About Beirt le Chéile

don and megan re make color
“Beirt le Chéile” is a guitar and vocal duo based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, performing songs from the Irish tradition.

MEGAN BENNETT IRBY, while new to the genre, already has captured the attention of top Irish musicians: John Whelan, 7-time All-Ireland accordion player: “Brilliant singer…the perfect voice for traditional Irish music.” Brian Conway, All-Ireland fiddle player: “[Her] voice is simply magical!” Bridget Fitzgerald master sean nós (old style) Irish singer: “Really lovely singing. Just beautiful voice.” Damien Connolly, All-Ireland accordion/melodian player: “Wow…so much emotion in her voice!” Sean Clohessy, recipient of multiple All-Ireland titles: “Simply beautiful.” Don Meade, All-Ireland harmonica player: “Her song was the absolute highlight of this festival for me.”

DON PENZIEN has long been a top-flight performer of traditional Irish music, touring frequently with The Máirtín de Cógáin Project, John Whelan, Jil Chambless, Captain Mackey’s Goatskin & String Band, Legacy, and Gailfean (formerly known as The Pure Drop; featuring Brian Conway, John Whelan, & Máirtín de Cógáin). Don’s dexterous work on DADGAD guitar provides solid, driving rhythms to traditional tunes as well as perceptive and sensitive accompaniments to songs and airs. When called upon, he also adds whistle, bodhran and vocals to arrangements.

Together, these two are Beirt le Chéile. Since their debut at Celtic Fest Mississippi in 2014, each and every one of their performances has drawn the overwhelmingly enthusiastic approval of their audiences.

“Beirt le Chéile” (two together)

(pronounced ‘burt-lah  k’hay-lah‘)

Our name is inspired by the blending of two Irish proverbs that, when taken together, convey the value of true friendship: When two share a journey together, united in strength, the path that lies ahead is made more fruitful and harmonious.

Giorraíonn beirt bóthar.

          Two shorten the road.

Ní neart go cur le chéile.

          There is no strength without unity.

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