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Arts & Culture

Pulitzer novelist reads at UL

Pulitzer prizewinning novelist, Richard Ford gave a rare public reading at the University of Limerick on Tuesday evening. Invited and introduced by Professor Joseph O’Connor, UL’s Frank McCourt Chair in Creative Writing, Ford read from his latest book, a quartet of overlapping stories, Let Me Be Frank With You and took questions from full-to-capacity audience of over 350. The event was Mr Ford’s first ever visit to the region and was co-sponsored by the University of Limerick Arts office and Limerick City and County Arts Office. Professor O’Connor commented, “Richard Ford is one of the world’s leading writers in the English language, an author of immense range and importance. To host him here at UL is a pleasure and an honour.” Meanwhile, the second cohort of MA in Creative Writing students, have commenced their studies at UL. The programme is taught by internationally successful authors including our Chair of Creative Writing, Professor Joseph O’Connor (author of the million-selling Star of …

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From the Banner to Hollywood

A SHORT film co-produced by two Ennis companies and shot in Feakle is set to go from the Banner to Hollywood, having wowed the international film festival scene. The film, The Long Night Followed, has just won an award for Best Short Narrative at the TOFF International Film Festival based in New York and has been selected for the Miami Independent Film Festival and Los Angeles CineFest. Preparations are also being made for the film to be shown at an upcoming festival in Berlin. Lead actor Zeb Moore was also nominated for Best Actor at the 12 Months Film Festival in Romania. Hopes are high that local film lovers will get a chance to see the film, with efforts being made to have it screened at the upcoming Richard Harris International Film Festival. Co-produced by Scorpion Films and Black Umbrella Productions, the film was written and directed by Bill Bradshaw. Bill said the team have been very surprised by the …

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Clare historians frozen out of 1916 commemoration

WITH Easter 2016 just over six months away, the Banner County has not allocated enough funds to commemorate the event properly nor involved those with the best knowledge of the period, it has been claimed. At This week’s meeting of Shannon Municipal District, Fianna Fáil’s Cathal Crowe criticised Clare County Council for the level of preparations to commemorate one of the seminal events in Irish history. He said he will be calling on the council to increase the amount of funding allocated five-fold and to involve some prominent local historians in the preparations. Regarding the sum he wants to see spent on commemorating the centenary, he told The Clare Champion, “I’d hope around €150,000. I just think €30,000 (the current figure) is insulting to those who fought for independence”. In general terms, this country fails to honour those who fought for Irish freedom, he believes. “I’m a realist; funding is limited for everything but this is the centenary. I lived …

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Clare teens board the John Lennon bus

A MUSIC video to accompany an original song written by a group of Clare teenagers, who just a few days ago did not know one another, could soon be seen by people all over the world. It certainly wasn’t “a hard day’s night” when eight youngsters this week got the chance to get on board the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus. The bus rolled into Ennis’ Glór car park on Tuesday and in partnership with Music Generation Clare, the lucky teenagers from all over the county were able to record and produce their own song and music video. That song and video has since been taken away by the tour bus’ on-board engineers to add the finishing touches before they put it on the internet. Emer O’Flaherty, development officer with Music Generation Clare, described the teenagers’ experience as “magical”. “It was a great day and the young people were just amazing. We had quite a lot of applications from young …

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Daniel’s book points to a happier life

An Ennis man, who has overcome mental health difficulties, officially launched his second book in Brogan’s Bar, Ennis, on Friday evening. Daniel Meehan, who suffers from schizoaffective disorder, found writing Wrath of the Dead to be a somewhat therapeutic and cathartic process. Diagnosed with this disorder at the age of 18, the 36-year-old, who lives in Pound Lane in a housing scheme run by Cluaid, believes his new environment is also helping his ongoing recovery. He is thrilled to complete his first novel, thanks to the development of his writing skills, which he finds to be a great coping mechanism for his condition. In fact, he says that writing is always something he can fall back on if he is going through a tough time. “The process of getting something down on paper helps me sort out all the jumble that is in my mind. It helps put a structure on my thoughts,” he said. Liam Minogue, who established the …

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Ennis woman’s Two by Two takes in €3.8m

A FULL-length animation film produced by an Ennis woman is the highest earning Irish movie this year, after taking in €3.8 million in less than two months in Ireland and UK cinemas. Moe Honan, now based in Galway and the owner of Moetion Films, has seen her feature-length animation movie Two by Two…Ooops, The Ark is Gone, which opened on May 1 in 427 UK and 62 Irish cinemas, become the top earner this year. The feature film, which was made for €8m – a fraction of the cost of US animation blockbusters – was co-produced by Moe and Emely Christians, Ulysses Films, Hamburg, Germany. The film was supported by the Irish Film Board, with partners in Germany, Luxembourg and Belgium. Two by Two…Ooops, The Ark is Gone is directed by Toby Genkel and Sean McCormack and follows the adventures of animals, including fictional nestrians and grymps, who sneak on board Noah’s Ark after being left off the passenger roster. …

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Clare Museum hits heritage standards

The Clare Museum is among seven of Ireland’s museums which have been recognised for high standards of management, care of collections and visitor services, by the Heritage Council under its Museum Standards Programme for Ireland (MSPI). Dublin City Gallery, The Hugh Lane and the Zoological Museum in Trinity College were awarded full accreditation, while Farmleigh OPW and the GAA Museum have successfully maintained their full accreditation. Three other museums – Clare Museum, Dublin Castle State Apartments OPW and Highlanes Gallery in Drogheda – have been awarded interim accreditation. Michael Starrett, Heritage Council Chief Executive outlined that Clare Museum submitted a high quality and thorough application and strove hard to complete any outstanding matters.  In particular, Clare Museum regularized the questions about collections ownership, documentation and disposal policy. “It has also prepared a sound Strategic Management Plan, something it did not have in 2007. The preparation of an SMP is one the more onerous tasks of the MSPI scheme and Clare …

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Full Fathom give new theatrical experience

FULL Fathom Theatre Ensemble and artistic director, Marie McNamara are delighted with an invitation to perform their new work Exposition at Glór for the Ennis Street Festival next Wednesday. Full Fathom Theatre began as Act Now..! in March 2014, with continuing weekly acting and theatre workshops in Glór for people with and without disability. It has evolved into an ongoing ensemble of actors in training, who have already performed two “works in progress” to invited audiences at Glór. Exposition is Full Fathom’s debut public performance; the story of a journey into the unknown and finding the freedom to enter into that risky place and discover untold riches, courage and an enthusiasm that begs to be seen; an excavation into potential and a celebration of exposure; As an experienced professional actor, theatre and arts and health practitioner and with an MA in drama-therapy, Marie is committed to the creation of quality theatre and the realisation of creative potential through equality, integration …

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