Saturday, October 15, 2011

Review Of Ann Scott Concert In Dungarvan Town Hall Theatre

Sunday night it was back down the road to 'Storytelling Southeast' in Fungarvan. Before Ann Scott took to the stage I had a chat with Bo Mandeville (a handle that would have to gain him entry into a Jacklie Collins Novel of his choice ;-) I'm just jealous!) the director of the festival. He is confident that after all that happened in this the first year of the event, this is a festival that will definitely run again next year. They had over 1,200 kids involved in the schools programme, over 3,000 attendees all told, 45 events with many artists wishing to return next year, positive audience feedback, seems like a happy ever after all round! It is evident from the programme, that the festival set out to expand the traditional notion of story telling by the fireside (although this was included too) and include stories that are told through other means such as music and the visual arts. The approach and atmospehere is relaxed and inclusive; being offered complimentary glasses of wine after early arrival helps this along. I have wanted to catch Ann Scott for a while now and the Town Hall Theatre in Dungarvan on a Sunday night, in an intimate setting and with a receptive crowd, was the place to do it.

Ann is something of a slow burner in terms of exposure, critically acclaimed (twice nominated for Best Female at the Meteors) but not quite cutting through to the mainstream, which is not such a bad thing. On Sunday night, she laid out the stories beautifully and the subtle, considered use of electronic-do-hickery complimented her delicate guitar and sweet sweet voice perfectly. I can't remember exactly where I read it, but there's a tribe somewhere in Afghanistan (let's hope they're still there) that believe that the thing that makes us fall in love and find a spiritual connection, is to be found not in pheromones or appearance, but in the voice. If there's truth in this, Ann Scott is leaving a string of broken hearts in her wake in the same way the parish bus leaves empty beer cans after it on the way to a Munster Final in Thurles (properly disposed of, of course, but crumpled, sacrificed willingly and in large quantities none the less ;-) ). Ann described, early in her career, hoping that one of her songs, 'Hot Day', would bring her fame and fortune, as every time the sun would shine, DJ's all over the country would be reaching for it. She soon realised that you are more likely to aqua-plain your way to a gig down the M9, than experience fame and fortune through penning solar powered serenades. I'm just glad she has good tyres and a steady hand on the tiller.

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