Tag Archives: Limerick

Adventures in Web Browsing

I’ve spotted a few interesting bits and pieces around the interweb over the last few days – some newsy bits, others just interesting so I thought I’d just shove em all together to share them with y’all (I work with someone from Alabama so it’s starting to rub off – HIGH FIVE!!).

First off all is the very sad news of the passing on Ken Monaghan. Ken was the last surviving nephew of James Joyce and was a true Joycean. He was a founding member of the James Joyce Centre and built it up to become internationally recognised as a centre in Dublin City for all things Joycean, it also became the home of Bloomsday in Dublin.

In recent years, despite Ken’s ill health he remained part of the Centre’s extended family and this year continued his tradition of reading from Wandering Rocks during the Bloomsday readings in Meeting House Square. He truly was a great face for the Joyce family in Dublin and I know that many people across the world remember receiving a very warm welcome from Ken during their visits to the Centre. He will be truly missed by the Joycean community and I’m surely fondly remembered. More info on Ken here and also you can sign the Centre’s online book of condolences on their Facebook page.

Next up, some news from home! Limerick is embracing this year’s Culture Night with some wonderful events. In particular, the newly and fabulously revamped Milk Market, complete with an all weather roof is hosting a Sing Out and Raise the Roof for Fun event. According to the Milk Market website, the event will involve:

“Shoppers, stall holders, passers-by and you will be encouraged to join in Limerick’s Culture Night Choir, led by musical director Liz Powell, to ‘Raise the Roof’. No previous experience is necessary, it’s all just a bit of fun!

There will be two sessions on Friday, September 24th. One at 5.00pm and one at 6.00pm.

Can’t sing? Come along anyway, you’ll enjoy the sessions…

…..and for the hungry and thirsty, Peter Ward of Country Choice is offering a hot plate of delicious food with a glass of wine for €10.”

Looks like a lot of fun and I love the fact that many venues and organisations are embracing Culture Night as a chance to get the community involved with their activities rather than just opening the venue up for free. The Night after all is really about getting the public involved with culture rather than a touristy event. I’m disappointed that I’ll be stuck in my car driving home when the event is on, but no doubt I’ll be in the market the following morning to pick up some goodies! More info on Culture Night events around Ireland here.

And finally, I just spotted this article on the Irish Times website. Ireland is a country steeped in state censorship history, but it looks like family can also play a part in censorship too. The poet Rita Ann Higgins had planned on publishing a book of poetry but had to cancel the publication and destroy the initial print run when her brother voiced upset at references to a child hood event. It seems odd that Higgins has gone to the press over this, saying “I’ve never had a cross word with Joe. The irony is that he had asked me to write something on the occasion of an honorary doctorate which he received some years ago from NUI Galway for his work in business.”

I would imagine this was something they should have discussed during the draft stages but I guess it just demonstrates how difficult it can be having a sibling as a writer. I remember attending a talk by an Irish writer who commented that her mother and family were often nervous around her as they were afraid of becoming characters in her work. I think it’s probably quite difficult to not draw on your own personal experiences when you’re writing. It’s a pity she had to lose out on so much money wasted on the initial print run, hopefully she will be able to raise the money for the edited edition.

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Filed under Bloomsday, Dublin, Limerick, Writing

NCFA – National Day of Action

Today is the National Day of Action for the arts in Ireland. Anyone interested in campaigning against funding cuts for the arts sector in the next budget are encouraged to contact their local representatives and TDs in an effort to show them how important the arts are to Ireland.

The importance of the arts is difficult to weigh up, not many theatres or art galleries turn over a tidy profit, in fact some don’t turn any profit at all and even more run into a loss every year. I would imagine every arts organisation in this country relies on government funding of some sort. But what does the country get back as a result – well €2 billion in tourism! And the Dept of Sports, Culture and Tourism (formerly Arts, Sports and Tourism) has an annual budget of €501 million, so that’s a pretty good return on the tax payers’ investment isn’t it! About the only return we do get!!!!!

The arts community has been very active in efforts to keep their funding since the beginning of this disaster (can’t bring myself to type the R word), including campaigns by artistic heavyweights such as Brendan Gleeson and Colum McCann. Making your voice heard is very easy to do and takes all of a few clicks, you can visit the NCFA website: http://ncfa.ie/, click on “Email Your TD”, select your constituency and fill in your details and hey presto the already worded email will get sent to your local representatives. I sent my email last week and got two fairly generic “your comments have been noted” emails from Charlie O’Connor and Conor Lenihan (I guess he had other matters on his mind!), and was nicely surprised with an albeit obviously pre-formatted, fairly positive response from Pat Rabbitte, which I’ve pasted below:

Thank you very much for your e-mail regarding the need to protect funding for the Arts in the forthcoming Budget.

I wish to confirm that my colleague, Mary Upton T.D., as Party Spokesperson for the Arts, fully recognises the need to sustain investment in the Arts and we appreciate the very important role of the Arts and Culture in our society.  Unfortunately Arts and Culture is often seen as an easy target for cuts in straitened economic times.  As you will be aware, between 2008 and 2009 funding for the Arts Council was cut by 16%.  At that time the Labour Party expressed our concerns for this level of cut in the Arts budget.

A 2009 Report commissioned by the Arts Council stated that the Arts contribute a total of €782 million to the economy and provide 26,519 jobs.  This sector is therefore of great importance to the economy.  But, the value of Arts and Culture cannot be measured in economic terms alone – as the Arts nurture the cultural and spiritual elements of society, enhances our reputation abroad and provides much needed  “lift” in difficult and challenging times.

At a time when all Government spending is under review, the Labour Party will continue to seek to protect funding for this vital area of our society and our economy.

Best regards

Pat Rabbitte T.D.

And if you don’t want to take a politician’s word for it, the NCFA have put together a video explaining just why the arts are worth saving:

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Welcome to Quality Waffle

Welcome to my blog!

I don’t know exactly what I’m going to do with it – all I know is, I have to write a franchise blog as part of my job and it focuses on franchise opportunities (shameless links I know – but hey, any help with SEO makes my life easier) entrepreneurship and small businesses which can prove quite interesting. Another quick plug for our new Irish franchise portal!

However, I have a massive interest in the Irish arts scene. I love going to plays, films, events and I love reading so why not have a blog about that!! Also, I’m originally from Limerick, so I’m sure there will be a couple of posts about Limerick!

I’m going to be involved in the upcoming Bloomsday festival in Dublin, so keep watching this blog to find out all the juicy gossip from the Joycean world – that sounded incredibly nerdy!! But if you want to find out more about cool events going on for Bloomsday – June 16th for those of you not in the loop, then visit the James Joyce Centre’s Bloomsday listing to find out more.

Anyways, I was recently at two plays in the Project Arts Centre – Love and Money and The Bird Sanctuary (as part of the Dublin Gay Theatre Festival) – so when I get the chance I’ll put some thoughts up about those.

I’ve diverted from my usual diet of Irish writing to read some Cormac McCarthy (his name is Irish tho’!). I’m currently reading “All The Pretty Horses” – getting on ok – it’s a grower – any thoughts anyone?!

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Filed under Dublin, Limerick, Websites, Writing