Theatre & Dance, Street, Family at Kilkenny Arts Festival
Rosemary Collier – Director & CEO - Theatre & Dance, Street, Family Programme Curator
Rosemary Collier – Director & CEO
It’s been a delight putting together my first festival programme. Kilkenny is a city that offers unique experiences for festival audiences and I’ve worked closely with our specialist team of curators to bring you a range of exciting work from world-class artists in every strand from Classical Music to Literature, Craft to Wired, Visual Art to Music, Film to Theatre & Dance and – for the first time – Opera!
This year’s programme showcases the extraordinary range of spaces in Kilkenny and reveals this city in new and exciting ways and I hope that – whoever you are – you’ll find something inspirational in it for you.
Director & CEO
Programming for children and families is always a delight. This year’s programme features a mix of workshops and special performances across all the art forms that will keep little ones (and not so little ones) delighted and enthralled. I’ve sought out leading practitioners in a whole range of fields to create some wonderful opportunities for young audiences this year. junk ensemble, one of Ireland’s most exciting contemporary dance companies, will present a truly unusual set of dance workshops/performances, while renowned composer Brian Irvine will lead a merry band in his unique composing and songwriting workshops, and a host of fine visual artists and writers will deliver workshops and performances across the festival.
It’s all about the Bard this year, with nine performances of As You Like It by Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, who come to Ireland for the very first time. In years gone by, Kilkenny Castle played host to Shakespeare productions during the festival, and I’m very excited to bring such an iconic international theatre company to Kilkenny to perform Shakespeare outdoors here once more. In a special series of related sessions, Fintan O’Toole and Derbhle Crotty will illuminate Shakespeare’s life and times, while Abbey Theatre director Fiach Mac Conghail discusses the challenges of directing Shakespeare with Globe director James Dacre.
CoisCéim is one of Ireland’s leading contemporary dance companies, led by award-winning choreographer David Bolger. The beautiful dance piece Swimming with My Mother is a delightful and tender work which will inspire audiences both seasoned and new.
Kilkenny Arts Festival has a long and rich history of presenting classical music programmes that feature leading musicians from all over the world. For the first time, that loyal festival audience has the opportunity to experience opera at the festival as we’re delighted to be working with Cork Opera House to present their production of Henry Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas. Early Music and Baroque music programming has been central to festival programmes for many years and this dynamic new arrangement of Purcell’s classic is bound both to woo new audiences and to raise a few eyebrows!
Aerial dance, saxophone choirs, acrobatics and good old-fashioned comedy make up this year’s STREET programme. The emphasis is firmly on fun and festival-goers can look forward to some night-time street partying with the irresistibly handsome Italians of the Badabimbumband!