Showing posts from October, 2009

Boston's Charitable Irish Society Presents Silver Key Awards

The oldest Irish organization in the United States - the Charitable Irish Society in Boston - is giving its annual Silver Key Award this year to three worthy recepients: fiddler Larry Reynolds , radio host John Curran , and immigrant advocate Chris Laverty. The award ceremony takes place on Thursday, October 29, from 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. at the Massachusetts Historical Society, 1154 Boylston Street in Boston. The Society was formed in Boston on March 17, 1737 by a group of Irish immigrants who were concerned about the welfare of fellow countrymen who were falling upon hard times. The Society's mission, according to the early records, was to help Irish immigrants "reduced by sickness, shipwreck, old age and other infirmities and unforeseen accidents, (and) for the relief of their poor and indigent countrymen." The mission remains primarily the same today, albeit in a modern context, according to Society President Kelley Kassa. "The Society bestows the Silver Key to

JFK Library Celebrates 30th anniversary on October 20

Congratulations to the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, which celebrated its 30th anniversary this week. Built with the private donations of 36 million people from throughout the world, the nation’s official memorial to President Kennedy was dedicated on October 20, 1979 at a ceremony attended by President Jimmy Carter and members of President Kennedy’s family. In his remarks at the dedication, Senator Edward M. Kennedy described the library as “a beacon signaling the message of this nation, a lighthouse bearing witness to Jack's truth that America at its best can truly light the world.” The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum sits on a ten-acre, waterfront park on Columbia Point overlooking Boston Harbor. Since it opened, the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum has hosted more than 6.5 million visitors from throughout the world, making it one of Boston’s most popular tourist attractions and a major educational center for the study of mid-20th centur

Happy Birthday Eugene O’Neill

Eugene O’Neill, one of the great American playwrights, was born on October 16, 1888 in New York City to parents Ella Quinlan and James O’Neill. Winner of numerous Pulitzer prizes and the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1936, O’Neill spent much of his early life at Monte Cristo Cottage, the family’s summer home on Pequot Avenue in New London , CT . O’Neill also spent considerable time in Massachusetts , taking a playwriting course at Harvard in 1914, then forming a troupe on Cape Cod called the Provincetown Players, which produced his play Bound East for Cardiff , in 1916. In 1928, according to author Susan Wilson, O’Neill’s play, Strange Interlude , was banned in Boston , but played to a sell-out audience in Quincy . O’Neill lived in California for many years, but moved back to Marblehead , MA in 1948, by which time he was suffering from Parkinson’s Disease. He moved to Boston to be close to his physician, staying at the Hotel Shelton on Bay State Road , which is today a Bo

Irish Heritage Festival in Adams Village, Dorchester, Celebrates Boston's Irish Heritage

Boston – The first annual Irish Heritage Festival (IHF) in Adams Corner, Dorchester takes place on Sunday, October 11, 2009, from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. The festival is being organized by local Irish and Irish-Americans along with local businesses, as a way of celebrating the history and culture of Boston’s large Irish community. Irish step dancing, set dancing, and Gaelic sports are being showcased at the festival, alongside activities for children and families, along with some of the area’s finest traditional Irish musicians. “The entertainment line-up includes: Robbie O’Connell, Aoife Clancy, Larry Reynolds, The Harney Set Dancers, Erin’s Melody, Celtic Cougars and growing by the day,” says committee member Mairin Keady, who is herself a noted Gaelic singer. Joshua Tree, a U2 cover band, also performs, as well as singer Pauline Wells of Milton. This festival is dedicated to the memory of Michael Joyce, a native of Connemara, County Galway, Ireland who lived in Dorchester and wo


Grammy Award winner, Broadway star, and pop icon Maureen McGovern presents her musical memoir, A Long and Winding Road , at the Huntington Theatre in Boston from October 9 through November 15, 2009. Conceived and written by Philip Himberg and Maureen McGovern and presented in cooperation with Arena Stage, A Long and Winding Road c hronicles the moments that define the Baby Boomer Generation. Ms. McGovern returns to her roots as a folk singer as she performs the classic songs The New York Times has dubbed “the second half of the Great American Songbook.” Sundance Institute Producing Artistic Director Philip Himberg directs; Jeffrey Harris provides musical direction and accompaniment. McGovern’s almost 40-year career includes Grammy Award nominations for “Best New Artist” and “Best Traditional Pop Vocal,” a Grammy Award for “Best Musical Recording for Children” for her participation in “Songs from the Neighborhood: The Music of Mister Rogers,” and the Academy Award-winning Gold

Boston College Welcomes Legendary Irish Harpist Mary O’Hara on Sunday, October 11

Renowned singer and harpist Mary O’Hara gives a multimedia presentation on her life and her musical career at Boston College entitled, Travels with my Harp: an Afternoon with Mary O’Hara. The event takes place at Devlin Hall on BC’s campus in Chestnut Hill, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 11, 2009. After the lecture, Ms. O’Hara will officially help open an exhibit of her works at BC’s John J. Burns Library , entitled, "Mary O'Hara, Singer and Harpist: A Retrospective." The exhibit features posters, recordings, correspondence, and books from the Mary O'Hara Papers at the Burns Library. O’Hara has recorded 20 albums, starting with her debut recording, Songs of Erin, released in 1956. Her autobiography, Scent of the Roses, sold over 1.5 million copies worldwide since it was published in 1980. Mary O’Hara’s lecture is part of the Gaelic Roots series at Boston College directed by Séamus Connolly, Sullivan Artist-in-Residence. All events are free and open