celtic harps and monkey chants

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I’m so fortunate to be in this city and to have friends to tell me about great cultural opportunities that I would otherwise have missed.

Friend #1 told me about Celtic music performances (free!) at St. Andrews Episcopal Church. So we went and heard beautiful music featuring harps, fiddles, vocals, and pipes. Men in kilts, of course. It was all sung in Gaelic, but the performers usually provided a summary of each song before it started, and most seemed to be about heartache and lament. Local musician Seumas Gagne seemed heavily involved in these performances.

Today Friend #2 suggested we go to the Ramayana at ACT. Three hours and two intermissions and it never felt too long. It was colorful, the story was nicely framed, and thanks to last minute “rush” tickets, admission was extremely cheap for great seats. The last time I saw this story was in a theater under the giant towers in Kuala Lumpur and I didn’t understand a word of it. This one was in English and I was delighted that when Hanuman the monkey appeared, I heard what sounded very much like Balinese monkey chanting being played in the background.

Some Celtic music randomly plucked from YouTube:

Some kecak chanting:

The Petronas Towers, 452 meters high. Flickr photo by UweBKK.

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