Beginning Dec. 1, Irish female ensemble Celtic Woman will kick off their U.S. tour, the Symphony Tour – A Christmas Celebration. Ahead of the tour, Celtic Woman visited The Recording Academy's headquarters in Santa Monica, Calif., to participate in an exclusive GRAMMY.com interview, discussing their recent album, touring and the common themes of their music, among other topics.
"The Irish people are the most fantastic storytellers," said vocalist Lisa Lambe. "And that's what is the beating heart of all the songs within [our] show… [Our themes] are epic — land, loss, hope, [and] love — things that are universal."
Celtic Woman's lineup comprises vocalists Chloë Agnew, Lambe and Susan McFadden, and violinist Máiréad Nesbitt. The project is the brainchild of David Downes, the musical director of the famed Irish-themed stage show "Riverdance." In 2004 Downes formed the all-female ensemble with hopes of combining traditional Irish music with elaborate staging. The ensemble released their self-titled debut album in 2005, holding the top spot on Billboard's World Albums chart for 81 weeks. A year later, Celtic Woman released their first holiday album, A Christmas Celebration, which also topped the World Albums Chart. Their most recent PBS special, "Songs From The Heart: Live At Powercourt House & Garden," was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Musical Direction.
In January Celtic Woman released Believe, a studio album featuring 17 tracks, including a cover of Simon And Garfunkel's GRAMMY-winning "Bridge Over Troubled Water." Released in October, their latest album, Home For Christmas, is currently No. 1 on Billboard's World Albums chart. Celtic Woman's U.S. tour kicks off Dec. 1 in Foxwoods, Conn.