LEWISTON — Cara, Germany’s top-rated traditional Irish band, will perform this month at the Franco-American Heritage Center, Skye Theatre and Lakeside Theater. Formed in 2003, the band combines its mastery of vocals, piano, fiddle, flute, guitar, bodhrán, uilleann pipes, accordion and concertina with a dry-witted and entertaining stage presence.

A quintet with two female lead singers, Cara plays a mix of songs of traditional and newly composed material, most of which is written by band members.

With so many talented musicians coming out of Ireland, one might ask why a German band would even try to go professional and tour the world with its own interpretation of Celtic music. But its debut CD, “In Colour,” was a huge success, and festivals and venues all around Europe booked the band.

In 2006, Cara was signed by Real Good Music in the United States and its second CD, “In Between Times,” won a nomination for the German Critics Award and a nomination for CD of the Year by Folker Magazine. Cara was also voted one of the 10 most influential bands of the last decade by Folkworld Magazine.

Since then, the group has had three successful tours in the United States.

The concerts presented by New England Celtic Arts will be at 7 p.m. at the Franco-American Heritage Center on Tuesday, Aug. 18; at Skye Theatre Performing Arts Center in Carthage on Wednesday, Aug. 19; and at Lakeside Theater in Rangeley on Thursday, Aug. 20.

General admission tickets for the Franco center are $10 and may be purchased by calling 689-2000, online at francoamericanheritage.org or at the door. Tickets are also $10 for Skye Theatre; call 62-4445. At Lakeside Theater, tickets are $10 in advance, $12.50 at the door; and may be purchased at the theater, online at rangeleymovies.com or by calling 864-5000.
There will be a preshow jam at 6:15 p.m. at FAHC and at Skye when audience members are encouraged to bring their instruments and jam for a few minutes with the artists. Tickets for jammers 18 and under are $5.

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