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Westport Festival a real family event

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Arts Week with Ciaran Tierney

Last year’s inaugural Westport Festival of Music and Performing Arts was so much fun that the only question on revellers’ lips as they left the picturesque grounds was whether or not the organisers would decide to run it again for another year.

The two-day festival had been marred by poor weather on the Saturday and sluggish early ticket sales until the sun broke through on the Sunday but, thankfully, word soon filtered back after it ended that plans were being put in place for another knees-up at the end of this month.

They have kept with the family-friendly vibe which proved such a runaway success in 2012 – children under 12 get in for free when accompanied by an adult – and have an increased emphasis on food for an event which takes place on Saturday and Sunday, June 29 and 30.

Once again, the emphasis is on quality live Irish music, with a few international stars thrown in, and while there might be minor gripes that the likes of The Waterboys, Imelda May, and Damien Dempsey were on the bill 12 months ago, there can be few complaints about the standard of the acts on offer.

Indeed, West of Ireland music fans should be thrilled that a true Irish legend, Christy Moore, will headline the main stage on the Saturday night. The former Planxty and Moving Hearts man, joined as ever by the trusted Declan Sinnott, was perhaps one of the few glaring omissions from last year’s stunning bill.

And, given their strong Galway connections, there can be few complaints from these quarters about the return of Mike Scott and The Waterboys. They will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the legendary Fisherman’s Blues album (recorded in An Spideál) at the end of the year, but if they can repeat the energy and enthusiasm of their 2012 Westport set they should ensure quite a buzz around the superb 400-acre site.

The grounds of Westport House looked as though they were perfectly designed for a music festival 12 months ago and it’s a delightful prospect for Galway music fans to have such an eclectic mixture of artists performing just a few kilometres up the road again.

It’s not just about Irish acts, either, as they have added the Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club, the Blind Boys of Alabama, and 1980s superstars ABC to the main stage bill for the Saturday night. The prospect of seeing veteran Cuban musicians belting out the tunes, next to a historic old castle, really whets the appetite following the fine Afrocubism gig at the Galway Arts Festival’s Big Top a couple of summers ago.

Few will begrudge a return to the main stage for Imelda May, either, after her storming rockabilly set 12 months ago. It was the Dublin singer’s last gig before she gave birth to her first child and all the more memorable for the sense of joy her band brought to the set.

The Sunday night bill will be headlined by Elvis Costello and The Imposters, who rarely visit the West of Ireland, while there should also be plenty of 1980s nostalgia in the air when veterans Squeeze take to the same stage earlier in the evening.

There is a strong Galway presence at the Mayo festival, too, with performances by both The Stunning and gifted Athenry singer Julie Feeney on the Marquee Stage on the Saturday; while the new Galway band, The Cabin Collective, play the main outdoor arena on the Sunday afternoon.

The Cabin Collective must have mighty connections, because they got their music career off to a flying start with an appearance on RTÉ’s Late Late Show before producing a full live set at An Taibhdhearc in Galway for two nights during Cúírt.

This eight-piece have become known as a West of Ireland ‘super group’. The musicians who make up the band need no introduction as they include Leo Moran of The Saw Doctors, Tuam native Noelie McDonnell, former Waterboy Anthony Thistlewaite (who now lives in Gort) and Keith Mullins.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

CITY TRIBUNE

Ceramic artist who found her creative home in Galway

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Tatiana Dobos...creative space in Galway.

A ceramic artist who made her home in Galway a decade ago is one of twelve creative pioneers to feature in a new series of abstract short films available for viewing on the TG4 Player.

Samhlú Croí Cruthaitheach is a season of twelve commissioned abstract short films featuring artists and creatives – among them Moldovan born Galway-based ceramic artist Tatiana Dobos.

Tatiana was born in 1982 in Bujor, and studied all kinds of ‘numbers’ till she was 27, when she discovered clay accidentally while doing sculpture in an art studio.

She describes it as being like arriving home for the first time. She had to quit my job, erase everything she studied and start her forever journey with clay which, since then, is a constant learning and discovering process.

She came to Ireland in 2010, and Galway felt like home from the first walk on its streets.

“Ten years later I can say that Galway is the true and only home to me,” she says.

“My studio is located in Knocknacarra, very close to the sea where I cycle almost every day for refreshing swims, and also close to Barna Woods, a place for reflection and reconnection. It feels really inspiring to be so close to Connemara and Burren, places that invite to rediscovering oneself,” she adds.

From her little studio, Tatiana creates ceramic artworks inspired by human emotions.

She seeks to materialize in her works the mechanisms of the inner battles, at the same time exploring the anatomy of the aftermath.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Land, Sea and Mind at heart of Kinvara show

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Some of the works from a new exhibition by Patrick Kenneally, set for the KAVA Courthouse Gallery in Kinvara

An exhibition of new work by artist Patrick Kenneally opens at the KAVA Courthouse Gallery in Kinvara, on Saturday week and runs until Sunday, August 8, from 10am to 4pm daily.

Of Land, Sea and Mind is a new series of oil paintings by the artist which is inspired by the mind’s adaptation and reaction to the restrictions placed on the mind and body by lockdowns over the past year.

“As an artist, being in and with the landscape is a vital stimulation for the creative process. You listen to the silence and vastness of the Burren. You take in the salty air of the Atlantic breeze,” he explained.

“The mind, without the direct stimulation of the environment you are so used to being in, will stitch you a new patchwork of colours, compositions and perspectives based on memory, thoughts and feelings. These “mindscapes” allow me to revisit the places that are restricted to me,” he added.

The paintings are a reflection of the self in isolation; a boat on the horizon, a windswept tree in the Burren, a single cloud in the sky, a rolling wave. The self is not present in the landscape but is present with the landscape.

 

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Galway-made box office hit returns home to Film Fleadh

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Galway hit…a scene from Two by Two Overboard!

A Galway-made animation movie which outshone the big-budget studios at the box office is making a homecoming of sorts this weekend – in the open air.

Two by Two Overboard!, produced in Galway by Moetion Films, was the number one film at the UK box office in November 2020.

The film has also proved a big hit at home with top three spots in all Irish cinema during Christmas 2020.

This weekend, Galway audiences will be treated to a special showing during the Galway Film Fleadh on Saturday at noon, in the specially constructed open-air cinema located in Father Burke Park.

Distributed by eOne Entertainment, the film opened in multiple locations across the UK in late October 2020 – but now as restrictions ease, it is set for release in France, Spain, Germany, Norway, Denmark and Estonia and elsehwere.

Made in 3D animation, the film tells the story of young Nestrian Finny and his best mate Leah, a Grymp, who accidently fall off Noah’s ark and are swept out to sea.

Adrift on a flood, the two misfit castaways struggle to reunite an unorthodox family, out-run a volcano, and negotiate a peace deal on a creaking Ark.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
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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