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20th Anniversary Celebration of P.V. O’Donnell Comhaltas

Jerry O’Sullivan, Séagda Coyle and Eugene Bender will join the 20th Anniversary celebration of the P.V. O’Donnell Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann traditional Irish music session on Thursday, December 19, at St. Gabriel’s Church Hall, 26 Broadway, Milford.  The free session starts at 7:45 pm.  BYOB.  Musicians, dancers, singers and guests are welcomed.

Founded in 1999 by button accordionist John Whelan, the Comhaltas chapter was named for P.V. O’Donnell, the highly regarded fiddler, originally from Inishowen, County Donegal, Ireland.  P.V. eventually moved to Canada and for over 10 years played in several highly respected bands that traveled in Canada and across the U.S.  After moving to Manchester, Connecticut in 1987, he hosted a weekly session in Hartford and played in sessions throughout the area, eventually having the Connecticut shoreline Comhaltas chapter named after him.

Jerry O’Sullivan, the gifted uilleann piper, is known throughout the world for his mastery of the instrument.  As America’s ambassador of the Irish pipes, he has appeared on more than 90 albums and has performed or recorded with The Boston Pops, Don Henley, Paul Winter, James Galway, Dolly Parton, The Nashville Symphony Orchestra, Eileen Ivers, and others.

Séagda Coyle, a talented button accordion player from New York, released his first solo debut album “Rip the Bellows” in 2017 to critical acclaim.  Coyle is “a powerful and very talented button accordionist who plays with great drive and has high respect for the tradition,” said Dan Neely of the Irish Echo.

Fiddler Eugene Bender started playing traditional Irish music in the Sligo style when he was in the third grade.  He was a student of fiddle maestro Brian Conway for over 13 years, and won first place in the under-18 fiddle category in the Mid-Atlantic Region Fleadh several years ago.  He currently plays in sessions and events throughout the tri-state area.

Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann was founded in 1951 in Ireland to promote Irish traditional music, song, dance and language.  For information on the session, call 203-876-9973.

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