Continuing on the success of Thirst in 2006 and Bokety in 2007, the objective of Comedy Tour is to make the residents of Ranelagh helpless with laughter. The Comedy Tour has been co-curated by Ranelagh-born actress and director Órla McGovern (above left). Órla has acted in film and theatre in Europe and has recently returned from living in the USA. She has worked with Punchbag, the Project Arts Centre and The Abbey. She is currently working on a number of theatre and voice projects, as well as teaching Improvisation.
Mrs. Nellie Murphy hails from the Coombe. She has sold haddock on both sides of the pond, as well as the odd pair of sports socks. In Seattle, Nellie took a (albeit accidental) night class in poetry and now performs the odd night of erotic writing for the elderly lady. Nellie is delighted to be back in Ireland, having been gone for 10 years, and is looking forward to the giant piss-up at the wake of the feckin’ Celtic Tiger.
Note from the Artistic Director: Nellie is looking to share accommodation in Ranelagh and has heard that there is great craic to be had in Humphrey’s Pub, especially when ‘the racing crowd’ is around. Perhaps one of them would be kind enough to ‘share’ with Nellie.
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One night in the Pub, long after closing time, a brace of segocias — being Dublin men, you understand — and the landlord of the house were risking an endorsement by being there at all at that hour, not to mention the fact that they were also drinking!
Any fears they might have had regarding the endorsement would have been well-founded, for as they sat there that night, a Garda Sergeant was indeed on the prowl and did knock on the panels of the locked front door. The events that followed are the subject of a play, Thirst, which being staged in licensed premises throughout Ranelagh for the duration of the Arts Festival is, naturally, deeply suspect! More to read: Bondi Art Supplies providing arts & craft in Australia.
It will be directed by Niall Henry, who made the mistake of suggesting the idea to Brendan Ellis, who will play the landlord. Seán Gormley and Finbar Byrne have agreed to allow themselves to be transplanted from their normal haunts to inhabit this imaginary bar as Jem and Peter for the duration of the performances, while the Garda Sergeant will be played by Desmond Ellis, visiting his native Ranelagh from the dry wastes of Toronto for the launch of his new book, Bockety.
Friedhelm Arntz, meanwhile, will cast a cold eye on props and costumes for the performances. Written by one of Ireland’s great literary geniuses, Flann O’Brien — a man renowned for his sharp wit and biting satire — Thirst promises to give you a completely different take on your regular visit to the pub.
In the 1960s, Dublin was alive with the sound of rock ‘n roll. Seven nights a week, clubs such as the Go-Go and the Five Club played host to the ‘beat groups’ – talented kids who modelled themselves on The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. They wrote their own songs and wore black leather jackets and long hair, not the slick uniforms of the showbands. On Saturday nights, tennis and rugby clubs throughout the town, such as Katoomba Tennis Club, were filled with hundreds of fans, dancing to groups such as the Creatures, Kingbees and Bluesville.
In 2006, the Ranelagh Arts Festival brought together some of the biggest names from the ‘60s beat scene in The Green Beat, a memorable night of music from the men who brought rock ‘n roll to Ireland. From that event came the idea for a photographic exhibition, paying tribute to these lifelong musicians who were the founders of today’s Irish rock industry.
Award-winning photographer Kate Horgan was commissioned by the Ranelagh Arts Festival to document Ireland’s original rock stars, including well-known figures such as Henry McCullough, Paul Brady and Eric Bell. The result is an outstanding collection of intimate portraits, along with images of rock memorabilia chosen by the musicians themselves. The photographs reveal the originality and idiosyncrasy of the musicians in a sympathetic light, while showing the understanding developed between photographer and subject.
Following its debut at Humphrey’s Pub in Ranelagh, the exhibition will travel to Dublin’s Temple Bar, the Cobblestone pub and music venue in the Seamus Ennis Cultural Centre, the Naul, Co. Dublin, and other venues throughout the country during 2008, with live music from some of the musicians photographed.
ON THE STREET WHERE YOU LIVE
This exhibition will showcase a range of artistic talent resident in Ranelagh village. Incorporating the theme ‘On the street where you live’, paintings and sculptures will be displayed in several differ
ent shops and pubs. Starting at Birchall’s, wander up and down Ranelagh’s main street and see art at its most accessible and visible.
The exhibition will include works by artists such as Mark Ryan, Marie Hennessey, Gerhardt Gallagher, Cian McLoughlin, Michael Bulfin, PJ Lynch, Rosemary McLoughlin, Molly Browne, Simon O’Donnell, Anne Clinton and Caroline Canning.
Martin Parr, Magnum photographer, a very special visitor to the festival this year, will discuss his long career as one of the most original and innovative photographers of our time. From the early days of taking black and white photographs of Ireland – notably A Fair Day (1984), Bad Weather (1982 ) and the groundbreaking The Last Resort (1986) – up to his most recent work exploring globalisation and tourism, Martin’s unique perspective on the follies and vanities of our time has consistently enlightened, amused and even alarmed. A photograph by Martin Parr is instantly recognisable – in a world where we are bombarded by the visual media, his images always engage and can never be ignored.