Re: Panto Memories,Before the Panto there was Ruaille Buailla

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Posted by Butch on January 18, 2002 at 16:09:13:

In Reply to: Panto Memories posted by Mogli on January 18, 2002 at 09:40:02:

Stephen Daly
Details: I took part in Stephen Garvey's production of the Country
Girl in the Town Hall , Castlebar in 1944. This was a most popular
musical comedy which featured most of the society of Castlebar of
that era. It was a musical comedy first produced in Daly's Theatre ,
London in 1902, the year the Boer War ended in South Africa..
Those people in Castlebar who took part in Stephen's production
of 1944 will I am sure remember most of the hit tunes of that Musical
Comedy. Stephen Garvey produced the musical " The Belle of New
York" in 1945. I gave commentaries on the various Carnival acts in
1946 and '47such as the Real Rudis of Austria" (plunging from on
high into a small tank of flames in the Military Barracks and the " Dirt
Track Riders from Australia" which enlivened the crowds who
flocked to where the 3rd level Institute of Education is now. The
work for our Transition Year of 1944 was emptying lorry loads of
turf into railway wagons at Castlebar Railway Station from 8am to
6pm to keep the home fires of Dublin burning. We had to go for the
rehearsals of the musical comedies in the town hall after work. After
drinking pints of cider in Buckos we were fit to dance all the half sets
which every Ceili featured in the Town Hall. Memories of Castlebar
of this era were" plastic to receive and marble to retain"

21 April 2001 James Daly : Our family arrived in Castlebar from the small village of Burncourt, County Tipperary somewhere between the years 1953 and 1954, and throughout my years growing up the name of Stephen Garvey would crop up continually, here then is an excerpt from a newspaper cutting about the great man of stage and music who blossomed before and during our time . In answer to a query from a poster some time ago who wished to know if our 'Tears of Nostalgia" had dried up. Get yourself a bucket, and a mop Paddy! . This river gonna flow for a LONG time!. January 18th. 2002 Stephen Garvey is coming home

14 August 1996

Stephen Garvey was truly a master musician, composer, director and producer. The legacy he left to Castlebar and lovers of
music everywhere is profound.

Forty years after his death in Texas, his reinternment next Sunday in the Garvey plot of Old Cemetery, Castlebar, is a fitting
tribute to one of the town's greatest personalities.

Born in 1902, the fourth son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Charles Garvey, Castle Street, Castlebar, Stephen came to
prominence as a musician at the age of 12 with his first band consisting of himself, the piano and piano stool.

A perfectionist in all things, emotional, exacting, and having all those eccentricities associated with genius, there was a distinct
class about everything he did and every show he produced.

In addition to band and show work, he was organist and choirmaster in the Church of the Holy Rosary, Castlebar, for many

A master of Irish music on the piano, Stephen delighted in playing for Irish dancers and it was frequently said that only
Stephen could play an old time waltz in proper tempo.

The year, 1926, saw him in great demand all over Connaught, but greater things were to come and Stephen Garvey's band
were broadcasted by Radio Eireann from a dance at Bailey's Ballroom, Galway.

Another critically acclaimed broadcast followed from the Town Hall in Castlebar.

Stephen's interest in the music field broadened and he began producing Gilbert and Sullivan operas and musical shows.

His fame spread to London and beyond where he was a great hit, especially among Irish emigrants.

Of his London tour in 1952, Stephen remarked: "So numerous are the Irish in London, that I was just as much at home in the
halls there as I would be in the Town Hall in Castlebar or in any of the provincial halls in Ireland which I frequent.

"One thing that struck me very forcibly - and I would like their parents to note this - was how very happy our exiles are in
London, how smartly they turn out, how prosperous they appear and, above all, how well they get on with the Londoners."

His first musical production was a pantomime "Little Red Riding Hood" and he followed this with "Babes in the Wood", "The
Enchanted Forest" and "The Mikado".

Among the many talented musicians to get their first "break" with Stephen was Val Doonican. Stephen died on January 27th,
1962, aged 60 years, while visiting his sister, Sister Mercedes, in Houston, Texas.
This was excerpted from an article in our very own the excellent " Connaught Tellegraph" printed 1996 I hope Messer's Gillespie and family don't mind my small stealth Dom a leath Sceal, agus Gur a Mile Maith Agaibh. Seamas O Dalaigh. Denver ,Colorado, U. S. A.

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