The sounds of Ireland come to Beaver Creek
Vail, CO, Colorado
Finbar Wright grew up on a small farm in Ireland. Now he tours the world as
one of the most respected and well-known tenors in the world.
“I definitely have to pinch myself every now and then and there are times
when I feel enormously privileged,” said Wright, one third of The Irish
Tenors. “The wonderful thing about music and singing is that you become part
of important moments in people’s lives and it’s a great privilege. But I can
still smell the farm manure, I can assure you that.”
As part of the Irish Tenors, Wright knows the meaning of the word success “
the trio has played to crowds as large as 10,000 people, he said ” but he
remains “grounded” and true to his roots. When not on the road, he heads
back to his home in Ireland, which isn’t far from Blarney Castle, to spend
time with friends and family.
“Not that I’ve ever kissed the (Blarney) Stone or anything, but I’m only a
few miles from there,” Wright said jokingly.
The Irish Tenors formed in 1998 and have endured a few lineup changes “
Wright didn’t join the group until two years later, in 2000. The tenors
current roster is Wright, Anthony Kearns and Karl Scully. They are now on a
cross-country tour of America with a stop in Beaver Creek at the Vilar
Performing Arts Center Sunday night where they will sing Irish folk classics
and Christmas standards.
“The Christmas tour is always very popular and very busy and has been kind
of expanding every year, which is very good,” Wright said.
The Beaver Creek show is the only one scheduled in Colorado during this
tour, according to Kris Sabel, cultural programmer for the Vail Valley
“It’s classical, but it’s Christmas,” Sabel said of the tenors holiday show.
“It’s both the traditional Irish music as well as the carols.”
Sabel also noted that a full orchestra will back the Irish Tenors during
their performance, something people really enjoy about The Irish Tenor’s
live show, he said. Wright agreed.
“The quality of what we’re performing is very good and I think we’ve
maintained a standard of performance and entertainment,” Wright said.
Wright didn’t always know he was destined to become a full-time singer, he
“It kind of crept up on me I suppose,” Wright said.
Though he got involved with music at an early age ” his mother started him
at piano lessons at the age of five ” he said he didn’t appreciate it until
years later. He said he didn’t take serious voice lessons until he was in
“Anyone who has any hope as a singer (should have) kind of a natural sound
that’s pleasant for people to listen to at least and then they should go
through the entire technical training and all that and hopefully, when they
come out the other end, they still have the same voice but now they know how
to use it,” Wright said.
He compared a singer’s training to that of an athlete’s.
“It’s a very physical undertaking,” Wright said.
He and the other tenors still have to practice before every show, Wright
said, and vocal warm-ups are a must. Surprisingly though, Wright said he
sometimes listens to country music legend Willie Nelson before a show to
help calm his nerves.
“I think he’s a magnificent performer,” Wright said. “He’s a great natural
performer, which is always entertaining.”
High Life writer Charlie Owen can be reached at 970-748-2939 or
What: The Irish Tenors.
When: Sunday night at 6:30 p.m.
Where: Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek.
Cost: $95, $125, $145, depending on seating.
More information: Call 888-920-2787 or visit http://www.vilarpac.org.