Nothing says Christmas like a Celtic-inspired take on traditional Christmas favourites, combined with a foot-stomping, eclectic mix of Celtic jigs and reels. Canada’s rabble-rousing Celtic-FUSION band – Rant Maggie Rant – is bringing the holiday spirit to Sarnia’s Imperial Theatre on November 30, 2017, along with special guests the Sarnia School of Irish Dance.
This double bill concert also features JUNO Award nominee Emm Gryner. The spotlight will shine on each during solo sets in the intimate confines of Sarnia’s Imperial Theatre. The concert starts at 8 p.m.
JUST THE FACTS
Event: Rant Maggie Rant in concert with Frost & Fire: A Celtic Christmas Celebration!
Date: November 30, 2017
Time: 8 p.m.
Location: Imperial Theatre, 168 Christina St. North, Sarnia, ON N7T 5T9
More information: www.rantmaggierant.com
Rant Maggie Rant, which has previously performed with the International Symphony Orchestra, will be entertaining the audience with their distinctive rootsy Christmas tunes, ancient and traditional Celtic melodies, blazing jigs and reels, lesser known seasonal fare and new material from their recently released CD Latitude.
“We have a few new instrumental sets and a couple new songs that we will be debuting to our audiences on this tour,” said Barry James Payne, a member of the band. “It’s a fun show with a good healthy dose of up-tempo jigs and reels, as well as some traditional and contemporary seasonal and Christmas songs for the hearth that will make you think about what Christmas really means.”
As well, Rant Maggie Rant will be performing some tracks from their Christmas recording, entitled Frost & Fire: A Celtic Christmas Celebration (2011).
Based in Stratford, Ontario, Rant Maggie Rant showcases the talents of Lindsay Schindler (fiddle, background vocals) who also performs with the acclaimed Ontario folk trio Trent Severn; Glen Dias (lead vocals, recorders, percussion); and Barry James Payne (guitars, harmonica, bouzouki, background vocals). Joining them will be guest musicians Steve Clark (bass) and Rob Larose (percussion), who both hail from London, Ontario, and Toronto’s Daev Clysdale (Irish whistle, Irish flute and accordion).
Emm Gryner (guitar and vocals) is a Canadian singer-songwriter best known for her 1998 indie hit Summerlong. Twice nominated for a Juno Award, Emm Gryner is the co-founder of the acclaimed Ontario folk trio Trent Severn. She has sung and performed with David Bowie’s band, playing with Bowie at the Glastonbury Festival in the U.K. and she appears on Bowie’s live album, entitled at the Beeb. In May 2013, she collaborated with Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield on a cover version of David Bowie’s Space Oddity, which was recorded partly on board the International Space Station.
“I was born in Camlachie, Ontario – not far from Sarnia – so this performance is like a homecoming for me,” said Emm Gryner, who has resided in Los Angeles, New York City, and Montreal. “I’m hoping to see some family and friends in the audience, as that’s what Christmas is all about.”
The performance also includes the instructors from the Sarnia School of Irish Dance who have more than 50 years of combined dance experience. The school specializes in traditional Irish dance that showcases the grace and intricate footwork of this dance form.
A joyful melting pot of sound, Rant Maggie Rant is loved by traditionalists who enjoy their time-honoured style, while new Celtic music listeners are drawn to the band’s fusion of World influences of hand drumming and Latin, Middle Eastern and African rhythms.
Rant Maggie Rant was one of the hits at this summer’s Home County Music & Art Festival, where they performed on the Saturday night Main Stage to enthusiastic response and was the closing concert at the Goderich Celtic Roots Festival this year.
The band took their annual Christmas show to Alberta last year and performed in British Columbia with the Vancouver Island Symphony this past St. Patrick’s Day. They have performed on the same bill with Loreena McKennitt, Ashley MacIsaac, Trent Severn, Madison Violet, The Young’uns and many more.
The band has released four CDs to date: Latitude (2016), Rant Maggie Rant (2013), Frost & Fire: A Celtic Christmas Celebration (2011) and World’s Edge (2009).