Monday, December 15, 2014


Where better to imbibe the spirit of Christmas then to belly up to a bar and where better to find fine drinking buddies than in Dublin?  It's time to get reacquainted with the Bell family and their invincible patriarch Paddy as he welcomes the wee little people and the lucky leprechauns to join in for a grand Christmas celebration.  Faith and begorrah, but it's that time of year again when families gather and exchange good wishes and presents, sing a song or three to the season and raise a pint to the baby the day commemorates.

Ivoryton Playhouse is decking its halls with mistletoe and holly once again to welcome back the Bell family with "The Bells of Dublin: Part II:  The Carol of the Bells" until Sunday, December 21. Last year Jacqueline Hubbard, Ivoryton Playhouse's spirited Executive Director, wrote a wonderful family story about Irish folk and superstitions and traditions and this year, she's penned a second installment, stuffed with songs with an international flavor and steins of Christmas cheer.

R. Bruce Connolly is back as Paddy, with a mischievous twinkle in his eye and an inclination to discover trouble whether he's looking for it or not. Never at a loss for a wild scheme to make mountains of money, this time around he has outdone himself in the wild department with a plan to turn the Dublin bar into a restaurant of Mediterranean cuisine, by exchanging Irish stew for Spanish plates of tapas.  What could possible go wrong? He'll be joined by Playhouse favorites Michael McDermott, Ted Philips and Norm Rutty (from Save the Train, a local band), Jenna Berloni, Nancy and David Cardone, Olivia Harry, Larry Lewis, Maggie McClone Jennings, Michael Hotkowski, Holly Price and Celeste Cumming.

This original holiday musical is sure to grab you by your suspenders and spin you off to do an Irish jig, especially if you've had a hot rum toddy or two.  Melanie Guerin, who arranged the music, will have you levitating as the band captures the joy of the season.

For tickets ($32, seniors $30, students $20, children $15), call the Ivoryton Playhouse, 103 Main Street, Ivoryton at 860-767-7318 or online at  Performances are Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m., with matinees Saturday  and Sunday at 2 p.m.  Lights, thousands of them, are setting Ivoryton village aglow.  Come early to enjoy the sight.

Warm your heart and hands with Paddy and his extended family at Bell's Pub for a glass filled to the brim with holiday happiness.

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