The Kerry Boys will perform Irish ballads and Celtic style originals at Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum at Quinnipiac University, 3011 Whitney Ave., at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 27.
Pierce Campbell, of Prospect, the Connecticut state troubadour for 2007-2008, leads this popular Irish group, which has been performing together for nearly 25 years, dazzling fans of all ages from Maine to New York.
Joining Campbell on banjo is Paul Neri, of Clinton, who has performed with bluegrass jazz and rock ensembles throughout his 45-year career. With his groundbreaking trio Spacegrass, he has opened for The New Grass Revival, performed on stage with Tony Trischka and played banjo with Orchestra New England on “Rhapsody in Blue” conducted by Mitch Miller.
With four CDs to their credit, The Kerry Boys have played throughout the Northeast at Irish festivals, libraries, town concerts, arts organizations, schools, Irish pubs, clubs and fairs.
Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum is home to the world’s largest collection of visual art, artifacts and printed materials relating to the Irish Famine. The museum preserves, builds and presents its art collection in order to stimulate reflection, inspire imagination and advance awareness of Ireland’s Great Hunger and its long aftermath on both sides of the Atlantic.
The collection focuses on the famine years from 1845-52, when blight destroyed virtually all of Ireland’s potato crops for consecutive years. The crop destruction, coupled with British governmental indifference to the plight of the Irish, who at the time were part of the United Kingdom, resulted in the deaths of more than 1 million Irish men, women and children and the emigration of more than 2 million to nations around the world. This tragedy occurred even though there was more than adequate food in the country to feed its starving populace. Exports of food and livestock from Ireland actually increased during the years of the Great Hunger.
Works by noted contemporary Irish artists are featured at the museum including internationally known sculptors John Behan, Rowan Gillespie and Eamonn O’Doherty; as well as contemporary visual artists, Robert Ballagh, Alanna O’Kelly Brian Maguire and Hughie O’Donoghue. Featured paintings include several important 19th and 20th‐century works by artists such as James Brenan, Daniel MacDonald, James Arthur O’Connor and Jack B. Yeats.
The museum is open Wednesdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursdays 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sundays 1-5 p.m.