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April/May 2010




IMA Artist Spotlight:
Kevin Locke

Dance News:
Darrah Carr Honored

Concert News:
Following up on a Fireside Ceili

Home Away From Home: Tommy Sands

New Online Brochures
Babatunde Lea

Next Month

About Ixtlan

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February 2010
Boys of the Lough christen a US ‘Castle’ + Presenters' Feedback: Kevin Locke Native Dance Ensemble + Current Tours

January 2010
“Our Musical World” Receives Silver Medal + Celtic Connections Chooses Tommy Sands + Beppe Gambetta Spotlight Showcase in Review

December 2009
Kevin Locke Wins Record of the Year + Harmonia Debuts New Program + New online brochures + New Touring Program: Ostroushko & Gambetta + Dirty Linen Features Tommy Sands + more

October 2009
Kevin Locke nominated for Nammys + more on Kevin Locke + Anthony Brown + Darrah Carr Dance + more

August 2009
Kevin Locke receives ISMA nomination + New CD from Boys of the Lough + New winter holiday brochures now online + more

August 2008
Kevin Locke releases Earth Gift CD + Guitar master Beppe Gambetta joins Ixtlan roster + more

July 2008
Kevin Locke Native Dance Ensemble awarded NEFA grant + more

June 2008
Tommy Sands releases Let the Circle be Wide CD + Peter Ostroushko releases Peter Goes to the Circus CD + Kevin Locke releases Seven Fires CD + more

May 2008
Tommy Sands and Kevin Locke NDE showcase at Arts Northwest + more

April 2008
Ixtlan creates new education division + more

Independent Music Awards Artist Spotlight: Kevin Locke
Kevin Locke is featured as the Spotlight artist for the 9th Annual Independent Music Awards. Kevin was one of five World Traditional Album Nominees for his current release, Earth Gift. Read the spotlight interview (click here)


Dance News

Darrah Carr honored as one of Irish Echo’s 40 under 40

The USA's largest and most widely read Irish American paper, The Irish Echo, announced Darrah Carr as one of its top 40 Irish under 40 in March. Professors, attorneys, songwriters and more were part of the lauded list of awardees. As the Creative Director of Darrah Carr Dance and professor of Dance at Hofstra University, Darrah represents one of a handful of honored “new Irish stars” spotlighted by the paper.

Darrah is no stranger to distinction. She was also named one of the “Top 100 Irish Americans of the Year” by Irish America Magazine. Active for over a decade in both the Irish and modern dance communities as a choreographer, dancer, educator, and writer, Darrah still wants more. In June, she begins doctoral coursework that will lead to a PhD in dance.

You can read Darrah’s impressive listing of achievements and projects as the leader of Darrah Carr Dance in the Irish Echo’s ‘40’ issue here.

Darrah Carr Dance performs in New York City throughout the year. The troupe tours the Midwest and Great Lakes region in March of 2011.


Concert News

Following up on a Fireside Ceili
Some audiences just don’t participate. But to Tommy Sands that notion is a myth. Like the unicorn. The roomful of people at the second “Concert at the Castle” were stomping feet, laughing, and singing...and there were harmonies.

And they didn’t stop when the concert ended. Crowded around the huge fireplace, acoustic laments and jigs filled the castle home well into the witching hour. It wasn't until 4am that the Castle was silenced.

Rick and Shanan Jackson, with the help of Ixtlan Artists created the Concerts at the Castle series. First was Boys of the Lough, six days later was the raucous concert event with Tommy Sands and his Irish Band. As if the intrigue of seeing a unicorn wasn't enough, the concert raised money for a local charity: Operation Safety Net. The Boys of the Lough concert also contributed donations to the charity. Ixtlan Artists will continue to be a partner in the upcoming Castle events.

A Home Away From Home: Reno, Nevada

Tommy Sands travels all over the world to bring his music and message for peace. But since he has his own day in Reno, Nevada, he tries to visit there whenever possible. This past March, the Honorary Consul General of Ireland, Dr. Bernard Brady, arranged for Tommy and his Irish Band to be the special guest at a private reception for members and families of the Honorary Irish Consulate in Reno. Tommy and his Irish Band ended up playing a few songs to end the evening in true Irish fashion and with high acclaim.

“The performance was wonderful; he never misses a beat,” Brady says. “Everyone was very impressed.”

The Irish consulate in Reno is one of only five Honorary Consulate Generals in the US. Since the 19th century the Irish have made a significant contribution in all walks of life in Nevada and today Irish-Americans are well represented at the highest levels in Nevada's business, political, legal, academic and cultural life.

Not only is Tommy connected to Reno through his Irish heritage, but also in songwriting. Tommy uses his music to build bridges of all sorts, and Reno is no exception. In 2002 under the guidance and prodding of Jill Berryman and the Sierra Arts Foundation, Tommy debuted an outreach program for underprivileged prisoners in Reno. He worked with over 70 youths, helping them to write their life stories in the form of songs. Later, a local judge would accept the songs as a plea during their trials. Moya sings the piece by one participant, a 17 year-old named Danielle, and it is often a crowd favorite at concerts. Listen to the story behind the song and Moya's performance of "Danielle" here.

For this program and for his "outstanding work as musician and ambassador for peace and understanding" the University of Nevada, Reno awarded Tommy his Honorary Doctorate in 2002. By request, Tommy even gave the Inaugural speech to a crowd of 10,000 for the university’s graduating class. (The only other Irish recipient of the Honorary Doctorate is the 1998 Nobel Peace Prize winner John Hume.) For Tommy and his Irish Band, Reno will always be a home away from home. Read more about Tommy and his programs.


New Online Brochures: Babatunde Lea

Ixtlan’s newest 60-second, click-and-read online brochures feature artist Babatunde Lea.

Using a click-interface through photos and text, the online brochures enable readers to quickly get a feel for artists and their programs. Ixtlan’s online brochures are also Web based, so there is no need to download the files to view them (although that is an option). The online brochures are easily shareable to committees and colleagues.

  • Peter Ostroushko releases new recording.
  • The Traditional Music Archives in Dublin chooses Cathal McConnell
  • Update on Tommy Sands' ongoing initiative for world peace


Ixtlan Artists Group logo

About Ixtlan Artists Group
For more than twenty years, Ixtlan Artists Group has represented virtuoso performers from Europe and the Americas who have a commitment to education and cultural diversity. Founded in 1986 under the name “Joan Sherman Artist Management,” the agency’s original mission of providing excellent folk artists has expanded to traditional world music artists who provide concert and educational experiences that open doorways to universal cultural understanding.

Each artist Ixtlan represents is a premiere talent in their idiom, and they take audiences beyond daily experience into the arena of performance virtuosity rich in cultural traditions. Ixtlan artists speak directly, not only to performance, but to making an impact, on and off the stage.

Through both stage performance and educational outreach, Ixtlan endeavors to provide a venue where performance is used as a bridge to cultural understanding, artistic awareness, educational involvement, and peaceful coexistence of shared ideas.

Ixtlan periodically publishes a digest of the latest news about the artists on its roster.