This year’s Summer Music in Galway Festival is in full flight, with several events being held over the weekend, including an opera for children and one for adults in the grounds of Claregalway Castle.
The Festival opened last Monday in Claregalway Castle with a day-long 20th anniversary gathering of musicians and families from every continent. Many of these have attended SMG at least once over the past 20 years.
This year’s SMG Youth Opera Theatre’s production of The Green Children by Nicola LeFanu, will be performed at Claregalway Castle this Friday at 8.00pm.
This is one of the most powerful operas ever composed for children and adults, with beautiful music and a moving and dramatic storyline. Based on a 12th century story by the chronicler Ralph of Coggenhall, the opera opens when villagers find two green children lost in the woods. The villagers are initially fearful of and antagonistic towards the strange looking children, who today would be described as refugees from an ‘ethnically visible minority’. This initial prejudice dissipates when the Green Boy dies and the Green Girl tells an extraordinary story about their green world and how she and her brother found their way to middle earth. The opera concludes with a total acceptance of the Green Girl by the villagers and her decision to marry Guy, a local young man.
The SMG 2013 opera team includes director Airlie Scott from London, music director Bruce Dunn from Canada, and visiting artist, soprano Elinor Moran, from London.
SMG performances will conclude with a ‘20th Anniversary Gathering Farewell’, this Saturday in Claregalway Castle. This will be an all-day family event with music for and by children in the afternoon, and an evening orchestral concert which will include Vivaldi’s popular Four Seasons, with violin soloist Keith Pascoe from Cork, and a performance of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Lunchtime concerts, free to the public, will be held daily from 1.00pm to 1.30pm until this Friday, August 9. Tickets for all events: Web: www.glór.ie; Glór Box Office, 065 684 3103, or at the door, prior to each event
Comedian Shane for city show
Shane Clifford, who has been described by podcaster and comedian Blindboy as ‘The best comedian in Ireland, hands down’, will be at the city’s Town Hall Studio next Thursday, December 1, at 8.30pm to perform his new show, AW Class.
It’s being presented by the Lisa Richards Agency who are promising loads of laughter as Tralee man Shane tries and fails to get to grips with rugby fans, posh dogs, sinister yoghurt and retail breakdowns.
Shane who previously worked in Tesco, was 30 when he did his first stand-up show about six years ago. That was after he had quit his job, gone travelling and decided, on a whim, to upload some silly videos to the internet. He dealt with issues such as mental health and masculinity in an original and funny way in these videos and has since gone on to gain a reputation as an original voice on the Irish comedy scene, playing festivals and venues including Whelan’s.
Tickets €15, plus €1 booking fee, from tht.ie, 091-569777 or from the Town Hall Theatre box office.
INO present Donizetti comedy at Town Hall
Irish National Opera will return to Galway next Thursday, December 1, to present Donizetti’s Don Pasquale in the Town Hall Theatre at 8pm.
Donizetti’s sparkling operatic comedy is an intergenerational tug-of-war about love and money. It features Don Pasquale, a grumpy old bachelor; Ernesto, his good-looking young heir; and Norina, an attractive young widow.
This unorthodox love triangle is the basis for a hilarious and touching show that offers an entertaining slant on the threat of being disinherited, a mock marriage and a spendthrift wife.
Sung in Italian with English surtitles, it’s conducted by Teresa Riveiro Böhm and directed by Orpha Phelan, with Graeme Danby as Don Pasquale and Kelli-Ann Masterson as Norina.
Tickets for Don Pasquale are €30/€27, plus €1 booking fee, from tht.ie, 091-569777 or from the Town Hall Box Office.
Music festival set to return after a successful debut
Musicians, artists and DJs from more than 15 countries congregated in Galway City at the weekend to take part in the inaugural Songs From An Open Road (SFAOR).
Organisers Pádraic Boran and Pat Neary say the overwhelmingly positive reaction from audiences and participants alike augurs well for its future. They are hopeful it marks the beginning of a new international winter World Music festival in Galway.
There were a couple ‘firsts’ over the weekend. For many who attended the beautiful Loft @Seven in Bridge Street, it may well be a case of an ‘I was there’ moment, as an intimate but appreciative crowd saw a stupendous set from Indian futurist jazz percussionist Sarathy Koewar and his band. This was their Irish debut and also marked the beginning of a pioneering world tour from the burgeoning group. Pat and Pádraic are hopeful that this exciting talent will return to Ireland and Galway soon.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
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