Celtic story telling in Peel

TWO of the UK’s most accomplished storytellers, Nick Hennessey and Simon Heywood, will be performing at Peel Centenary Centre on Saturday. (I wish I could see this.)

They will bring a new piece of storytelling and music for adults, with special relevance for audiences in the Isle of Man due to the story’s connection with the Celtic sea god Manannan mac Lir, on what will be the final night of a tour. The Middle Yard is an evening of music and storytelling based on an ancient story about one of Ireland’s greatest heroes, Lugh Lamfhota.

The event, which is presented by the Isle of Man Arts Council, features music on harp and guitar and original songs in a folk music-style blended with a story of family loyalty, ambition, war and a magical quest.

The story has been passed down through oral traditions since the earliest times.

It was written down in the 11th Century and has been re-imagined by these two storytellers who are steeped in Irish mythology and its evocative stories.

The tale has particular relevance for the Isle of Man, as Nick Hennessey, one of the storyteller/creators explained:

In mythology, the name Man originated from Manannan, the sea god. Manannan is the foster father to Lugh, the central character of our story. His impact is felt throughout the story and he could even be said to be the motivating force behind all of the action. The story follows Lugh as he returns to Ireland with the heavy weight of prophecy on his shoulders. He is said to be the only man who can save his people from a tyrant king, although as the story evolves he gets perilously close to becoming a tyrant himself.

Three brothers are also at the heart of the action, sent on a magical sea quest to the four corners of this world and the edges of the next, to atone for a murder and satisfy Lugh’s demands.

Sounds great doesn’t it? I wonder how much it would cost to get them over here? IOMToday