"Celtic Steps: The Show" welcomed over 100 guests from Ukraine to their performance at the Killarney Racecourse in Co Kerry on April 22.
The Irish dance and music show played host to the Ukrainian group by introducing them to the magic of Irish music and culture, delighting them with a spectacular line-up of high-energy jigs and reels as performed by their world champion Irish musicians and dancers.
Sean Murphy, co-producer of Celtic Steps, commented on the night: “For many months, we’ve all watched what’s been unfolding in Ukraine with great sadness.
"A couple of weeks ago, I met a Ukrainian woman and her child at the Innisfallen Hotel and it felt like the right time to extend the hand of hospitality. I invited them and the wider group to the Show in the hope that the music might help raise their spirits.”
Welcoming our friends from Ukraine 🇺🇦 to our Show this evening amongst our many other wonderful guests from all over the world.... Welcome everyone, we hope you enjoy tonight's performance ☘️Posted by Celtic Steps The Show on Friday, April 22, 2022
The Ukrainian group was collected from their place of residency at the Killarney Innisfallen Hotel, courtesy of Flynn Coaches, and transported to the Killarney Racecourse, where they were welcomed by a sea of blue and yellow balloons at the entrance to the theatre.
The highlight of the night was the performance of the Ukrainian National Anthem by the Celtic Steps Musicians, who had taken the time earlier in the day to learn the piece.
“We are privileged to have some guests here tonight, who through no fault of their own ended up coming to Ireland," David Rea, co-producer and narrator of the Show, said while introducing the performance's emotional conclusion.
"We are delighted to have you and we hope you have a nice time in Kerry for as long as you are here…this is a small tribute to you.”
An emotional end to our Show last night 🇺🇦 Thank you to our wonderful musicians who came in early yesterday to learn the Ukrainian National Anthem as a small tribute to our guests 💙💛 #CelticStepsTheShow #SlavaUkrainePosted by Celtic Steps The Show on Saturday, April 23, 2022
Natalya Krasnenkova remarked on social media afterward: “Celtic Steps The Show, thank you so much for the Ukrainian Anthem, we appreciate it a lot, we were in tears, Slava Ukraine!”
George Saary, who works at the Innisfallen Hotel in Killarney and who helped coordinate the event, added “On behalf of the Ukrainian people, we want to thank you for your great welcome. Some of the group said they barely slept after experiencing the energy and excitement of the Show and they all appreciated the love and care that was shown to them on the night.”
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