Malley Keelan Family & Friends Concerts
Welcome to Malley Keelan, singer

Malley Keelan Family & Friends Concerts

Snapshots of My Life, page 1

Music in Worship

Lincoln Light Opera 1981-1999

Malley Patrick Keelan

John McCormack--Ireland's Greatest Tenor

Frank Patterson--Ireland's Golden Tenor

Richard Crooks--Tenor Voice of Firestone

Richard Tucker--America's Famed Verdi Tenor

Aroldo Lindi--Swedish Tenore di Forza

Robert Goulet--Sir Lancelot of Baritones


Since 1988 the Keelan & Musical Friends artists have presented "family-friendly" music events to benefit many different community charitible organizations.  Here some photos from several of the Christmas concerts 2004-2011.

Pictured here is Malley addressing the audience of 360 during the 24nd annual Keelan & Friends Christmastide Concert at First United Methodist Church, in December, 2011. Seated behind him are the Holiday Concert Singers.

For many years brother Sean (violin) and sister Maggie (harp) were heard in duos. This photo dates from 2004, the last time they worked together.

Malley directing Silent Night with Betsy Bobenhouse playing the flute. A long shot scan of the 2009 concert event held that year at Rosemont Alliance Church.  Former Mayor Don Wesely was the special guest reader.

Betsy and Jim Kula are part of the repertory ensemble of artists for the annual concert in 2006 at Trinity United Methodist Church.


1st Below:  Handel's Hallelujah chorus from 2010 concert at First United Methodist Church.  Dick Gamet conducting, Brent Shaw, organist.

2nd Below: director Keelan with flutist and friend Betsy Bobenhouse; 2011 concert, First UMC.


A history of the Keelan Family & Friends Benefit Concerts

Beginning at historic St. Francis Chapel in December 1988, the Keelans and their talented friends have entertained thousands. Originally called "WinterFest" the first three years, it featured carols and solos of the holiday season, an abridged "Messiah" performance and other classical music offerings. It was renamed in 1991 as Keelan & Friends holiday carol music events and became a community tradition at St. Francis Chapel. When the chapel was sold to the Catholic church in 1998, the Keelan concerts then moved to various major church sanctuaries each Christmas since 1999, including St. Paul United Methodist; First Presbyterian, Trinity United Methodist; First Plymouth United Church of Christ and Rosemont Alliance Christian Church. The concerts originated as fundraisers for the St. Francis Chapel, but since have raised funds and awareness for a wide variety of charitable causes including People's City Mission; Lincoln Food Bank; Make-A-Wish Foundation; Voices of Hope; Fresh Start; CASA (Court-Appointed Special Attornies); Catholic Social Services; Mourning Hope; Friendship Home; NE Leukemia and Lymphona; Northeast Family Center; Salvation Army, Matt Talbot Kitchen, Autism Family Network; Heartland Myasthenia Gravis Foundation, Jr. Achievement, Clinic With a Heart; DomestiPups, ARC of Nebraska, People's Health Center and others. ALL monies gathered in ticket sales go to the chosen organization and all artists give their time and talents free gratis.

In 1998 Malley and friends presented their first Mother's Day Bouquet of Song concert. The first HymnFest was held in 2005 and other theme concerts were presented over the last two decades at St. Francis Chapel, First Presbyterian, Vine UCC., Southminster UMC and First UMC. These included the popular Keelan Irish music shows and several Gilbert & Sullivan musical events, as well as classical chamber music concerts.

Since 2003 the American Advertising Federation of Lincoln has been the "flagship" sponsor of the Keelan Family & Friends Christmas concerts. Lincoln businesses such as Butherus, Maser & Love Funeral Home and Peoples Choice Federal Credit Union as well as "in-kind" help by Augstum's Printing have also generously contributed financially to enable these events to continue.

The Keelans have been blessed to be associated with many of the finest musical artists in the Lincoln-Omaha area: trumpeter Mac McCune; organists John Cummins, Nic Engel and Murray Foreman; pianists Wilma Sundeen, David Abbott, Audun Ravnan, Joan Allen; flutist Betsy Bobenhouse; cellist Kim Cook as well as many professional singers in this area including Julie Enersen, Katie Mozack and Adrianne Dickson.  Noted literature, theater, media and political personalities Ted Kooser; Roy Scheele; Bill Kloefkorn; Lora Black; Pippa White; Leta Powell Drake; the late Rev. Dale Holt, John Stevens Berry, John Cutler, former Lincoln Mayor Don Wesely,  Cathy Blythe & Scott Young of 1240 KFOR, Diane Gonzolas, Cindy Lange-Kubick and City Councilman Doug Emery among others have made each event memorable with special readings.


Ted Kooser, former U.S. Poet Laureate, reads from his book "Local Wonders," which had the audience amused as he recollected his youthful days working in his father's store at Christmas-time.  2006, Trinity UMC concert event.

The audience of 450 gave the 2006 concert at Trinity UMC a standing ovation at the conclusion of the 2 hour program.


The 26th annual Keelan Family & Friends Christmas Carol Concert was presented Sunday, December 22, 2013 at First Presbyterian Church at 17th & F sts.  Tickets were $15 at the door. Abby Powell-Turpin of 10/11 News was the featured singer; Drs. David and Lia (Jensen) Abbott travelled from Michigan to present classical piano music selections; Col. Gary Lamb, U.S. Army, retired, conducted several selections; Mac McCune and pianist Jim Williamson added to the festive event and Pippa White and Michael Keelan were co-hosts. Young bass player Stephen Cantareros was well-received and  KF&F stalwarts Betsy Bobenhouse and Jim Kula were outstanding.  Dr. Charles Ore and Karen Howland accompanied the singers and played solos.  Dr. Brian Pfoltner, music director of First Presbyterian Church, also directed several carols, as did Malley Keelan.  Over $5,000 was raised for Volunteer Partners.


Rosemont Alliance Church was the host church for the 25th anniversary concert of the Keelan Family & Friends Christmas Concert.  $4,2100.00 was taken at the gate for the People's City Mission.

Artists included Mac MuCune; Wilma Sundeen; Betsy Bobenhouse, Julie Enersen; Joan Allen; Tom Trenney; Brent Shaw; Dawn Krogh and Michael Keelan.  The Holiday Concert Singers led the carols.

**************************************************************************** First United Methodist Church hosted the 24th Annual Keelan Family & Friends Christmas Concert December 20, 2011, as a benefit for Lincoln's People's Health Center.  Approximately 360 attended and $4,366.00 was brought in from ticket sales to help the agency.  The concert included the Holiday Concert Singers; musical artists Wilma Sundeen; Betsy Bobenhouse; Michael Keelan; Tom Trenney, Joan Allen, Karen Howland; Brent Shaw; Amy Williams; Julie Enersen; Katie Mozack; and Cindy Lange-Kubick and Diane Gonzolas of local and statewide media. 


The 11th A Mother's Day Bouquet of Song was presented on Sunday, May 8 at 7:30 at Heritage Presbyterian Church.

Nearly $1,200.00 was taken to benefit Voices of Hope. The event included acclaimed actor/writer Pippa White, violinist Michael Keelan and numerous UN-L music department artists and other well-known Lincoln musicians.




Sunday, December 19, 2010; 7:30--

the 23rd Annual Malley Keelan & Friends Christmas Concert --

at First United Methodist Church, 50th & St. Paul,

Malley and friends Wilma Sundeen, Mac McCune, Julie Enersen, Jim Kula, Jack Cole, Lora Black, Carrie Schultz, Dick Gamet, Brent Shaw, Karen Howland and Nic Engel, along with the 40-voice Holiday Concert Singers.

A freewill offering of $3,271 was collected to benefit Arc of Lincoln.


Saturday, May 8, 7:00 p.m.--the tenth "A Mother's Day Bouquet of Song"

This event was a big success, entitled "Sincerely,..." it featured pop music of the 1950s. $1,626.00 was raised for the Lincoln Literacy Council. Malley, Wilma Sundeen, Julie Enersen, Jean Patoka, Mac McCune and Jim Kula participated in the event held at First UMC in Lincoln, NE.


2009 Keelans & Musical Friends Annual Christmas Celebration Concert a Success!--and the weather "not too bad" this year, for a change!

The 22nd annual concert was presented, Sunday, December 20 at 7:30 p.m. at Rosemont Alliance Church, 2600 No. 70th st., and featured Malley & the Holiday Concert Singers; Mac McCune, trumpeter; Wilma Sundeen and Joan Allen, pianists; Jana Holzmeier, soprano; Betsy Bobenhouse, flutist. Featured guest was Lincoln author Mary Jane Nielsen presenting a slide presentation entitled "Memories of Lincoln, Christmas Past," compiled by her and co-author Jon Roth.

Proceeds of $3,300 went to Clinic With a Heart. Sponsors were the Lincoln Advertising Federation, Butherus, Maser & Love Funeral Home and Heartland Pantry. Tickets were $12 at the door, only, that evening. Doors open at 6:45. This event offered a "variety show" in the same mode as our past holiday music endeavours, with some excellent choral work, marvelous vocal and instrumental soloists and of course several medleys of beloved carols in which the audience participated. ****************************************************************************

2009 Mother's Day Concert

Musical guests Wilma Sundeen, Lynn Cooper and soloists from the Holiday Concert Singers joined with Malley Keelan, Wilma Sundeen and the Holiday Concert Singers to offer another A Mother's Day Bouquet of Song Variety Concert. This was a benefit for Domesti Pups, whose motto is "Man's Best Friend Serving Mankind." The organization offers dogs for service and companionship to needy individuals.The event was presented Sunday evening, May 10, at 7:15 at First United Methodist Church in Lincoln. $1,500 was raised for the DomestiPups organization.




We are pleased to announce that the 20th anniversary of the Malley Keelan & Friends Christmas Concert presented Sunday December 21, 2008 at 7:00 p.m. at Rosemont Alliance Christian Church was a great success and raised over $2,200 in receipts for Jr. Achievement. Admission was just $8.00 for adults, reduced by 33% from $12.00, due to a sensitivity to economic times, so the amount was lower than usual. Also, due to incredibly frigid winter weather with windchills down to 20% below zero that evening, attendance was much lower than usual. However, the concert (despite a number of choir absences due to weather and illness) was a resounding success with the nearly 275 who were able to attend. Sponsored by the Advertising Federation of Lincoln and Butherus, Maser & Love Funeral Home, this year's music event featured the Holiday Concert Singers led by Carrie Solomon Schultz and Richard Gamet; pianist Wilma Sundeen; flutist Betsy Bobenhouse, accompanists Joan Allen, and Nic Engel; trumpeter Mac McCune and singers Julie Enersen and Malley Keelan in a diverse program of light classical music and familiar holiday carols and songs. In addition, former Lincoln Mayor and state senator Don Wesely presented a special holiday reading. A reception followed. All proceeds were to Jr. Achievement of Lincoln, a business tutorial for Lincoln Pulic School school students. Attendees also brought a food item for the Lincoln area Food Bank.


2008 Mother's Day weekend concert event--

A Mother's Day Bouquet of Song featuring classical and popular music was presented by noted pianist Wilma Sundeen May 10, 2008 at Rosemont Alliance Christian Church in Lincoln. She was the sole performer and the event netted over $1,000 for the Lincoln Peoples City Mission.


2008 St. Patrick's Day weekend concert--

"Shamrocks & Roses" was a benefit concert for the Lincoln Literacy Council on March 14, 2008. Presented at First United Methodist Church, it featured Malley with Wilma Sundeen, Julie Enersen and the Noteworthy Ensemble. Nearly $1,600 was raised for the LLC.



2007 Christmas Carol Concert--

Despite winter storm warnings an enthusiastic audience attended the Keelan Family & Friends 2007 Christmas Celebration Concert at historic First Plymouth UCC at 20th & D sts. on Sunday afternoon, the 23rd, at 4 p.m. Over $3,500 was raised for the use of Autism Family Network, and the event featured Wilma Sundeen; Mac McCune; Pippa White; NPR's Lora Black and Nebraska poet Roy Scheele. The Holiday Concert Singers was lead by Malley, Dick Gamet and Carrie Solomon in carols for audience singalong. Our sponsor was again The Advertising Federation of Lincoln with additional support from Peoples Choice Federal Credit Union and Butherus, Maser & Love Funeral Home.


2007 "Mother's Day Bouquet of Song" raises $1,400 for MG group--

The concert was presented in the sanctuary of Southminster United Methodist Church, at 16th & Otoe Sts. on Friday evening, May 11th.

The artists included Pippa White; Lora Black; Wilma Sundeen; Mac McCune; Betsy Bobenhouse; Kathy Hill; Amy Williams; Carrie Solomon Schultz; Julie Eschliman; Nic Engel; John Carter Cole and Malley Keelan. It was a benefit for the Heartland Myasthenia Gravis Foundation, a support group for that neuro disease. Tickets were $10 and over 130 people attended on the warm evening. Other donations were also received.