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|Night of the Celts celebrates heritage with music, dance|
The city of West Monroe and the West Monroe Chamber of Commerce will host Night of the Celts April 17 at the West Monroe Convention Center.
The event will include an evening of music, dancing and celebration of the Celtic heritage.
Night of the Celts is a prelude to the Northeast Celtic Festival, which will be held in West Monroe later this year.
"The Celtic Festival is a wonderful family event and we are all excited to have it in West Monroe," said West Monroe Mayor Dave Norris. "Working with the West Monroe chamber, I know this event will continue to grow year after year and bring many tourists to our city. The event coming up on April 17 is just a taste of what we can expect from the festival."
Since music and dancing are a big part of the Celtic heritage, Night of the Celts will feature several Irish talents.
Mairtin de Cogain, an entertainer from Ireland, will be a featured artist. He is a professional actor, singer, dancer and story-teller who has entertained Irish culture fans around the world.
Cogain's latest accomplishment includes a part in the award-winning film, 'The Wind that Shakes the Barley," which was released in the United States in March 2007. He is a two-time national Irish story-telling champion and the lead singer of the world-traveling traditional music group, The Fuschia Band.
Also appearing will be Irish artist Jimmy Crowley, who has been a central figure in the Irish entertainment scene since 1977. Crowley is an accomplished poet, author and playwright.
Legacy, a long-time local favorite, also will perform.
Doyle Jeter, who helped arrange for the entertainment, made sure to include Legacy in the event.
"Legacy draws its core members from the accomplished Celtic musicians in our area," Jeter said. "Their arrangements are complex and challenging and their performances are always energetic."
Legacy sometimes plays as a trio, full band of five and even a seven-piece when other favorite guest musicians and dancers are in town.
West Monroe chamber president Mary Ann Newton said the music being offered for the event will be performed by some of the top Celtic musicians in the world.
"We wanted this event to set the tone for the Celtic festival, so in addition to the music, there will be dancing, kilts, and plenty of Celtic style foods to sample," she said.
Dancer Joni Muggivan, owner of the Muggivan School of Irish Dance in Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Mandeville, will be on hand demonstrating Irish dancing.
Muggivan was the first Louisiana dancer to compete at the world championships in Ireland.
"For anyone of Irish, Scottish or Welsh descent, this will be their heritage coming right to their door step. It is an exciting cultural event for everyone," Newton said.
The Night of the Celts will be held from 6-9 p.m. April 17 at the West Monroe Convention Center. Tickets are $25 per person and include hors d'oeuvres.
For more information or for tickets, contact the West Monroe Convention Center at 396-5000.