The Face of Irish Music: Photographs by Robin Hiteshew

Irish traditions and folklore are steeped in the fabric of Lackawanna County.

To celebrate this vibrant part of our community, the Lackawanna County Commissioners Patrick M. O’Malley, Jerry Notarianni and Laureen A. Cummings are sponsoring a unique exhibit and panel honoring Irish Culture. The Face of Irish Music: Photographs by Robin Hiteshew opens on First Friday April 7 at the Lackawanna County Government Center at The Globe, Wyoming Avenue, Scranton, from 5 – 8 PM.  Mr. Hiteshew will be in attendance along with the Sligo-style music of renowned fiddle player Brian Conway, who is featured in one of the portraits.

The exhibit documents decades of musicians playing traditional Irish songs.  It was recently on display at the Pennsylvania State Capital Building for the month of March. It is funded by the Consul General of Ireland New York, The Irish Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade, and the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, Philadelphia.

Mr. Hiteshew began photographing Irish music and musicians soon after he joined the Philadelphia Céilí Group in 1978, a non-profit organization whose mission is to present and preserve traditional Irish culture. The artworks were taken over a 36-year span and celebrate the vitality of Irish music in Ireland and the United States.

On Saturday, April 8, from 11 a.m. – noon at the Government Center a panel on Dancing in the Kitchen: The Role of Music in Irish and Irish American Culture will examine how traditional Irish music has shaped the identity and culture in Ireland and the United States. Distinguished panelists include: photographer Robin Hiteshew, musician Brian Conway, poet John E. McGuigan, and cultural anthropologist Dori Panzer.

Both events are free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Maureen McGuigan, Deputy Director of Arts and Culture, at 570.963.6590, ext. 102, or email

Arts & Healing

The world of art impacts people in a number of different ways – socially, recreationally and spiritually.

Continuing in that vein, a panel of distinguished speakers from a variety of disciplines will examine the impact the arts have on healing.

The Lackawanna County Arts and Culture Department and the Lackawanna County Arts, Culture and Education (ACE) Council will present an “Afternoon with the Arts: How the Arts Help us Heal” on Saturday, April 1, in the Ladies Parlor on the second floor of the Scranton Cultural Center, 420. N. Washington Avenue, from 1 pm – 3 pm.  The program will run from 1 pm – 2 pm and be followed by a reception. Both activities are free and open to the public.

The panel discussion will be moderated by arts therapist Erin Joyce and feature Mary Lou Chirbirka a visual artist who runs Good Grief Art, a program to help people during the grieving process;  Donna Doherty, Physician Liaison with Traditional Home Health and Hospice; and Dr. Mladen Jecmenica, a physician with The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education.  Mark Reinhart, a musician, Qigong practitioner and owner of Three Pure Rivers Studio, will perform at the reception.

The group’s discussion will center on the healing quality of various arts disciplines and how they can aid in all levels of recovery for serious trauma, loss, and dealing with the stresses of everyday life.

 “Afternoon With The Arts” is modeled after the successful “Wake Up With The Arts” program, an annual breakfast now in its ninth year and features a national arts industry speaker.  The concept of Afternoon with the Arts is to integrate the arts into dialogues across multiple disciplines.

The Lackawanna County Arts and Culture Department was formed in 2004 and is supported through an education and culture fee that generates approximately $1.2 million for the purpose of enriching the County.  The office offers community grants, public arts programming, workshops and lectures and oversees the operation of the Electric City Trolley Station and Museum.

To register for the workshop, contact the Lackawanna County Arts and Culture Department at 570.963.6590, ext. 106, or email