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” My absolute favorite however, was Maggie Moore’s magnificent performance of “Nessun Dorma” from Puccini’s opera “Turandot.” What a beautiful job!
For additional information or tickets for Dublin’s Irish Tenors and The Celtic Ladies or any of Branson’s shows and attractions or for lodging arrangements please contact the Branson Tourism Center, one of Branson’s largest and most respected vacation planning services by calling 1-800-785-1550 or through its website, www.BransonTourismCenter.com.