BRIGIT'S WELL IN CONCERT WITH SPECIAL GUEST, CELLIST KRIS YENNEY
Saturday, February 27, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
at Valley Presbyterian Church, Fireside Room, 945 Portola Road, Portola Valley, CA
Suggested donation $10 / $25 Family at the door --- Please bring food and drink to share

 

Brigit's Well has been captivating Southern California audiences for over twenty years with their elegant, acoustic arrangements of traditional Celtic music. The duo is composed of two versatile musicians: Barbary Grant on vocals, Irish harp, piano, and fretted dulcimer, and Aimee Aul on flute, backing vocals, recorder, and pennywhistle. Their musical collaboration as well as their friendship began in the mid 1980's when they met as undergraduates in the Music Department at Cal State Fullerton. Since that time they have moved from classical repertoire to the rich heritage of traditional Celtic music. 

One of the treats about a Brigit's Well performance is listening to the many pieces sung in Irish, Scots Gaelic and Manx. Barbary began studying these languages in the mid 1990s as she was researching and arranging music for the duo's self-titled debut CD.   "Taking the time to learn lyrics in their native languages shows my respect for this music and its heritage," she explains. "And we want to be taken seriously by even the most hardcore Celtic-music lovers." Barbary's efforts won her first place in the sean nůs competition at the 1998 Great American Irish Fair. (Sean nůs - which means "old style" in Irish - is a highly ornamented style of traditional a cappella singing.)

"I think this music is especially approachable for Americans too," adds Aimee. "So much of our own folk music tradition comes directly from Ireland and Scotland; it's not that much of a leap for Americans to really connect emotionally to this music."


The name Brigit's Well is the duo's homage to one of the most important bridging figures between Pagan and Christian Celtic traditions. In Ireland, St. Brigit is called "the Mary of the Gael" and is second in importance only to St. Patrick. Both pagan goddess and 6th century saint, she is a matron of healing, smithcraft and poetry; she is lauded by the poets as the mistress of inspiration and prophecy. Her primacy within Britain and Ireland is marked by the many springs, wells, and rivers dedicated to her. Brigit is believed to make the world soft again after winter, by dipping her hand into waters on her Feast Day of February 1. Aimee and Barbary hope that their music will reflect Brigit's gentle inspiration and creative spirit.