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A feast of shows for kids of all ages as Babor— Festival gets underway



Date Published: 11-Oct-2012

Theatre, music, aerial dance, puppetry, comedy, literature, art exhibitions and workshops for children aged two and older will be presented at this year’s Baboró International Arts Festival for Children

Baboró, which will open on Monday next, October 15 and run until Sunday, October 21, will showcase the biggest programme of Irish work for children and families ever presented in Ireland, alongside work from Scotland, England, Italy, Germany and Canada. In total more than 80 performances of 16 productions will take place every day and evening throughout the week.

Donegal’s aerial dance company Fidget Feet will perform their thrilling version of Red Riding Hood, Catch Me for ages eight and over, while Scotland’s award-winning Visible Fictions will present their hit show, a version of the classic tale, Jason and the Argonauts for ages nine and over. Theatre Lovett bring their enthralling performance of The House That Jack Filled for ages eight and over, and Drama Works Ireland present Children of the Black Skirt. This gothic tale for young audiences ages 10-16 is by award-winning Australian author Angela Betzien.

Families can also enjoy an exquisite stage adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s story, The Happy Prince, narrated by Little John Nee, with a musical score composed and conducted by Vincent Kennedy and performed by Donegal Youth Orchestra and Choir.

Irish language and bilingual productions feature strongly, including Spraoí, a physical theatre show from Branar Téatar Do Pháistí for ages 3-5. It’s the story of two boys, one Irish and one Catalan, who must learn to communicate so they can play together. Púca Puppets bring their beautiful show, Tic Teac Tic Teac, an experience for children aged 3-5 to enjoy with their parents. Fibín Teo will present the world premiere of Bodach an Chóta Lachna, a physical show for ages 7-11, based on a legend from the ancient Irish Fianna cycle.

Graffiti Theatre, one of Ireland’s best children’s theatre groups, will bring their show An Fear Siúil (Walking Man) for ages 6-9. This story is told on a beautiful, miniature handcrafted wooden set, with live musical accompaniment.

Other highlights include toddler shows including Italy’s Teatrimperfetti with their colourful work Tiny Coloured Movements for ages 2-5. Germany’s HELIOS Theater present H20, a science show for children aged 2-4 in which a real water village is created. Potato Needs a Bath comes from Scottish performer Shona Reppe and it’s for ages 2-5.

Kids aged from 7-12 can enjoy the Róisín Beag’s Silent Disco, two hours of dancing and merriment. Meanwhile Baboró will introduce its first ever stand-up comedy show, as author Steve Hartley brings his hilarious book Danny Baker Record Breaker to life.

There are also free literature events with Joyce Dunbar, the author of over 80 books, including Puss Jekyll Cat Hyde. Her daughter, the award-winning author and illustrator Polly Dunbar will introduce children to her new picture-book adventure, Arthur’s Dream. The duo will also read from favourite children’s books on Sunday, October 21. Established, emerging and aspiring children’s writers will have an opportunity to join Steve Hartley, Polly Dunbar and Joyce Dunbar as they share their experience in a Meet the Authors special.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup



Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

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