BEFORE it was co-opted by the Christians to become what we now know as Halloween, October 31 was known in Gaelic as Oiche Shamhna the final harvest festival before the dark of winter.
It’s also the name that’s been given to tomorrow night’s Irish-themed night of music at St Brigid’s Hall in Crossley, which serves as both a fund-raiser for Peter’s Project and a celebration of a Warrnambool musician who has been literally living every day like it could be his last.
Twelve months ago, piper Corey Henderson was given 12 months to live, but has not taken the diagnosis of terminal cancer lying down.
Gig organiser Marty Ruane said Henderson has done more living since his diagnosis than most people do in a lifetime.
“He was given 12 months to live and that was 12 months ago and he’s still here,” Ruane said.
“We had a do for him 12 months ago to celebrate his life while we still could. Now 12 months has passed and he’s crossed the equator about 18 times this year and had the best year of his life.”
Henderson has spent what was expected to be his final year on earth travelling the globe visiting everywhere from Ireland to China, Africa to Paris, and plenty of places in between, as well as continuing to play gigs.
He joined Warrnambool Celtic group The Likely Celts at a recent gig at the WAG and is planning to play a tune or two with Adelaide’s Jack Brennan one of the best players of the uilleann pipes in Australia at tomorrow night’s fund-raiser.
Also on the bill will be Shane Howard & Band, Lex’s Shed, Paul Cullen, The Likely Celts, Hog Stompin’ Zydegators and the O’Shea Ryan Dancers.
Ruane said that aside from being a fund-raiser for Peter’s Project, the night was “another opportunity to have a rage with Corey while he’s still here”.
Oiche Shamhna kicks off from 7.30pm.
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