Magical Strings Announces 2013 Celtic Yuletide Concerts in Its 35th Year of Performances

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In its 35th year of annual holiday performances, acclaimed family performing group Magical Strings announces its 2013 schedule of Celtic Yuletide concerts across Puget Sound -- from Seattle to Tacoma, Bellevue, Kingston, and more.

For many in the Northwest, it wouldn't be the holidays without the rippling harps, dulcimers, and other lush Celtic sounds of acclaimed family ensemble Magical Strings. The tradition continues this year, as Magical Strings announces its 35th triumphant year of annual Celtic Yuletide Concerts taking place throughout Puget Sound in December 2013! This year’s schedule includes the Seattle Concert at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 14 (Seattle Town Hall, 1119 – 8th Avenue), with the Tacoma Concert the night before on Friday, December 13 (at Urban Grace Church, 902 Market Street), plus several other notable Northwest locations including Kingston, Kent, Mount Vernon, Bellevue, Portland, and Leavenworth.

At 35 years of annual holiday performances, the group is now well into three generations of performers, mirroring the generations of Northwest audiences who have enjoyed the group’s music and stories each year without fail. Each Christmas season, the grown Boulding children (now adults ages 42 to 31) return back to the Seattle area to join in the performances and festivities -- once debuting as elves and a fairy princess, they’re now scientists, builders/designers, and concertmasters, and have in turn brought forth a third generation including six grandchildren (ages 5-13) who are just as intensely involved in music and dance.

Featuring the lyrical, joyful sounds of Celtic harps, hammered dulcimers, violins, cello, whistles, concertina, percussion and more, each Celtic Yuletide performance is more than a concert – it’s a holiday gala of Celtic-inspired song, dance, theater and storytelling. The concerts are staged annually by three generations of the multitalented Boulding family and special guests as the perfect holiday event for young and old. Each Celtic Yuletide Concert offers lovely and delicate Celtic renditions of classic carols, soulful seasonal original compositions, and dance, juggling and storytelling. The audience even takes part in the festivities, with an invitation to join a processional through the aisles, or by singing along to traditional carols as “All Through the Night” beautifully closes out the evening.

For its 2013 Celtic Yuletide concerts, Magical Strings will be joined by the Tara Academy of Irish Dance (featuring world-class Irish dancers who have won competitions in Ireland), with sweetly poignant Irish songs from acclaimed vocalist Colleen Raney with Dublin-born guitarist Colm MacCárthaigh, Canadian fiddler Jocelyn Pettit, and Matt Jerrell with his impeccable percussion, all creating a remarkable celebration to kindle the light of Yuletide, better than ever in its 35th year! Boulding daughter Brittany will offer a dazzling violin solo in Seattle as well.

2013 Ticket Pricing (Seattle, Tacoma and Kingston):

Tickets are available now, online at, or via 1-800-838-3006. Advance tickets are $20 for adults, $12 for children (12 and under) for general seating; and $28, all seats, Reserved Section. For General Admission at the door, pricing is $22 for adults and $14 for children (12 and under).

2013 Concert Schedule, Information and Show Listings
(With Venues, Contacts, Tickets and More)

December 1: Kingston
Time: Sunday, 3:00 p.m.
Location: Redeemer United Methodist Church (9900 NE Shorty Campbell Rd)
Tickets: 1-800-838-3006 or

December 8: Kent
Time: Sunday, 3:00 p.m.
Location: Kent-Meridian Performing Arts Center (10020 SE 256th St.)
Tickets: 253-856-5050 or:

December 13: Tacoma
Time: Friday, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Urban Grace Church (902 Market St.)
Tickets: or 1-800-838-3006

December 14: Seattle
Time: Saturday, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Town Hall (1119 - 8th Ave)
Tickets: , 1-800-838-3006

December 15: Mount Vernon
Time: Sunday, 3:00 p.m.
Location: The Lincoln Theatre (712 S 1st St.)
Information: (360) 336-8955, Tickets:

December 16: Bellevue
Time: Monday, 7:00 p.m.
Location: Theater at Meydenbauer (11100 NE 6th St.)

December 18: Portland
Time: Wednesday, 7:30 p.m.
Location: Alberta Rose Theatre (3000 NE Alberta
Tickets: or 503-764-4131

December 21: Leavenworth
Time: Saturday, 8:00 PM
Location: The Snowy Owl Theater
Tickets: or 877-265-6026 (Information)

About Magical Strings:

Philip and Pam Boulding founded Magical Strings in 1978, the same year they began the Celtic Yuletide Concerts with their family. They have performed throughout the U.S., Canada, Ireland and Japan, toured and recorded with Dan Fogelberg, appeared on Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion,” and recorded 18 albums on four labels. Often called the “Von Trapps of the Northwest” by local media, their love of music is embraced by all five of their grown children, who return each year to join the band for the final weekend of Yuletide Concerts. Their son Brenin’s soulful cello leads many performances, while his children Rowan (a brilliant Irish and ballet dancer) and Haydn (a budding percussionist at age 5) are working up a spectacular duet routine with drum and foot-percussion for this year. Daughter Brittany, a virtuoso violinist recently married and settled in Seattle, is Concertmaster of the Auburn Symphony and Northwest Sinfonietta, is Associate Concertmaster of Pacific Northwest Ballet, and performs frequently with the Seattle Symphony. She is also a member of the Finisterra Trio.

Philip and Pam also design and build Celtic harps, run the School of Magical Strings, and host the Magic Hill Summer Harp Camp, and Summer Fairy School on their beautiful 5-acre home overlooking the Puget Sound. Learn more about Magical Strings at, on Facebook at, or on Twitter at @Magical_Strings.

About Colleen Raney:

Portland’s Colleen Raney is among the best young Celtic singers of her generation, inspired by the music of her childhood, both as a member of the multi-talented Raney family, and alongside Magical Strings. With a gorgeous voice accompanied by some of the best acoustic musicians in the Northwest, Colleen breathes new life into the old songs. Collaborator and master guitarist Colm MacCárthaigh often plays in duet with Colleen, and they toured extensively in the United States and Ireland following the release of their acclaimed album, Cuan, in late 2011. Dublin born MacCárthaigh is an in-demand session guitarist and bouzouki player who has played with musicians worldwide including Seattle luminaries Tom Creegan, Dale Russ and others—and he joins Magical Strings Celtic Yuletide for the third time. Raney is currently touring her new CD Here This is Home, which was recorded in Ireland with top Irish traditional musicians. Learn more at

About Jocelyn Pettit:

Jocelyn Pettit is a vibrant fiddler, stepdancer, singer, and composer from Canada's West Coast, who met Philip and Pam while performing on the Celtic Music Cruise Alaska, last June. Leading her band with original, contemporary and traditional repertoire, Jocelyn was a Canadian Folk Music Award Nominee in 2010 for “World Artist of the Year” and “Young Performer of the Year,” and her high-energy, uplifting performances have delighted audiences across Canada, the USA, Scotland, and Malaysia.

Press Contact Information (NOT FOR PRINT):

To promote their 35th year of annual Celtic Yuletide Concerts across the Northwest, Philip and Pam Boulding are currently available for in-studio appearances, performances and interviews.

For further information, photos, complimentary press admission to the shows, or for review copies of their newest albums via MP3 or CD, please call: (253) 857-3716 or (253) 857-6402, e-mail Angela Mitchell at News [at] or contact Info(at)magicalstrings(dot)com.

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Angela Mitchell
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