Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Fab Four

Millicent, Heidi, Adrienne, me - when I said "our" radio show on Francis Street - these are the Fab Four I was referring to. Adrienne Joyce's interview with her family on their memories of their own "Myra Bakery" on Francis Street in the 1940's was particularly amazing. Also, as you can see I don't believe you should have to comb your hair (or even sit up straight), to do radio - but then again nobody told me to be ready for a close-up...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Peter Prendergast of Monster Truck Gallery & Studios - interview.

One more experimental podcast - this time with Peter Prendergast of Monster Truck Gallery and Studios (, at 73 Francis Street. This interview was broadcast on 94.3fm ( on December 11th, as part of our radio show, "Life on Francis Street". Here's a link to the podcast:

How easy or difficult is that to download and listen to? All feedback welcome.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Granny Rock

It took me 7-ish years to get around to editing this "caravan session" down with Garage Band. It may not be perfect, and it may get a little mixed up towards the end, but still, Granny Rock, well - it rocks.

Kitty O'Brien’s (1915 - 2005) Greatest Hits. Recorded in the Caravan, Kilkee, County Clare, 2003.

1.Sing a Song
2.Where did you get that Hat?
3.Take Me Home
4.The Words of an Idle Moment
5.My Fairest Child
6.Chimney Sweep
7.Grow Little Mushroom
9.”Sea Fever” by John Masfield
10.“The Speech from the Dock” by Robert Emmet
12.Aurora Borealis
13.Portia’s ‘The quality of mercy is not strained’ - from “The Merchant of Venice”

Listen to the Podcast here:’s_Greatest_Hits._Recorded_in_the_Caravan%2C_Kilkee%2C_County_Clare%2C_2003..html

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Nice Moves rebroadcast on RTE Choice December 15th, 11pm

Tuesday 15 Dec
5 00 AMRadio Canada International (
Radio Canada International (

6 00 AMThe World Today (BBC World Service)
International news and current affairs programme from the BBC World Service.

7 00 AMPaths of Glory
This series will visit selected graveyards around the country in the company of members of the local community, historians, archaeologists and people with a special interest in th

7 30 AMLances To Lasers (BBC)
David Cook looks at the history and science of some of the most significant developments in medical technology.

7 45 AMMolly I Hardly Knew Ya
A series in which writers and poets focus on the subject of Molly Bloom - in particular their own fantasy view of who they think she really was.

8 00 AMI'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue (BBC)
BBC Comedy quiz hosted by the late Humphrey Lyttelton

8 30 AMIrish Whiskey
A series, presented by Pat McGrath, which traces the history and traditions of Irish whiskey.

8 55 AMRadio Australia Headlines

9 05 AMDocumentary On One
Documentaries from RTE Radio 1 first broadcast on Sunday nights at 7.02pm (

9 50 AMWorld Report (
A look at events making news around the globe.

10 00 AMGone Fishin' with Fergal Keane and Eamon Keane (2003)

10 30 AMHealth Check (BBC World Service)
The issues affecting the world of medicine and healthcare. (

11 00 AMCountryWide
Events, people and happenings that bring colour and life to communities, towns and villages across the country. (RTE Radio 1)

12 00 PM"Morning Edition " (NPR)
NPR's Morning Edition brings listeners up-to-the-minute news, background analysis, commentary, and coverage of arts and sports.

1 00 PMThe Poetry Programme
Presenter: Gerald Dawe Producer: Seamus Hosey RTE Radio 1, Saturday 7.30pm

1 30 PMPulse (Deutsche Welle)
Taking the Pulse of Youth Culture

2 00 PM"Shanks Mare" (
In Shank's Mare, Ella McSweeney goes walking around the country and introduces us to the people, flora and fauna she meets along the way. From stunning Donegal to the rough edges

2 30 PMInside Sweden (Radio Sweden)
"Inside Sweden" connects Sweden to the world and new immigrants to Sweden.

3 00 PMOutside the Box
A weekly radio magazine for and about people with disability

3 30 PMThe Strand (BBC World Service)
The daily programme which takes you on a worldwide journey through arts, culture and entertainment.

Profiles of Ireland's soccer legends. Presenter Producer: Colm Keane

4 30 PMThe State We're In (Radio Netherlands Worldwide)
The State We're In (TSWI) brings you stories from all over the world, covering important global matters as well as seemingly small issues, because they too can have a big impact.

5 00 PM"Europe Today" (BBC World Service)
A slice of life from European cities through the eyes of the BBC's contributors. Presented by Audrey Carville.

6 00 PMWorld Football (BBC World Service)
A hard hitting half hour bringing you up-to-date with the issues, the stories and the passion behind the World's most popular sport. Legendary British commentator and football exp

6 30 PMMaking Sense of It All 03.08.2008
This series looks at topics about which so much is written, that people don't know what to believe and what not to believe. Presenter: Pau ric DempseyProducer: Peter Mooney

7 00 PM"Outlook" (BBC World Service)
Human interest stories behind the headlines.

7 30 PMRadio Netherlands Worldwide

8 00 PMRadio New Zealand International

8 15 PMKorean Broadcasting
Korean Broadcasting (

8 45 PMVatican Radio (
Vatican Radio (

9 00 PMVoice of Russia (
Voice of Russia (

9 30 PMDeutsche Welle

10 00 PMAll Things Considered - NPR (US)
The programme determines to get the day's big stories on the air, and to bring them alive through sound and voice. For two hours every weekday, "All Things Considered" hosts Ro

11 00 PMNice Moves (
Nice Moves presented by Deirdre Mulrooney, is a new 5-part series which traces the history of the body on stage in Ireland. Irish people have always danced, but our first record

11 30 PMGreat Educators (1994)
Presented by Frank Flanagan, Produced by John Quinn

Monday, December 7, 2009

TDR: The People Have Never Stopped Dancing book review

Here's a little book review I wrote earlier, for The Drama Review (MIT Press) on The People Have Never Stopped Dancing, by Jacqueline Shea Murphy - a very interesting book of Native American Modern Dance Histories. Just received it, in the current Winter 2009 edition, in the post today.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Harrods - a Spiritual Home away from Home

A Day & a Half-ish in London: Hot off the Heathrow express (should have got the tube really - next time when I'm back to try on the dress, see left), we lounged around Harrod's for the afternoon, like two children in a toyshop. It was amazing! Dollhouse cafes, Egyptian Sphynx staircases, Willy Wonka-style yum yums, Sushi if you want it, basically - whatever your heart desires! The furniture, the anitiques, the grandfather clocks, the fashion! This incredible dress, which I think would be perfect for a Marina Carr play (plastic feathers, bird-like) is by a new Dutch designer Harrods are launching called Iris Van Herpen. It only costs £10,000. Another one was £15,000. I was so tempted to try it on, which the sales assistant was inviting me to do "Why don't you try it on?" she offered. But by that stage we had wiled away so much time in the other dimension known as "Harrods", that if we didn't leg it right away we risked missing the show we had come to London to see - Fabulous Beast Dance Theatre's breathtaking Rite of Spring at London's Coliseum. The old man I sat beside in the Upper Balcony (we were just 2 of a 2,700-strong audience) shared that the other 2,698 were a much younger audience than usual, which (according to him), is usually a sea of grey hair.

Here is a link to more info on Iris Van Herpen's "Radiation" philosophy of this dress:

Here, I'll quote some:

"RADIATION INVASION: We are all surrounded by invisible radiation waves, a fact that is both frightening and very interesting according to the designer. What if, in the near future, we could see these radiation waves? Van Herpen draws inspiration from this theory and the ability to control (attract and reject) the radiation waves around our bodies. There is an underlying beauty to this whole new external dimension and van Herpen translates her fascination for radiation waves into a future beauty image.

“ I think that in the future people will find ways to be able to see radiation which will develop a new dimension apart from the body. Imagine we could attract and reject radiation waves as a magnet. “Being beautiful” will then get a totally new and more extended form” says Iris van Herpen."

PS: Tacky, but sad, below that's a statue of Dodi & Diana, near Harrod's left-luggage staircase, with the title "Innocent Victims". Sorry so out-of-focus. Can I blame my iphone? I think so!

Random Pop Life Images, and a Curious London Street SIgn.

Daniel, Morgan John. Damian Hirst 1992. Identical Twins in Pop Life, Tate Modern

Una & I stumbled upon these two dudes at the Pop Life exhibition, Daniel and Morgan John, and guess what, they were part of an art work! A talking, breathing, moving, living art work. Talk about interactive... They said the chairs are rather uncomfortable, but that's probably how Damian, who they haven't yet met, wants it. He cast them via photographs. This art piece is worth £1.2m?! I was wondering what it would be like having this art piece in my living room. Ha ha! I mean, you'd probably have to feed them and everything. It would be a little more work than a house-plant! Would you have to sing to them? (You know how some people sing to their plants). They were reading a hospital study about identical twins, which they were part of. One of them showed me the top sheet of his multiple-choice questionnaire twin study, but declared he didn't want me to see the page about bowel movements (!). I wouldn't blame him, neither would I. They didn't divulge what they do for a living, but they did tell us that another set of twins (they do 4-hour shifts), were both CEO's in an insurance company. They wore their own clothes - one of them had two identical suits, so they wore that "to keep costs down". I thought it would be rude to ask them how much they were getting paid for it, but look below, everything is a discreet google away these days. £7.60 per hour. They have to wear identical socks, shoes, everything. I didn't ask them about the undergarments, but you'd imagine that would be part of the overall aesthetic too. Ha ha it's brilliant! Una, very astutely, came up with the bright idea that Damien should now cast Jedward in the piece. Well, they're at a loose end, aren't they, and love the whole celebrity circus? Perfect synergy! Remember it was Una Kavanagh who came up with the idea though. This was a great exhibition. If you are in London - pop in.

"London's Tate Modern museum is mounting an exhibition on Pop and post-Pop art (titled, appropriately, Pop Life), and one of the pieces, a pair of street art-crusher Damien Hirst's dot paintings, requires a rotating cast of identical twins. The Tate is willing to pay you and your twin £7.60 per hour (approx $12.66) or £30.40 per four-hour shift (approx $50.67), pending your sufficient verisimilitude, enthusiasm and (if applicable) consent from your parent or guardian.

Incidentally, don't miss the video of Hirst explaining what the job entails to The Guardian, and then, if you're not put off by his comment that "Identical twins are kind of like a crazy aberration," click over to the Tate website to apply. There's no mention of visa requirements, so presumably American twins could head to London and spend the winter earning a living as art."


& for more:

Noam Chomsky - my hero.

Monday, November 16, 2009

David McWilliams & Contemporary Dance? Yes, Actually.

An unlikely combination, but here they are, side by side, in a paper I gave at Dance Research Forum Ireland's 1st International Conference at University of Limerick in June 2006 entitled "Freeing the Body, Freeing the Nation". So much has changed in Ireland since then, that it's high time for a follow-up paper on "the body" of our new negative equity nation... Believe it or not I first set eyes on this publication last Friday, November 13th (lucky for some!), at the launch of DRFI's 2nd International Conference Proceedings in the swish new Millstream Common Room at University of Limerick, by Davide Terlingo. Well - better late than never! Click twice on the pages to enlarge them, (please bear with me while I figure out how to master the layout issue) and join me in mulling over what the sequel to this paper would be...

Monday, November 9, 2009

The amazing Julia Judge in Film Ireland

How lovely to be reminded of my good pal from Rockaway, NY, Julia Judge, by her friend Pat Schneider who's in Dublin for a visit. I brought Pat for a glorious November stroll on Dunlaoghaire Pier, watching the glistening changing light on the water, the sailboats, and Howth head way across Dublin bay yesterday. As we were walking back in, one of those cute little sailboats we were admiring must have got performance anxiety or something, lost the run of itself, flapped. and crashed into the pier. (!) A crowd gathered. I tried to think of advice (take down the spinnaker? trim the sails?), but luckily the two young guys had pushed off again before I had to utter. They seemed oblivious to the round of applause they got from the assemblage of Sunday strollers. I was glad it wasn't me in the boat! On the way back into the big city, we dropped into the amazing box in the docks, and perused Wunderkammer of Curiosities. More water glistening, and Boland's Mills. We wandered through Martha Schwartz's Disco dancing light sticks, ogled Daniel Libeskind's Grand Canal Theatre, and then Pat offered that Santiago Calatrava's new Samuel Beckett Bridge was like a harp, piano strings, or, um, yes - a wishbone. Yeah! It's pretty nice, and now that you mention it Pat, rather poetic. What can I say, my neighbourhood is shaping up alright...

Here is the interview I did with Julia for Film Ireland, many moons ago (who's counting?! Certainly not me!). Julia is a film fiend, who has produced films, run film festivals, and worked as assistant to the one and only Marty Scorsese for many of his masterpieces. Julia took me for a stroll that day, a little while back, around that fountain at Lincoln Center Theatre (where she works), just like in The Producers. (Sorry this is an old photocopy with some of the edges shaved off, but you can get the gist of it):

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Drama Review/ The People Have Never Stopped Dancing Review

Volume 53, Number 4, Winter 2009 (T 204)

E-ISSN: 1531-4715 Print ISSN: 1054-2043

The People Have Never Stopped Dancing: Native American Modern Dance Histories (review)

In lieu of an abstract, here is a preview of the article.

The poignant title of Jacqueline Shea Murphy's excellent and enlightening book refers to the notorious and controversial late-19th-century Ghost Dance phenomenon. Promising to invoke a peaceful end to white American expansion, the Ghost Dance, an apocryphal Christian/Native hybrid, was adapted in various guises among several Native tribes. Some Ghost dancers wore "ghost shirts" decorated with magic drawings purported to make them invulnerable to bullets—a notion of invincibility that contributed partly to the tragic death of 153 Lakota Sioux at the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre. Challenging what seemed like defeat, Shea Murphy sets up her framework by quoting "trickster lawyer" Wilson Weasel Tail's theory that "it was the Europeans, not the Native Americans that expected results overnight" (1). Shea Murphy thus initiates us into this alternative worldview of "complex understandings of time, causation, ancestral connection" (1), as opposed to the prevalent Eurocentric one of causality and finitude. By exposing them, she encourages the reader to shake off the orientalist tendencies that have gotten in the way of understanding Native American dance.

Tracing the link between government policies, anti-dance policies, and the acquisition of Indian land, Shea Murphy explores the complex role of religion in Native American dance. She alludes to transitional late-19th-century Delsartian theories—which advocated dance as a tool for accessing an inner truth, and hence de-demonizing Native dance: "movement and

Monday, October 26, 2009

Irish Monsoon Wedding - Part One.

Here is a link to my first ever podcast! "Irish Monsoon Wedding" Part One,
featuring the amazing Brendan O'Brien, speaking about his daughter, Emma, above, who works for the Edith Wilkins Streetchildren Foundation in Darjeeling, India, and her wedding during Monsoon Season to Roshan Rai, also above, who is involved in "Mineral Springs" Organic Fair Trade Tea there. (Direct from Darjeeling's Mineral Springs Farmers' Co-operative, the tea is available in Dublin and Cork Oxfam Shops, as well as in Cork's Quay Co-op). Brendan shares his thoughts and feelings on his only daughter's imminent wedding, here:

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Happy Diwali

This in haste - today is the day you can lure wealth and prosperity in your door by lighting candles, lamps, and even switching on electric lights, according to what is says on the BBC website, quoted below.
Worth a try!:

"Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights, is the most popular of all the festivals from South Asia, and is also the occasion for celebrations by Jains and Sikhs as well as Hindus.

The festival of Diwali extends over five days. Because of the lights, fireworks, and sweets involved, it's a great favourite with children.

The festival celebrates the victory of good over evil, light over darkness, and knowledge over ignorance, although the actual legends that go with the festival are different in different parts of India.

The Times of India summed up the modern meaning of Diwali:
"Regardless of the mythological explanation one prefers, what the festival of
lights really stands for today is a reaffirmation of hope, a renewed
commitment to friendship and goodwill, and a religiously sanctioned
celebration of the simple - and some not so simple - joys of life."
Times of India editorial

In Britain, as in India, the festival is a time for thoroughly spring-cleaning the home and for wearing new clothes and most importantly, decorating buildings with fancy lights.

The date of Diwali is set by the Hindu calendar and so it varies in the Western calendar. It usually falls in October or November.

Diwali is a New Year festival in the Vikrama calendar, where it falls on the night of the new moon in the month of Kartika.

Business people regard it as a favourable day to start a new accounting year because of the festival's association with the goddess of wealth.

Diwali is also used to celebrate a successful harvest.

The name of the festival comes from the Sanskrit word dipavali, meaning row of lights.

Diwali is known as the 'festival of lights' because houses, shops, and public places are decorated with small earthenware oil lamps called diyas. These lamps, which are traditionally fueled by mustard oil, are placed in rows in windows, doors and outside buildings to decorate them.

The lamps are lit to help the goddess Lakshmi find her way into people's homes. They also celebrate one of the Diwali legends, which tells of the return of Rama and Sita to Rama's kingdom after fourteen years of exile.

In towns (and in Britain) electric lights are often used in Diwali displays.

In India oil lamps are often floated across the river Ganges - it is regarded as a good omen if the lamp manages to get all the way across.

Fireworks are also a big part of the Diwali celebrations, although in recent years there has been a move against them because of noise and atmospheric pollution and the number of accidental deaths and injuries.

Two Goddesses in particular are celebrated at Diwali: Lakshmi and Kali.
Lakshmi, wealth and prosperity
For many Indians the festival honours Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth.

People start the new business year at Diwali, and some Hindus will say prayers to the goddess for a successful year.

Some people build a small altar to the goddess and decorate it with money and with pictures of the rewards of wealth, such as cars and houses.
Celebrating Lakshmi Hindus will leave the windows and doors of their houses open so that Lakshmi can come in. Rangoli are drawn on the floors - rangoli are patterns and the most popular subject is the lotus flower. This because images of Lakshmi traditionally show her either holding a lotus or sitting on one.

There is much feasting and celebration, and the Diwali lamps are regarded as making it easy for Lakshmi to find her way to favoured houses.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Marty Kelly - Art London 2009 Catalogue Note

Like the best of contemporary dance, Marty Kelly’s recent paintings exude a dreamy ambiguity – that stuff that exists in between the words. So it makes sense that he’s finding inspiration with a couple of contemporary dancers in Barcelona – bypassing the intellect to get straight to some visceral feeling and truth.

Far from his home on Donegal’s remote and windswept Inishowen peninsula, contemporary dance stopped wandering painter Marty Kelly in his tracks while he was travelling through Switzerland a few years back. Crossing paths with Quebec’s Dave St. Pierre Dancers was a revelation to him. “It was amazing to me. There was a connection between my work, our intentions, the common music we used and were inspired by, and the dancers”. Up until then Kelly had been travelling through places like Sarajevo in search of inspiration. After this serendipitous meeting, he began to find something matching “the incredible human spirit that lasts on and burns on in these conflicts” - the truth he wanted to paint - in dancers’ bodies.

Contemporary dance is all about getting back to a deep inner truth buried within the body. Was it the pure emotion of contemporary dance, unencumbered by words that drew him in? Had his eureka moment to do with the rawness, the strange, tough beauty which he felt, correctly, was “never allowing romance to fully overtake the reality, but elements of both”? For how can you do tutu’s after contemplating atrocities, and places of conflict as Kelly did in recent years? Far from the prettiness of Edward Degas’s limbering-up ballerinas, Kelly began to immerse himself in the more unlikely stuff that contemporary dance celebrates: “…the beauty in the awkward poses and the in-between. A moment before an action or a bowed head after a clatter of movement”.

Kelly began to work in his Barcelona studio with contemporary dancers Merryn Kritzinger, and Ygal Tsur – videoing them, photographing them, and painting them. They listened to his intentions, and to his music, and danced. (Kelly couldn’t imagine painting without music – at the moment it’s classical minimalists Max Richter, Johan Johansson, John Williams, and Nathan Larson).

It’s no surprise then that through that downright honesty of muscles, physical exertion, and the sweat of contemporary dance Kelly is right in there, into the non-verbal, and the eloquently visceral. Here, where there is no posing. Kelly rubs out faces, details, smudges them, and re-creates his models into floating, glunky, out-of-focus ethereal creatures. Essences. I imagine him distilling these essences out through their movement as if in some sort of alchemical filtering process. On his canvas then elphin and otherworldly presences emerge.

Just like the power of dance revealed itself to him in composer Johann Johansson’s collaborations with dancer Erna Omarsdottir, “exposed and raw and honest, sensitive and very real art”, this is beautiful work in flesh and blood from a sure hand and mind. Sure like the hand and mind of a dancer, perhaps.

So what do I see here of contemporary dance? The interiority of it; the “right now” of it; the velocity of it; the stubborn refusal to be just “pretty”; its contrary nature; its home in the ambiguous, fudged-up in-between; its dynamic energy - its vitality.

Like in contemporary dance, the vagueness, and the moments of emptiness in these paintings, add up to an enticing open invitation to the viewer to project him or herself into the work of art.

By-passing head-energy, the intellect, the blah blah blah/ parler pour rien dire of words, Marty Kelly gets right underneath misleading externals to plug in to the power of the unspoken. Accessing the raw, visceral emotion of alive, pulsating bodies Kelly unleashes that power through these floating bodies, submerged bodies, bodies in transit, bodies in motion, and bodies without background. Harnessing the anarchic energy of contemporary dance onto his canvas, in his latest work Kelly accesses and conveys a rich and yes, incredible human spirit. That sort of thing is elusive, but through his strategies Marty Kelly has caught us a beautiful glimpse of it here.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Guerilla Girls, Irish Art, and the Age of Aquarius...

I was at a very thought-provoking, and indeed incendiary talk by the "Guerilla Girls" ( out at Theatre M in UCD last night. As well as the two "Guerillas", wearing, yes, Guerilla heads (must be hard to breathe in there, let alone talk!) other panelists included Irish Art expert Catherine Marshall and the inimitable journalist Susan McKay. (We were honoured to have Susan involved in "South Africa Week" at the Helix, which I co-curated a few moons ago - who's counting?). The Guerillas had compiled some pretty shocking statistics about the paltry representation of women in our national Art collections, in the management of these institutions (I'll get them and quote them later), and the one stat I can recall (it obviously made a big impression on me), is that while women make up 70% of Humanities students, they only comprise 10% of faculty. Go figure! Eloquent statistics, indeed. What's more (how well I know this), women artists are barely even recorded in our archives - here are a few I know of personally: Erina Brady, June Fryer, Ninette de Valois, Doreen Cuthbert... Catherine Morris, who is reclaiming the lost history of Alice Milligan (watch this space in National Library of Ireland next year), was also there, pointing out how challenging it is to document these lost women artists. Archiving and reclaiming their stories and work is like an exercise in extreme lateral thinking, as they don't exist in any official archive.
So does this mean that in official history, they are "personae non grata"? In my experience, finding these invisible histories can start with a letter to The Irish Times, 90 phone-calls, and then take you into living rooms around Dublin and fading old family photograph collections. What does that say about how this state values and archives women's art? I bet there are no photographs of WB Yeats lost in family photo albums. Oh no. That's "le patrimoine". But what about "la Matrimoine"???
Susan McKay, as part of National Women's Council has initiated a "Spot the Woman" campaign to highlight any inequities that may exist here in all areas of work (not just the Arts). Thought feminism was an outmoded, outdated concept? Apparently not! Guerilla Girls are at University of Ulster, and the opening of their new Guerrilla Girls project about art in Ireland, opens at Millenium Court Arts Centre, Portadown, Northern Ireland this Friday. Go guerillas!

Check this link for the statistical, unemotional, objective facts I mentioned:

Well all I can say is "roll on the age of Aquarius" as described by Marie, in a wonderful and yes, enlightened blog comment, below (thanks Marie!).

Marie's Great Comment to the previous blog:

"It's the dawning of the age of Aquarius - like that old song from "Hair"- we are increasingly measuring the success of our society by women's standards. In other words, how happy and creative and communicative we are as a society is a more meaningful measurement than that old macho bugbear, Gross Domestic Product! Our government is failing to value the things that really mean something to us - health, education, the arts - and instead is focused on all those competitive macho indicators like who has the most money, cars, property, and face-time with other competitors to strut like cockerels at Davos and the rest. Perhaps the arts will be more inventive and effective in communicating these kinds of protests to a larger audience than those weaker people lying in the neglected hospitals of this country! Keep it up, Deirdre! End of rant. :-P"

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Arts = The Goose with the Golden Eggs; Morning Ireland, and Ingeborg Bachmann

Launching the campaign against Arts cuts on Morning Ireland yesterday, Colm Toibin asked the presenters to name a writer from The Cayman Islands (ummmm.... not coming up with anyone), or from Austria. Well, Austria has a few. But us, we are steeped in the good fortune to be synonymous internationally with James Joyce, Samuel Beckett, Brian Friel, JM Synge, WB Yeats, Marina Carr, Kate O'Brien, Flann O'Brien, Martin McDonagh, the list goes on. And on and on... Money couldn't buy good publicity like that for "brand Ireland". Who has poor Iceland got, to change the international focus from their financial blunders? And as Toibin astutely pointed out, Irish writers, and the Irish Arts, unlike the church, the bankers (and so on), have never let us down. So where is the logic in now letting the Arts down, our best Ambassador, with crippling cuts? Let's stay synonymous with those great names, and keep them coming, by supporting the campaign against Arts Cuts. Because that would be cutting off our nose despite our face...

Here is my point in response to the report on the Morning Ireland site:

23/09/2009 10:14:25 Deirdre Mulrooney
In answer to your question - Ingeborg Bachmann is a lovely writer from Austria - I'm surprised Colm Toibin doesn't know of her work. For example "The Thirtieth Year" - well worth a read. However I absolutely agree with Colm Toibin's sentiments this morning on your show. The Arts are simply the goose with the golden eggs for this country. Don't kill the goose!

& here is a link to the campaign - join right now!:


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Jenny Roche's Gradcam Talk on her PhD research

We had dance-artist Jenny Roche come in today to Gradcam to talk about her PhD, "Moving Identities: Multiplicity, Embodiment, and the Contemporary Dancer", which is within a hair's breath of completion at Roehampton University. Fascinating! Particularly about the agency of the Independent Contemporary Dancer... I think her methodology, and the whole issue of embodiment and how to deal with that in the academic world floored everybody. Plus it was nice to see her three solos, choreographed by John Jasperse, Jodi Melnick, and Liz Roche (her sister) once again. Where does the choreographer end, and the dancer begin? Food for thought. Thought and movement...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Dance review: Baryshnikov at the Broad Stage

Dance review: Baryshnikov at the Broad Stage

Posted using ShareThis

This is totally amazing. Ana Laguna at 53, and the beautiful Misha at 61. Look at it! Read it!

Abandoned Beatles Ashram, Rishikesh, India 2009

Seen as it is 09-09-09, and the launch date of the Beatles digitally re-mastered back-catalogue - here are some recent pix of the abandoned (except for the guy who opens the "No Entry" gate - for the modest sum of 50 rupees) Maharishi Mahesh (RIP) ashram in Rishikesh, India. Rishikesh, btw, is like India's answer to Lourdes, Fatima, and Knock. And it was to this very place that the Beatles came in 1969, did a meditation course, and dreamed up THE WHITE ALBUM. Seriously - this is the place! Look it up on Youtube! Mia Farrow, Donovan, and The Beach Boys were here too. Dig the "Meditation Eggs". And how about that post-box? We ran into a couple of German devotees of the guru, who reminded us that the entire New Age Movement started right here, forty years previously, with the Beatles 1969 sojourn. Too groovy! TTFN.
Happy nine-nine-nine!