LCB Tour of Ireland, July 2009
Note: Most of the small photos are thumbnails. You can click the photo to display a larger image.
Tour gets underway!
After considerable planning by a small but enthusiastic committee, the band found itself at the Jury's Inn in Dublin. The meal for tonight was planned a short walk away at a typical Irish establishment called 'The Arlington', where we were treated to a sumptuous meal, a three piece Irish Band, as well as Irish dancing.
It was a great start to the tour. However, most of the troupe decided to turn in early, feeling somewhat tired and jet-lagged after their long flight.
Saturday July 11th
With most players still weary from their journey, they welcomed a free day in Dublin, some choosing Temple Bar, others taking an Open Bus ride. Everyone was excited to be here, and looked forward to the tour.
Sunday July 12th
Eager to get started, we headed off for the Guinness factory, where we played two sets, then all enjoyed a tour of the factory and a welcome glass of Guinness at the end.
There was not much time to rest, though, as we had another booking in the beautiful St Stephen's Green. After travelling what seemed like ages to go just a short distance, we arrived and quickly set up for our second gig for the day.
Unfortunately we'd only played a couple of pieces when the heavens opened and our audience scurried for cover.
Monday-Tuesday July 13th/14th
After a busy day we all looked forward to another free day in Dublin. That evening a rehearsal and social was planned with the St Georges Band in a church close to the centre of Dublin, and within easy reach of our accommodation. It was an interesting exercise for all of us, and we recognised a lot of the pieces in their folder.
Next morning we had to be packed and ready to leave early after our hearty Irish breakfast. We were headed for the Abbeyleix Manor Hotel, in Abbeyleix. On the way we stopped to visit Newbridge Silver where there were many interesting things to look at. Further on, we were treated to a guided tour of the National Horse Stud, a beautiful and most interesting place.
Our playout in Abbeyleix was for the Lions Club in a local church. An inspection of the venue meant a rather drastic change to the band's usual arrangement, as well as removal of a few pews. However the concert was very successful, and the crowd called for more. We were also treated to a performance of a local gospel choir.
Wednesday July 15th
Our first stop after leaving Abbeyleix was Killkenny Castle, where we were booked in for a self-guided tour, after which we wandered either around the grounds or down to the little village. The Rock of Cashel was next, an old rocky fortress at the top of a hill, and the ancient seat of the Kings of Munster - an impressive structure, still, and we listened intently as our tour guide explained its usage and history.
After leaving Cashel, we travelled on to Cork, the Republic's second largest city, where we were to spend the next four nights.
Rehearsal with St Georges Band in Dublin