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At the Talbot  Theatre,
Whitchurch Leisure Centre


Friday December 8th 2023 at 8 pm.

A Winter Union

They sound like that moment, on Christmas eve, when the kids have gone to bed, the presents are under the tree, the fire’s just dying down, there’s pine, cinnamon and nectarine in the air, there’s excitement, anticipation and giddiness. Everything is just about to burst. Whatever that feeling is, A Winter Union is that!
Hannah Sanders has a voice that is both snowflake perfect and icicle pure. When she starts Ding Dong Merrily on High a visible chill ripples around the room, and then Rhiannon and Gilmore join in the harmonies and that Christmas Eve feeling washes over everyone.

The three voices twist and twirl together again and again – like Holly, Ivy and Mistletoe weaving around an old tree trunk – making Joni Mitchell’s River even more beautiful than ever. Jade Rhiannon, from much missed Americana/folk dynamos The Willows, is like one of those actors that help make everyone else look brilliant and then, when she’s in the spotlight, you wonder why she’s not in every film ever.
Her voice is absolutely glorious, her harmonies are fantastic and when she

sings solo the world simply melts away around her. On both Our Wassail and The Holly and The Ivy she is divine. Whilst Rhiannon and Sanders have these beautiful, crystalline voices, it is violin genius, Katriona Gilmore, that has the voice of a cosy fireside. When she sings her own Every Midnight Mile, every Christmas Eve spent with loved ones is effortlessly conjured. On the reflective Raise a Candle the others hover around her single microphone but it is her voice that reminds us that December can be tough as well as joyous. All of which just leaves Ben Savage and Jamie Roberts. They are the sellotape on the carefully wrapped presents, the extra, crucial roast potato at the feast. They hold everything together, adding acoustic guitars and yet another layer of exquisite harmonies. Roberts has an honest fierceness, bringing to mind harsh, frost hardened ground while Savage gives us a different type of winter. His is sun dappled and Los Angeles bound, with covers of songs by Townes Van Zandt and The Band balancing the chill. In amongst the glittering jewels and celebrations of winter one song stood out however. An incredible Gospel Folk version of the hymn Rise Up, Shepherd, and Follow had all five harmonising, the unmistakable power of a simple song sung with joy and passion. It was truly amazing. Seeing A Winter Union in the weeks before Christmas is starting to become a bit of a tradition. It’s one tradition that is well worth upholding. Time to deck those halls.


Where is Whitchurch Leisure Centre? Click here

Friday February 2nd 2024 at 8 pm.

The Haar

The Haar introduces the formidable singing talent of All-Ireland Scór na nÓg winner Molly Donnery combined with three of the most exciting instrumentalists on the folk and traditional music circuit: Cormac Byrne (BBC Folk Award/Show of Hands/Seth Lakeman), Adam Summerhayes, and Murray Grainger (both of the FATEA award-winning Ciderhouse Rebellion).

This is music that is not afraid to transcend borders, whilst recognisably born of the traditional music that all members have grown up with. The Haar pushes the boundaries to create a unique and compelling sound.

The origins of the band go back to a chance meeting between Adam, Cormac and Molly at a session at the Craiceann Bodhrán Festival. This resulted in an improvised performance recorded by the shipwreck of the Plassey on the west coast of Ireland. It was to become typical of the unique live reactive composition that characterises their music. With the addition of master accordionist Grainger, they entered the studio at the end of 2019 to record their first album.

Their self-titled debut, released in June 2020, is a collection of traditional Irish songs tackling love, poverty and oppression. It was heralded as a splendid balance of swirling instrumental magic and beautifully sung narratives by Folk Radio UK and garnered attention from Mike Harding who described it as absolutely amazing.


Where is Whitchurch Leisure Centre? Click here

Saturday March 9th 2024 at 8 pm.


We are delighted for the return of Megson to North Shropshire Folk. Four times nominated in the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards and double winners of the Spiral Earth Awards Megson, aka Stu & Debbie Hanna, draw heavily on their Teesside heritage to create a truly unique brand of folk music.

The husband & wife duo bring an infectious mix of heavenly vocals, lush harmonies and driving rhythmic guitars. Comprising Debs Hanna (Vocals, Whistle, Piano Accordion) and Stu Hanna (Guitar, Mandola, Banjo) Megson have gained fame on the British folk scene, not only for their arresting & intelligent song writing, but for their exquisite musicianship and northern humour. As Roots Magazine puts it ‘if you don’t like the music here then you have a problem’

2019 saw the release of their much anticipated new studio album CONTRADICSHUN gaining them even more critical acclaim including FOLK ALBUM OF THE WEEK from THE SUNDAY TIMES, “One of the albums of the year” ★★★★ from ROCK ‘N’ REEL while legendary folk broadcaster MIKE HARDING said “Megson have brought out a constant stream of absolutely stunning albums over the years and this is no exception. A cracker of an album.”


Where is Whitchurch Leisure Centre? Click here