The Trinity Dance Company Band
Katie is a multi-talented classically trained violinist, fiddle player and Irish dancer born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She was of the city’s top champion dancers and was highly ranked on a regional, national, and international level. As a violinist, she participated in many of the Pittsburgh area’s well regarded youth symphonies throughout her childhood and teenage years. After graduating college from the University of Notre Dame with a double major in Accounting and Psychology, she moved to Chicago, where her artistic career continued to blossom. On a local level, she worked as a lead instructor at the Trinity Academy of Irish Dance and has performed with some of the world’s finest Irish traditional musicians, such as John Williams, Dennis Cahill, Kathleen Keane and Maurice Lennon.
Katie is passionate about playing music for Irish dancers, and has accompanied many touring companies across the United States, Europe, and Asia.
Katie is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Arts Management at Carnegie Mellon University located in Pittsburgh, PA, and recently released her debut solo fiddle album “Between Worlds”. For more information on Katie, visit www.katiegrennan.com.
Hailing from a family of bush pilots in Fairbanks, Alaska, Caitlin Warbelow is a fiddler/violinist and entrepreneur currently residing in Brooklyn. Caitlin began her studies at age three in the Boston Suzuki program, and went on to win honors from the National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts and the National Suzuki Conference, as well as scholarships at the Meadowmount School (where she studied with Sally Thomas of Juilliard), Boston University, and Columbia University. In the folk and traditional realms, she holds championship titles at the New England Fiddle Championship and the Fleadh Cheoil (All-Ireland Competition).
In 2014, Caitlin became the violinist/fiddler for Riverdance’s new production, “Heartbeat of Home”, as well as a substitute violinist for Sting’s new musical on Broadway, “The Last Ship”. Caitlin has toured and performed with Cherish the Ladies, Mick Moloney and the Green Fields of America, The Brock McGuire Band, Michael Londra and Celtic Fire, The Prodigals, and The Mickey Finns, among many others. Known as something of a musical chameleon, Caitlin performs, records, and teaches extensively in NYC and around the country in a variety of genres including Irish traditional and rock, country and bluegrass, Texas swing and contest fiddling, and on occasion returns to her roots as a classical violinist.
An in-demand teacher with a unique self-developed curriculum blending classical technique and theory with folk music’s oral tradition and styles, Caitlin teaches students of all ages and abilities out of her NYC studio, at festivals nationwide, and via Skype. She specializes in teaching absolute beginners, adult amateurs, and children who wish to supplement their classical studies. In addition to her large private teaching studio, she is on the faculty at Manhattan’s Irish Arts Center and is an artistic coordinator and guest artist at the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival and the Far North Fiddle Festival.
Caitlin recently recorded and produced “Manhattan Island Sessions”, a live recording of traditional Irish music in NYC pubs. It features fifteen young traditional musicians, including Isaac Alderson (Celtic Crossroads), Dan Lowery and Alan Murray (The Young Wolftones), Kyle Sanna (Nuala Kennedy Trio), Anna Colliton (The Forge), Johnny Cuomo, Marta Cook, and Ryan McGiver. The CD was nominated for a 2012 Independent Music Award.
Caitlin received a masters degree in Urban Planning from Columbia University at the age of 24, and double bachelors degrees from Boston University in Violin Performance and Anthropology at the age of 20. When she doesn’t have a violin in her hands, Caitlin pursues her many entrepreneurial endeavors and travels the world in search of cute animals, delicious food, long naps, five-mile runs, and dubious adventures and curiosities of all sorts.
Paul is a Northern Irish musician and artist. He has been playing drums since age 5 and specializes in playing the Irish frame drum, the bodhran (pronounced boron). He is the founder of the online bodhran community and resource Bodojo
Paul has played around the world as a member of the band Different Drums of Ireland where he has made and plays the traditional thunderous Lambeg drums from Northern Ireland as well as the African Djembe, drum set and all types of world percussion.
Paul is very proud to have known Founder Mark Howard and the Trinity Family for over 10 years through Different Drums. Paul joined the international touring cast in 2012 and has worked on tours to Europe and twice to Japan.
We were joined by Cleek on the Trinity Irish Dance Company 2014 tour to Japan (video)
From Virginia but now living in New York City, Cleek holds degrees in Music and German Studies from the University of Virginia. As a teen, he was mentored by the legendary fiddler Brendan Mulvihill. Regular visits to the home of Paddy Reynolds, the great Longford fiddler who settled in New York, helped to intensify Cleek’s interest in the fiddle playing of the 78 rpm era.In 2005, the year of Paddy’s death, he co-produced the release of archival recordings of the late Reynolds’ surviving work. Cleek was a featured musician on The Raw Bar, a documentary on Irish music that aired on RTE 1 in Ireland, and most recently on Féilte, a program on Irish music in America, for the Irish language station TG4.
Also an interpreter of Appalachian stringband music, his collaborative recording with the old time fiddler Rhys Jones, called The Girl Who Broke My Heart, was released to great acclaim. In the summer of 2010 their band, Bigfoot, garnered first place in the traditional stringband competition at the prestigious Clifftop Appalachian Music Festival. He also fiddles and flatfoots in the percussive dance ensemble Footworks, a group that specializes in southern music and dance forms, under the direction of superhumans Eileen Carson and Mark Schatz. Cleek also works closely with composers and musicians from outside of the traditional music community, combining perspectives in search of new possibilities.
The New York composer Daniel Thomas Davis was recently commissioned to create a new chamber work for Cleek, Anonymous 4’s Jacqueline Horner, and the Sonnambula viol consort, slated for a Spring 2013 premiere. He is also working with the uilleann piper Ivan Goff and the sean nos singing master Iarla O’Lionaird on a new interpretation of John Cage’s Roaratorio.
His fiddling has graced many stages, large and small, with highlights including Orchestra Hall, Chicago (2004), Shetland Folk Festival, UK (2005), The Kennedy Center, DC (2006), Maryland Hall, MD (2009), Geneva Arena, SUI (2010), Lyceum Theater, NY (2011).
Uilleann Pipes, Flute & Whistle
Brian grew up in Jersey City, New Jersey in an Irish family. His interest in Traditional Irish Music was first piqued at the age of twelve after listening to the session recording, Music at Matt Molloy’s and later with his father’s trad vinyl collection.
His mother found him initial tin whistle lessons with Maura Vesey and finally flute lessons with Mike Rafferty of Ballinakill, East County Galway. Mike taught Brian the bulk of his music and would become Brian’s biggest influence and source of encouragement. In addition to many tunes, Mike also taught Brian about the many musicians who came out of East Galway and the distinctive traits of that regional style. Brian was also influenced by Willie Kelly and Patrick Ourceau, two of the greatest exponents of Traditional Irish Fiddle Playing in the United States. They shared a love and common respect for the music Mike played as well as the music of Jack Coen who would also later influence Brian’s playing. In addition to these four men, Brian has also found inspiration in recordings of Joe Cooley, Bobby Casey, and Matt Molloy.
Brian has taught at the Chris Langan weekend in Toronto and at Irish Week at the Augusta Heritage Center in Elkins, West Virginia. He also performs and teaches with Patrick Ourceau every year at the Whit’s End Flute and Fiddle Weekend in Orillia, Ontario.
Guitar & Vocals
Originally from Killarney in the South West of Ireland, singer-songwriter Brendan O’ Shea moved to the United States in the late 90′s. Since then, he was become a veteran of New York City’s songwriter scene and has released two albums which have garnered praise from critics and press around the world.
Irish music magazine HotPress rated his last release Be Here Still an 8 1/2 out of 10 and XM Radio’s Mike Morrone called it one of his “Favorite records of the year.” Brendan’s songs can also be heard in such films as Ron Howard’s Academy Award nominated film Backdraft and the wildly successful Karen Gehres documentary Begging Naked.
In addition to headlining his own shows in both the United States and Europe, Brendan has embarked on two tours of Japan in collaboration with the Trinity Dance Troupe as well as sharing stages with his contemporaries The Frames, The Swell Season, Cowboy Junkies, 10,000 Maniacs, Elliott Smith, and Interpol to name but a few.
In 2007 Brendan became a founding member of Fairplay Collective, a unique endeavor in which songwriters have come together to support and promote each other’s individual projects as independent artists. In 2008 Brendan ,Pete and friend Karl Geary (Sin-e) began hosting a successful Sunday night concert series in NYC’s East Village called the Scratcher Sessions which features musicians from around the world. With or without a guitar in hand, Brendan O’Shea excels at drawing people in.
Brendan is currently writing songs for his fourth full length release to follow up from his 2011 release Songs From A Tenement.