Christmas Day is tomorrow. And the next day will mark exactly 14 years since Joanna and I attended a concert titled “A Scottish Christmas” at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.
We received the tickets from my brother and sister-in-law, for whom we were housesitting and spoiling their dog, Savanna Louise Rose O’Malley McPherson. Incidentally, demonstrating the far-flung and wandering nature of modern families, tomorrow will be the first time in 15 years that my parents, my siblings and I have all been in the same house on Christmas.
A preview article, under the subhead “Events at the Kennedy Center,” described the 1999 concert like this: “A SCOTTISH CHRISTMAS — Scottish fiddle champion Bonnie Rideout, guitarist Al Petteway, hammered dulcimer virtuoso Maggie Sansone, percussionist Paddy League, bagpipe soloist Mike Green, the City of Washington Pipe Band, the City of Washington Drum Corps and traditional Scottish dancers perform at this holiday concert, Dec. 26 at 7:30 in the Concert Hall.” (I added the links, and yes, I recently discovered that the same Mike Green is an expert on Asia who served in the George W. Bush White House.)
Rideout, Petteway and Sansone also did an album titled “A Scottish Christmas,” for which you can still buy a DVD. I can’t say that I remember specific songs or performers from our evening at the Kennedy Center, though remember it as a wonderful concert in a beautiful city, and a fun time with my wife. In a bit from a documentary, you can seen Sansone describe the instrument she used.
I couldn’t find video of a true Christmas song being played by Rideout, but she does participate in the recording of an album by Sansone and Ensemble Galilei titled “Ancient Noels.” The music is reminiscent of what we heard at the concert, and was an INDIE finalist for “seasonal album of the year.” Video below.