Jenny Greene lets the music do the talking to a packed Marquee on Leeside

By Joe Dermody

DJ Jenny Greene rocks. In fact, she's the Jenny Hendrix of the turntables.

Hats off. And confessions out front and centre, I really didn't think this night would be my bag. She's a DJ, you say? I'd be of an age where talk of spinning discs would give you a shiver down the spine, and for all the wrong reasons. Apprehensive, and then some. But you'd have to be a stone to remain unmoved by this show.

There's a reason why Jenny Greene sells out the Marquee for a run of full nights every year; she's a class act.

And so too are conductor Gavin Murphy, singer Gemma Sugrue and all the members of the RTE Concert Orchestra.

Niamh O'Connor and Dylan O'Brien from Cobh, Co Cork. Picture: Michael O'Sullivan/OSM Photo

I'm not a fan of dance music. Some folks say things like they 'enjoy getting on down', or maybe 'dance, yeah, I'm really down with that, dude'. I'd be more 'down with that sort of thing' and 'I'm only here because I thought they said it was Reverend Al Green'.

But there are times when even the curmudgeons have to crank it up. I wasn't alone; the tent was wall-to-wall with dragged-along hubbies, clinging to their seats for dear life.

Sarah Horgan, Blarney; Siobhan Molumby, Tipperary; with Jayne Barry Sarah Crowley and Laura O'Neill from Cork. Picture: Michael O'Sullivan/OSM Photo

It was pointless, lads, resistance was futile. Like cameo actors in a cheesy 1980s/90s MTV pop video, the slippers, pipes, spectacles and soft caps were cast aside, and the dance floor bounced with ecstatic auld codgers who, for one glorious night of freestyling, managed to forget our arthritis and live it up.

A few bars of Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' would have been a good soundtrack for our leprous zombie descent to the dance floor.

John O'Brien and Mary T McCormack, from Cork and Tipperary. Picture: Michael O'Sullivan/OSM Photo

That said, you couldn't fault the set list. Her own warmup, prior to the orchestra taking the stage at 9pm, included Fatboy Slim's 'Right Here, Right Now' and Klanga (de Hofnar Remix) in the running mix of tunes and beats.

The night really takes off though when the orchestra arrives. Gemma Sugrue is a magnificent singer, great tone, immense range. Too many highlights to mention but Everybody’s Free by Rozalla, Urban Cookie Collective's 'The Key: The Secret' and Snap's Rhythm Is A Dancer' were all up there.

Jack Coade and Anita Hamley from Cork City. Picture: Michael O'Sullivan/OSM Photo

Black Box's 'Ride On Time' also won yelps of approval.

"Cork, how're ye doing? We had a great night last night in Donnybrook, there was only one thing wrong with it - it wasn't Cork," says Jenny in one of her few chatty moments. She also took time to heap praise on Gemma, Gavin and the orchestra. Well deserved.

She lets the music do the talking. Too right too. It speaks volumes. Rocking night.

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