Brian Lee Boyce
Operetta Research Center
2 March, 2017
The “All Irish” season of the Victor Herbert Renaissance Project Live! continues with a concert of music by Victor Herbert and an extra special dash of Dublin— music by the extraordinary Samuel Lover, Herbert’s maternal grandfather, the Irish music hall composer, poet, and philosopher.
Lover was a huge influence on Herbert — his 1835 novel Rory O’Moore provided the basis for the plot of Herbert’s 1917 romantic operetta Eileen, the upcoming season finale of VHRP LIVE!
The cast will perform a program of 22 songs, such as “Molly,” “Mary Came Over To Me,” and “Old Ireland Shall Be Free.” A historically notable inclusion in the concert is “The Bards of Ireland,” a song cycle of old Irish airs arranged by Herbert in 1909 for the Annual St Patrick’s Day Dinner of The Society of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, attended by U.S. President William H. Taft.
For performance details, click here.
And if you want to plan ahead, here is more information about the upcoming Eileen. The story taked place during the Irish Rebellion of 1798. A young noblewoman Eileen Mulvaney falls in love with and aids in the escape of the Irish revolutionary Barry O’Day, as the British tighten their control of Ireland.
Herbert’s unabashed love for Ireland was put onstage just as America was entering the “Great War” in 1917. The music is full of priceless gems such as “True Sons of Erin,” “The Irish Have A Great Day Tonight,” and the famous “Thine Alone.” If you’ve an Irish bone in your body, you’ll be “wearing the green” with us in this adventurous and romantic operetta!