The New Century American Irish-Arts Company is a tempest of musicianship that puts the fear of jigs and reels in honest, hard-working people. Pity the ancient music reanimated by their deft fingers, and the players brought to their senses in pursuit of rapacious appetites for melody. Pray you never meet their like in an auditorium or on a festival grounds, for such fierce musicality and daring feats of footwork are certain to terrorize the pop music out of even the stoniest music lovers and adolescents.
The New Century’s performance ensemble is a collaboration between Irish traditional musicians, step dancers, and sean-nós dancers, which serves as a laboratory for creating new artistic work rooted in tradition, and reviving music and dance from printed collections. Born out of an Irish-American musical heritage that stretches as far back as the Revolutionary War, the New Century forges performances that shed light on the genius of traditional art, its beauty, and its unique ability to—as the great accordionist Joe Cooley said—bring people to their senses.