With Mike Plunkett
Presentation times: 2pm & 4pm
PADDY HAS GONE FOR A SOLDIER
The experience of the soldiers of The Irish Brigade comes to life in a program of songs and stories that illustrate how these uprooted immigrants became American patriots. The program is based on extensive researched in period books and letters. This research uncovered songs, both familiar and little known, that show the daily camp life, opinions and political attitudes of these remarkable men, as well as the battles they waged on and off the field to be accepted in American society. The lyrics are often like news reports of battles and the soldier’s reactions to events of the period. The bravery and devotion of the men of the Irish Brigade is well known today. This program brings to light their personalities as well as their exploits. It presents the songs the men sang about their new country, about their longing for the freedom of Ireland, and the desire to return safely to their loved ones. The Irish fought in our Civil War for many reasons and these can be found in the poetry of the songs. The story of their fight for freedom in the New World is stirring and dramatic. They lived their faith and served their new country, joining “Erin’s harp and the Starry Flag” forever.
About the performer- Mike Plunkett has performed Civil War era music for many years as a member of The Libby Prison Minstrels. In addition to countless concerts and workshops he has performed at the National Museum of the Civil War in Harrisburg, Gettysburg National Park Visitor Center, Welcome America Fourth of July Celebration and the Lincoln 200 Events on Independence Mall in Philadelphia, the Windham, NY Civil War Music Festival and the New Jersey Folk Festival. His program PADDY HAS GONE FOR A SOLDIER is based on his research in first person accounts of camp life, music, and thoughts of the men of the Irish Brigade. Mike is an award-winning public school music teacher and choral director with a degree in music (guitar and choral). He is an active member of the Philadelphia Irish session scene. He presents musical programs on the Civil War and Irish-American Heritage to museums, Civil War Roundtables and schools. A CD of the songs in PADDY HAS GONE FOR A SOLDIER is in the works.