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Celtic Steps spark a show of solidarity for Ukraine

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World champion Irish musicians and dancers put on quite a show at the weekend with a spectacular line-up of high energy jigs and reels for the people of Ukraine.

SHOWTIME: Enjoying the Celtic Steps The Show on Friday night were: David Rea (Celtic Steps The Show) Jennifer Rea Natalya Krasnenkova George Saary Sean Murphy (Celtic Steps The Show) Aine O’Donoghue (Director of Killarney Racecourse) and Gerard Coughlan (Chairman of Killarney Racecourse). Photos: Dylan Clifford

On Friday, Celtic Steps The Show welcomed over one hundred Ukrainian guests to their Irish music and dance show at Killarney Racecourse where they were introduced to the magic of Irish music and culture.

“For many months, we’ve all watched what’s been unfolding in the Ukraine with great sadness," Sean Murphy, co-producer of Celtic Steps, said.

"A couple of weeks ago, I met a Ukrainian woman and her child at the Innisfallen Hotel and it felt like the right time to extend the hand of hospitality. I invited them and the wider group to the show in the hope that the music might help raise their spirits.”

The Ukrainian group were collected from their place of residency at the Innisfallen Hotel courtesy of Flynn Coaches and transported to the racecourse, where they were welcomed by a sea of blue and yellow balloons at the entrance to the theatre. The highlight of the night was the performance of the Ukrainian National Anthem by the Celtic Steps musicians, who had taken the time earlier in the day to learn the piece.

“Celtic Steps The Show, thank you so much for the Ukrainian Anthem, we appreciate it a lot, we were in tears, Slava Ukraine!” Natalya Krasnenkova remarked.

David Rea, co-producer and narrator of the show, said on the night that they "are privileged to have some guests here tonight, who through no fault of their own ended up coming to Ireland".

"We are delighted to have you and we hope you have a nice time in Kerry for as long as you are here…this is a small tribute to you.”

George Saary who works at the Innisfallen Hotel in Killarney and who helped coordinate the event added “On behalf of the Ukrainian people, we want to thank you for your great welcome. Some of the group said they barely slept after experiencing the energy and excitement of the show and they all appreciated the love and care that was shown to them on the night.”

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Marian Players excited to get back on stage

By Michelle Crean With a cast of over 50 it’s no small undertaking – but that won’t deter one panto group who are only too happy to get back on […]

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By Michelle Crean

With a cast of over 50 it’s no small undertaking – but that won’t deter one panto group who are only too happy to get back on stage this weekend.

It’s been two years since they staged a show due to COVID but the Marian Players Rathmore are rearing to go tomorrow night (Saturday) with their hilarious show ‘Dame Annie Goes West’.

A medley of comedy and colour, combined with music and dance, locals from both sides of the border have been working together to make it a great production.

“We’re very excited, we can’t wait! It’s great to be back,” Mary Hickey told the Killarney Advertiser.

“They [the cast] got together in October and they’re at it since.”

Val Moynihan is the “genius behind it”, she added, and it’s produced by her son Brian Hickey, and co-written with Eilish Coakley.

She said that they have loads working in the background also doing the stage curtains, lighting and making costumes amongst other tasks.

“It’s a pantomime without the pantomime in the background! It’s a whole community effort both sides of the border.”

Evening shows start at 7.30pm tomorrow (Saturday) and again Sunday (January 29) at 3pm.

Mid-week shows continue on Wednesday next (February 1) at 7.30pm, Thursday (February 2) at 7.30pm and also Saturday (February 4) at 7.30pm and Sunday (February 5) at 3pm.

The booking office (085 2031730) will be open every day from 2pm to 6pm to reserve seats and collect tickets and is located adjacent to the community centre, next to Christy’s Take Away.

Seats may be reserved over the phone too and paid for using a bank card. All proceeds are going to Kerry Parents & Friends Association.

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Arbutus furniture to feature on RTÉ tonight

By Sean Moriarty A Killarney furniture restorer’s work will feature on RTE’s ‘Nationwide’ tonight for the second time. Since James Flynn retired from the ESB, he has devoted his time […]

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By Sean Moriarty

A Killarney furniture restorer’s work will feature on RTE’s ‘Nationwide’ tonight for the second time.

Since James Flynn retired from the ESB, he has devoted his time to tracing the history of Killarney’s Arbutus furniture industry.

He restores pieces that he finds in online auctions all over the world.

The Arbutus Tree, sometimes called the Killarney Strawberry Tree, is more prevalent in Killarney National Park than any other region in the country.

In October 2020, the Ross Road man discovered a games table for sale in Boston. The rare piece of handcrafted furniture that dates from just after the famine era, was returned to Killarney in March 2021 by Mr Flynn.

In June last year Mr Flynn and his furniture collection featured on Nationwide and tonight (Friday) his segment on the Arbutus furniture industry will get a second airing.

“RTÉ Nationwide contacted me to say they are giving the Nationwide programme on the Killarney Arbutus Furniture a repeat showing,” he told the Killarney Advertiser.

“It really highlights the world famous industry that was in 1800s and up to 1952.”

The programme will be broadcast at 7pm tonight, and will feature handcrafters from all over Ireland. This will include around seven minutes with James.”

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