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Happy Christmas 2018! from the Cáca Milis Cabaret

We had a wonderful Christmas Cabaret at The Wexford Arts Centre on Friday 14th, and thanks to all who braved the bad weather to come out and support us.  Here is a gallery from the night, and please scroll down for some more on this event, with all details on the performers who took part.  (Don’t mind the gap – it’s just WordPress doing our head in!)

New original music, spoken word, dance and classic cabaret: it was all at the Cáca Milis Cabaret, Friday, 14 December at 8:30pm at The Wexford Arts Centre, with hostess Helena Mulkerns and pianoman Josh Johnston.

Our special guest was Carol Keogh, singer-songwriter extraordinaire who came on board last minute to deliver a stellar performance, showcasing some of her brand new work as well as performing Joni Mitchell’s classic “River” and “Asylum Harbour” by Josh Johnston. Watch out for more work under her new moniker, “The Wicc” in 2019.

Our literary guest was renowned author and poet Mary O’Donnell. Her body of work includes four short story collections, five novels and seven poetry books and her most recent book, “Empire” was richly praised by the Irish Times. In festive spirit, she read from the experimental poetic suite “Spiderwoman’s Third Avenue Rhapsody” and some of her more experimental work. Her latest book, “Empire” is out now from Arlen House.

With a very special performance of original music, we welcomed first time guest Simon Quigley, who whose music is eclectic and broad-reaching. Joining him to sing on a new piece themed on migrant issues was Katherine Atkinson, who has been part of the cabaret before, performing with Alice Jago. Both Wexford based, Simon is a composer, arranger and pianist and Katherine is a performer, musician and cultural practitioner Katherine works in the field of public engagement with the arts.

The man with guitar was Gordan Patrick Barry, one of Wexford’s most exciting singer songwriters, who delivered some Southeastern soul with an American gothic flavour. In 2017 he released his debut album The Best Way To Kill a Monster. Recorded both in Ireland and the US and mixed by legendary Seattle Producer Steve Fisk (who was behind the early recordings of Nirvana, Soundgarden and more), his most recent single, ‘Old Fashioned Morphine’ is out now.

In dance, Ellina Sharmkovskaya, made a welcome return to the cabaret with dance partner the amazing Mr James McManus – not only a Tango Master, but a decorated veteran from WW2! Both are part of Tango Waterford and Tango Wexford, and we were particularly honoured to have James along, who – aged 99 and still dancing – is an absolute inspiration to us all.

There was yuletide cheer, a full bar, mince pies and more in the inimitable spirit of the Cáca Milis Cabaret – an anniversary of sorts, since we first appeared on the WAC stage just before Christmas 2008 to announce a new “arts cabaret” quirkily called “Cáca Milis”. We want to say a special thank you to Elizabeth Whyte, director of the Wexford Arts Centre, as well as all the team at WAC for giving the Cabaret a home stage over the years – we couldn’t have done it without you, and here’s to another decade starting in 2019!

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