Singer John McDermott and the Vancouver Island Symphony present Irish and Scottish Favourites at the Port Theatre on Saturday, March 17. (Submitted photo)

John McDermott joins the Vancouver Island Symphony for St. Patrick’s Day concerts

Performances will feature personal stories and traditional Irish ditties

John McDermott has been recording his tender, soaring renditions of Scottish and Irish ballads for a quarter century and on March 17 the Canadian tenor will join the Vancouver Island Symphony for the first time for for a pair of St. Patrick’s Day performances.

McDermott will take to the Port Theatre stage with the Nanaimo-based ensemble at 3 and 7:30 p.m. He said he’ll be leaning more on the traditional Irish repertoire, “from Galway Bay to Danny Boy to Toora-Loora-Looral.”

He calls it “an easy trip down memory lane.”

Memory lane has been on McDermott’s mind as of late. It’s been 25 years since the singer released his debut album, Danny Boy, launching his musical career. Looking back he said it’s a nice milestone to reach and even wishes he’d started sooner.

“It’s still fun doing what we do, it’s still encouraging,” he said.

“It’s a very difficult business, I know that much nowadays, but we’ve been blessed that we’ve got a great following, a great fan base and we’re able to do an annual tour.”

On March 25 McDermott will be releasing a two-DVD retrospective, covering his beginnings as a recording artists in the early-90s and including an unaired concert from around 2000.

“It was a PBS show and the record company and PBS didn’t really communicate so it was never really released,” he said.

“So I’ve managed to finally get it that I can release it, and release it along with some very early footage when I first started out.”

But McDermott is not content to dwell on the past. A new CD of Irish music is on the way that will be feature stories and personal history behind the music, as told by Irish elders.

“I look for songs that are not overdone, songs that are traditional and have a history to them,” he said.

“And I like to have a story behind the piece. Most of the pieces that I do were written for a reason.”

McDermott will be sharing those stories when he performs in Nanaimo. He said a lot of people feel deep connections to those timeless Irish ditties.

“A lot of the songs are reflective back on people’s youth and their heritage and family and there’s maybe a memory attached to someone or something or someplace.”

WHAT’S ON … The Vancouver Island Symphony presents Irish and Scottish Favourites with John McDermott at the Port Theatre on Saturday, March 17 at 3 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets range from $38 to $59, $18 for students, $5 eyeGO passes. Tickets available at the box office.



arts@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Couple collecting empties for VIU scholarships can’t pick up cans on campus anymore

Parmars have been picking up cans for 12 years; university now enforcing safety policy

Gogo’s tree farm celebrates 90th year of growing Christmas trees

Gogo Christmas tree farm has grown Christmas trees since 1929 and started U-cut business in 1984

Nanaimo’s November was much drier than normal

Region got less than one-third normal rainfall for month and 2019 trending toward driest in 10 years

Raise the curtains: New outdoor theatre coming to Parksville

A $204,000 boost comes from Island Coastal Economic Trust

VIU scholarships created in honour of grad who died in plane crash

Awards related to indigenous studies and the environment will be offered in memory of Micah Messent

Gogo’s tree farm celebrates 90th year of growing Christmas trees

Gogo Christmas tree farm has grown Christmas trees since 1929 and started U-cut business in 1984

B.C.-born hockey official talks to IIHF about switching European rule book to NHL rules

Rob Shick will represent NHL at 4th World Hockey Forum in Russia

Miller nets winner as Canucks edge Sabres 6-5 in OT

Roussel, Leivo tally two apiece for Vancouver

‘Norovirus-like’ outbreak interrupts Bantam hockey showcase in Greater Victoria

Several athletes were sent home, quarantined on the ferry

Nanaimo Clippers holding Teddy Bear Toss

BCHL team has pair of home games this weekend, including charity event Saturday, Dec. 7

$578: that’s how much your first distracted driving ticket will cost with recent premium hikes

Over 50 per cent of Canadians admitted to using phone while driving last year, according to study

Coins can add up to a merrier Christmas for kids

News Bulletin’s Coins for Kids campaign now underway

Beefs & Bouquets, Dec. 5

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail bulletinboard@nanaimobulletin.com

Kelowna man attempts to steal bait bike from RCMP parking lot

38-year-old Brian Richard Harbison is facing several charges

Most Read