The final installment of The Mendel Center’s Hanson Theatre Living Room Series welcomes RUNA to the stage on Friday, February 23, at 7 pm.
Quickly gaining recognition as one of Irish music’s new “super-groups,” RUNA has been enchanting audiences by pushing the boundaries of Irish folk music into the Americana and roots music formats since their formation in 2008. Interweaving the haunting melodies and exuberant tunes of Ireland and Scotland with the lush harmonies and intoxicating rhythms of jazz, bluegrass, flamenco, and blues, they offer a thrilling and redefining take on traditional music.
The group has been honored internationally, winning Top Group and Top Traditional Group in the Irish Music Awards, and four Independent Music Awards including Best Live Album, Best World/Traditional Song, and Best Bluegrass Song.
RUNA consists of vocalist and step-dancer, Shannon Lambert-Ryan of Philadelphia, Dublin-born guitarist, Fionán de Barra, Cheryl Prashker of Canada on percussion, Dave Curley of Galway on mandolin, vocals, bodhrán, and step-dancing, and Maggie White of Kentucky on the fiddle.
RUNA recently released their fifth album, “RUNA: LIVE,” which was recorded at the BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown, Maryland, on Thursday, March 17, 2016. Receiving lavish praise on both sides of the Atlantic, the album has been hailed as “an incredible masterpiece” by Marcene Bronson of The Celtic Crier.
Seeking to preserve and continue a traditional culture in a modern age, RUNA creates the backbone of its signature roots sound from the musical and geographical diversity of its individually established band members. Their striving for excellence and creativity blazes a trail for the future of folk music, earning them the reputation as one of the most innovative Irish folk groups of this generation.
Local brewing favorite The Livery will offer an array of craft beers before the show and during intermission. Their craft beer creations will be available at the cash bar in the Hanson Theatre lobby. The Livery will also provide samples of their house-made, spent-grain pizza along with beers available for sampling from growlers.
The Hanson Theatre Living Room Series is a live performance experience in the intimate setting of the 250-seat Hanson Theatre. The venue is designed for maximum viewing and listening pleasure, and provides audiences with the opportunity to connect more closely with the performers and the performances.
The Hanson Theatre Living Room Series is sponsored by The Livery and the Southwestern Michigan Tourist Council.
Tickets for RUNA are on sale at www.TheMendelCenter.com, through The Mendel Center Box Office at (269) 927-8700, option 1, and in person weekdays from 10 am to 6 pm at the box office located in The Mendel Center, 2755 E. Napier Avenue, Benton Harbor. Discounts are available for seniors, students and children, active military members, and veterans.