“Larry Kirwan is a rock and roll poet with a deep appreciation of his roots.” -- Rosanne Cash
“By the end of the evening, the audience is up, cheering and stamping. In Hard Times Mr. Kirwan has not only delivered a knockout entertainment, he’s done a public service, reacquainting us with the Foster songbook and the striving, teeming America for which it was written.”- - New York Times
IRELAND – A HISTORY IN SONG is a new and exciting one-man show by Larry Kirwan that combines his 25 years experience leading Black 47
with his parallel careers as playwright, author, journalist and radio host.
Through a mix of storytelling, acting, and singing, Irish history comes roaring to life on stage. Kirwan explores the roots of the Irish/British conflict from1169 to the recent “Troubles” in a frank and often comic tour-de-force; he places special emphasis on emigration to the USA and life in New York’s Five Points as Irish immigrants and African-Americans create modern pop culture and tap dancing to the music of Stephen Foster. You’ll also meet Dermot McMurrough “the wife-stealer” who caused the English invasion, Elizabeth 1 the “Virgin Queen,” James Connolly, Michael Collins, Bernadette Devlin McAliskey and a host of other unforgettable characters.
IRELAND – A HISTORY IN SONG will include classic Kirwan songs such as James Connolly, The Big Fellah, Livin’ in America, as well as extracts from his 16 plays and 5 published books. This is a seamless story designed to entertain, excite and educate. A riveting performer, Kirwan holds audiences spellbound with his intensity, insightfulness and wit. He’ll also weave in songs from his acclaimed Broadway-bound musical, Hard Times, and will conclude the evening with Funky Ceili, 40 Shades of Blue and other hits from the rollicking side of the Black 47 catalogue
More on Larry Kirwan:
Larry Kirwan is one of the most popular performers/personalities in Irish-America. He was the founder, composer and lead singer of Black 47 about whom Time Magazine raved: Finally. Rock ‘n’ Roll that means something again. The band’s 25-years career – recently chronicled in the documentary Fanatic Heart - included 2,500 gigs, 15 CDs, and appearances on most major TV shows including Letterman, Leno, O’Brien & Fallon.
Kirwan also hosts Celtic Crush on SiriusXM, writes a column for the Irish Echo, and is president of Irish American Writers & Artists. His songs have been featured in many movies and recent editions of Sons of Anarchy and Gossip Girl, and are often used in college and high school history classes. His latest book, A History of Irish Music, not only illuminates the music but links it to the social and political changes of the last 75 years in Ireland.
Ireland – A History in Song “is a powerful new solo show full of fire and vision” by Larry Kirwan, named one of the Top Fifty Most Interesting New Yorkers by The Daily News.