Harrigan’s Pub at Lakeland Performing Arts Center in Littleton opens again for a St. Patrick’s Day cabaret celebration this weekend.
The show features a number of local cabaret singers that will take on numbers that most American Irish will know from celebrating in the United States, like “Glocca Morra,” “When Irish Eyes Are Smiling,” and “The Rose of Tralee.”
According to show director Jim Hogan, “Of course, ‘Danny Boy’ will be performed, which isn’t considered an Irish song in Ireland.”
Hogan said that traditional Irish tunes like “Carlton Weavers,” “The Night Visiting Song,” and “For Ireland’s Sake” will also be performed.
“A lot of the songs are set to the same or similar melodies. We have more poets than we have musicians, so we use a lot of the music and put different words to it,” said Hogan. “Some are written by Americans, but written in a traditional, noisy way.”
Hogan said that the theatre has been hosting the show since 2010, starting on the main stage and then moving to the cabaret after it was built.
“What I had in mind was a pub where everyone comes in and you know many of the songs, so you join in and yell out,” said Hogan. “I think we’ve been able to capture that here in the cabaret.”
Hogan also scheduled Irish dancers to come and perform for the sixth year.
“They were girls when they first started coming here to dance, and now they are young ladies,” said Hogan.
The cabaret is set up for 65 guests, and Hogan said they have sold out the past few years.
“We had 70 people last year. They were calling and said they were OK with standing room,” he said.
The two-part show usually fills about two hours with a brief intermission between sets featuring Sallye Duncan on piano, Lewis Fields on guitar, Gabrielle Long on guitar and violin, and Diane Colin playing the fife and penny whistle. Many of the pub singers from previous years will be returning including Moira Underwood, Les Everhart, and Brady Martin.
Hogan said it is not a sit down and listen to the performance; it is as much as a pub as if you were in a pub. People get up and know how to do the dances and join the girls in the troupe.
“We certainly encourage everyone to sing,” he said. “We have chorus music on the tables.”
Shows are on March 13 and 14, this weekend only. Doors open and shepherd’s pie will be served starting at 6:30 p.m., and entertainment begins at 7:30 p.m. Shepherd’s pie, prepared by Chef Yvonne Hoffman, is $10 a plate, and show tickets are $16 for adults. Tickets are limited, and this show does sell out.
Lakeland is at 411 Mosby Ave., Littleton, N.C.
For reservations, call 252-586-3124.