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Connacht Tribune

Galway 2020 plans spectacular installation in heart of Joyce Country

Dara Bradley

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Finnish light artist Kari Kola lights up Stonehenge to mark UNESCO World Heritage Day.

Galway 2020 expects crowds of around 20,000 to flock to Joyce Country over St. Patrick’s Day weekend next year to see a light installation on the shores of Loch na Fooey (Lough Na Fuaiche).

It is anticipated that some 5,000 patrons every night from Saturday, March 14, to Tuesday, March 17, will view ‘Savage Beauty’, a lights-based artwork by Finish artist Kari Kola, which promises to “transform the Ceann Garbh mountainside”.

The installation is one of the centrepieces of the programme for the European Capital of Culture yearlong showcase of culture in Galway, and temporary park and ride hubs will be used to bus patrons to viewing points along the lake.

Kari Kola describes the installation as a ‘once in a lifetime opportunity’.

“To celebrate the Galway European Capital of Culture, I want to create something that all Irish people and people around the world will remember for the rest of their lives,” she said.

Galway 2020, the company set-up to deliver the European Capital of Culture, has applied to Galway County Council for an event licence for the installation.

According to the application, the area to be illuminated is approximately 3.3 kilometres in length and ranges in height from 30 metres to 500 metres. Six generators will be airlifted by helicopter to the site, and will be temporarily installed to power LED light sources.

The exact location of the site is between Benwee and Bunnacunneen mountains, approximately two kilometres north-west of the town of Finny, at the Mayo/Galway border.

The proposal is to illuminate a section of the Bunnacunneen and Ben Beg uplands, located on the southern shores of the lake.

Viewing of the installation will be from the junction with the R300 on the Clonbur side, and the beach on the Maam side.

“The audience will only be able to access viewing on dedicated coaches from a number of proposed park and ride hubs – Maam Cross, Leenaun, Tourmakeady, Clonbur. Additional shuttles may travel from Galway and Clifden. The roads in the immediate vicinity will be closed to traffic,” according to the event licence application.

The event will be ticketed, and patrons will have an opportunity to reserve a seat on a scheduled shuttle bus from and back to the park and ride hubs.

“It is proposed that at least six 30-seater minibuses run in continuous loop from each of the four park and ride hubs. They will run at ten minute intervals and will return patrons from the site. This frequency allows for 150 patrons to be dropped at the viewing area every ten minutes from 6pm to 11pm. This allows for approximately 5,000 patrons per night. Buses will begin to depart the hubs at 5.30pm and the last bus will depart at 10.40pm. Additional buses will be provided to ferry the last groups back to the parking hubs. Each of the parking hubs will have parking for approximately 300 to 400 cars,” the application said.

The length of the viewing area is 3.8km, and the width is an average of five metres, giving a viewing area of 19,000 metres squared. “The maximum audience at any one time along the viewing area is expected to be between 1,000 and 1,500 and these will be spread over a 3.5km area,” it said.

MKO, planning and environmental consultants, carried out an Ecological Impact Assessment and an Appropriate Assessment Screening Report, which accompanies the licence application.

The ecological assessment concluded: “The proposed project will not result in any significant effect on any European or nationally designated site for nature conservation. There will be no less or alteration to any of the habitats identified within the proposed equipment footprint.

“No significant effects on fauna is anticipated due to the nature, scale and duration of the proposed project. Provided that the project is constructed and operated in accordance with the design and best practice that is outlined within this application, significant impacts on biodiversity are not anticipated at any geographic scale.”

Connacht Tribune

Tristan’s Ciúnas nominated for award at Dublin Film Festival

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Tristan Heanue shooting Ciúnas in Connemara.

Connemara filmmaker Tristan Heanue has been nominated for the Discovery Award at the Virgin Media Dublin International Film Festival for his short Irish-language film Ciúnas (Silence) which was shot around Connemara. The winner of the award will be announced at the closing ceremony of the festival on Sunday, March 8.

Previous recipients include Barry Keoghan, Niamh Algar and John Connors.

Ciúnas won the Físín Script Award at the 2018 Dingle Film Festival and that festival came on board as co-executive producer on the finished short, which Tristan wrote, directed and produced,

The plot centres on a couple embarking on a journey in the midst of a family crisis and it stars Gary Lydon (The Guard, Calvary, Pure Mule, The Clinic) Ally Ní Chiaráin (The Drummer and the Keeper, Michael Inside) and rising star Hazel Doupe (Float Like a Butterfly, Michael Inside, Calm with Horses).

“I’m hugely honoured to be nominated for this award among such an incredible list of Irish talent,” says the Letterfrack man. “I am so happy with how people seem to have connected with the film since we screened at the Galway Film Fleadh last July.”

Ciúnas has already won the Grand Prix at the 64th Cork Film Festival in November, which means it’s now on the Academy Awards longlist for 2021.

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

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Eclectics aim for a musical smorgasbord for all tastes

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Eclectics success…Liam Ó Maonlaí and Me Auld Flower.

Groove Tube with Cian O’Connell

There’s a hint in the name as to what you might expect from the night – and it’s that diversity of styles that helps explain how, right through the second half of 2019, Eclectics emerged as one of Galway’s premier nights for original music.

Curated by David Boland, the showcase gained huge support by prioritising quality and putting artists first. In the Black Gate, Eclectics has a venue that matches its own ethos – it is the city’s most intimate venue not just because of its size but because, invariably, its patrons are intent on listening to the act on stage.

The 2019 programme began and ended with Cavan songstress Lisa O’Neill but it featured a long list of talented Irish musicians in between.

On a Galway scale, local artists including Jack Lee, Maija Sofia and Dead Horse Jive all played headline shows in the latter stages of the year. There were performances too from experienced Irish musicians like John Spillane and Hothouse Flowers’ Liam O Maonlaoi.

Eclectics is a place for artists at the start of their careers as well as those that have long established themselves in the industry. There are no set criteria for the acts David books.

While the venue may lend itself to a quieter sound, the Black Gate hosts musicians from all styles and genres.

Invariably, the shared trait among Eclectics performers is originality. As the name suggests, the showcase champions diversity and authenticity.

Galway’s arts community is one of the best and most vibrant in the country. There is something of a disparity, however, between the number of quality artists we have in the city and the number of venues that encourage their work.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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Connacht Tribune

Corofin’s history makers return to a heroes’ welcome

Declan Tierney

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Gary Sice with his daughter Sadhbh after Corofin defeated Kilcoo to win the All-Ireland Senior Club Championship final at Croke Park last Sunday.

Bonfires blazed and hundreds lined the route as the classy Corofin champions made their way home to a rapturous reception on Monday evening following their historic All-Ireland success the previous day.

The stage was set in Dr Duggan Park, as supporters of all ages dressed in their saffron and green colours waited patiently for the team bus to arrive in the village – and when they eventually did, they were greeted by one of the most energetic homecomings ever witnessed.

This was their fifth All-Ireland club success and by far the most special – not just because the side achieved three-in-a-row, but because of the manner in which they pulled away in the first period of extra time.

Many of those loyal Corofin supporters were convinced that the reception might not have been as ecstatic, had they snatched victory in normal time.

Indeed, the huge Corofin support witnessed their side doing what they do best in that opening period as sub Conor Cunningham sneaked a goal from a rebound and heroes Ronan Steede, Dylan Canney, Liam Silke and Gary Sice put daylight between the sides.

Monday’s homecoming began as the team bus crossed the Shannon in Athlone around mid-afternoon and were even treated to a warm welcome in Ballinasloe along the route.

But it was when they arrived at around 6pm in Abbeyknockmoy that the celebrations began in earnest, as players disembarked from the bus with the Andy Merrigan Cup to the delight of the local GAA club and well-wishers.

See full coverage of the homecoming and that historic win in Croke Park – all in this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

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