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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

2010 Cúirt International Festival of Literature

2010 is a remarkably exciting year for Cúirt as it turns twenty five. From its genesis as a festival dedicated to poetry, to the present day, it has always placed the writer and the reader at its core. Among the many names who will visit Galway to celebrate this special anniversary year are Joyce Carol Oates, Roddy Doyle, Ian Rankin, Claire Keegan, Robin Robertson, Richard Bausch, Josh Ritter, Richard Hawley, Tom Kilroy, Joseph O’Connor and Paula Meehan.

This 25th edition of Cúirt will cast a look back at the past with an evocative exhibition of recordings and images from the festival’s rich history. At this year’s festival, Colum McCann will give his first reading in Ireland since his National Book Award win for Let the Great World Spin.

Cúirt’s new associations with The New Yorker and Granta will see several irresistible voices in short fiction and memoir visit Galway to read from, and discuss their work.

In poetry, many renowned international voices will read from their work including Naomi Shihab Nye and Dionne Brand. Irish poets will be present in abundance, as 40 remarkable years of poetry publisher Gallery Press is celebrated with readings by a host of acclaimed Irish poets and playwrights. RTÉ Radio 1 will be present in force at the festival when Sunday Miscellany records a programme from the festival and Drivetime presents a special event at Druid featuring its acclaimed diarists performing some memorable diary pieces.

Alongside readings in poetry and prose, the packed programme features a wide range of launches, exhibitions, readings for younger people and special events in theatre and film, making a visit to Galway an irresistible prospect in late April.

Last year Jane Hirshfield described the festival as ‘a banquet of writing’. There is much to celebrate at this year’s banquet – visit Galway in April and celebrate Cúirt and the written word.

To receive the full programme of events and for further information:

E mail Tel +353 91 565 886

Booking opens from March 23rd on Tel 091 569 777

For press enquiries, please contact Gwen O’Sullivan:

E-mail or Tel 087 6601592

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Poetry at Kelly's Bar

Venue: Kelly’s Bar, Bridge Street, Galway.
Date: Sunday 25th April 2010
Time: 6.00pm
Tickets: €8

To mark the 25th anniversary of Cúirt International Festival of Literature, An Taibhdhearc are hosting an evening of Poetry, Music and Song, upstairs in Kelly’s Bar on Bridge Street, at 6pm on Sunday the 25th of April. The event is titled ‘Aí - Inspioráid Fileata’ which translates to ‘Poetic Inspiration’.

The impressive list of Poets, who will recite a selection of their own work, include: Micheál D. Higgins, Louis De Paor, Micheál Ó Cuaig, Máire Holmes, Seosamh Ó Guairim, Deirdre Kearney, Mary O’Malley, Neasa De Bhailís and Máire Uí Eidhin.

An Taibhdhearc are delighted to present such a talented group of writers for this poetry evening, most of whom hail from the Connemara area, and some who have made Galway their home.

Music and Song on the evening will be supplied by the fine Connemara Sean-Nós Singer Seosamh Ó Flaithearta, Galway based group ‘Vagus’, along with other special guests. MC on the night will be Mr. Tom Kenny.

Aí will kick off at 6pm on Sunday the 25th, which is the final evening of Cúirt Festival. Tickets for the event are priced at €8 and will be available at the door on the evening in Kelly’s.

For more info, contact An Taibhdhearc by phone at: (091) 562024/563600; or email:

Friday, March 12, 2010

Poetry Smackdown Wednesday 14th April in the Róisín Dubh

Poetry Smackdown Wednesday 14th April, 8.35pm onwards in the Róisín Dubh.

Two very different poets: Dave Rock & Miceál Kearney

There will also hopefully be a musician slot but still waiting on confirmation, so come down for the surprise element, and of course the OPEN MIC.

Bring a friend and a poem.

GMIT presents Creative Writing for Beginners with Susan Millar DuMars STARTING APRIL 28th TAKING BOOKINGS NOW

Susan Millar DuMars will give support, instruction and feedback to students who are interested in writing either fiction (short stories, novels) or poetry. The course takes place one evening per week (Wednesday) for 6 weeks from 7–9 p.m. The course commences on Wednesday, April 28th. Advance booking is essential. Places cost €85.00. For further details or to book a place contact GMIT, Dublin Road, Galway. Telephone 091-742145 or see
Susan Millar DuMars was born in Philadelphia in 1966 to a Belfast-born mother. She holds an MA in Writing from the University of San Francisco. Her poems and short stories have been published widely in the US, UK and Ireland. Susan's stories have been short-listed for many awards, and in 2005 she received an Irish Arts Council Bursary for her fiction. American Girls, a volume of her short stories, was published by Lapwing in 2007. Since 2003, Susan and her husband Kevin Higgins have organised the successful Over the Edge reading series, showcasing new writers. Susan teaches creative writing at Galway Technical Institute, Galway Arts Centre, Galway Mayo Institute of Technology and on the Brothers of Charity Away With Words programme. Big Pink Umbrella (Salmon Poetry, 2008) is the first full collection of her poetry. One of her poems has been chosen by editor, Mathew Sweeney, for inclusion in Best of Irish Poetry 2010 (Southword Editions). Several of her poems will feature in Landing Places: Immigrant Poets in Ireland, edited by Eva Bourke (Dedalus Press, March 2010). Her second collection of poems, Dreams for Breakfast, is just published by Salmon Poetry.

Cúirt launch of 'Faceless Monsters' by the Atlantis Collective

The Atlantis Collective launch their second collection of short stories on Friday April 23rd during the Cúirt Literature Festival 2010. Faceless Monsters contains new work from the eight members of the group who have been meeting on a weekly basis in the Galway Arts Centre for the past two years.

Following the group’s debut last year, which Des Kenny described as ‘an important collection’, the launch of Faceless Monsters takes place in bar Massimo on April 23rd at 6pm. Copies of the book will be available on the night and also through the Atlantis Collective website,

The Atlantis Collective are Colm Brady, Alan Caden, Dara Ó’ Foghlú, Aideen Henry, Trish Holmes, Paul McMahon, Conor Montague, and Máire T. Robinson. 

For further information: 086-2567306 (Máire)

Poet receives first recognition for his fiction

April 6th 2010

The Irish Writers' Exchange is proud to announce
the shortlist for the Dublin Book Project.

The short-listed entries are:
1. A Game of Two Halves - Dave Lordan
2. Cafe Society - Siofra Kavanagh
3. Art and Romance - Steven Callaghan
4. She is not sweet like Mary - Nuala ní Chonchúir

Congrats from Over The Edge to poet Dave Lordan who has received his first recognition for his fiction by being short-listed in this competition. Dave was a Featured Reader at the February 2006 Over The Edge: Open Reading and was shortlisted for the 2007 Cúirt Festival Over The Edge Showcase reading. We wish all of the short-listed writers well.

Marcella Morgan at North Beach Poetry Nights PLUS Poetry Slam

North Beach Poetry Nights welcomes Marcella Morgan as Guest Poet
on Monday 12th April at 9pm. in The Crane Bar, Sea Road, Galway.

Marcella Morgan lives in Galway and has performed at various venues around the city. She won 2nd Prize in the 2009 North Beach Grand Slam. She is reading at the Over The Edge showcase at Cúirt this year, and is in the final for the Cúirt Poetry Slam.

Poets wishing to take part in this April 2010 slam should bring 2 max. 3 minute poems.The April winner goes through to the North Beach Grand Slam in December. The prize for the Grand Slam winner is publication.

Door: 5 / 3 Euro

Info: John Walsh @ 091-593290

North Beach Poetry Nights gratefully acknowledges the financial support of Galway City Council

Launch of 'Three Times Daily' anthology at Cúirt International Festival of Literature

April 21st 2010 sees the launch of Three Times Daily,
a collection of works from a new generation of Irish writers.

Featuring an exciting selection of fiction, non fiction and poetry, Three Times Daily was guest edited by Dr. John Kenny (NUI Galway) and opens with an introduction by acclaimed Irish writer, Gerard Donovan.

The launch will take place as part of the Cúirt International Festival of Literature and everyone is more than welcome to come along for an evening of selected readings, music and refreshments.

Venue: Bar No. 8, The Docks, Galway City
Time: Wednesday, April 21st 2010, 5:30pm - 12am.

The contributors are Aileen Armstrong, Tristan Burke, Erin Buttner, Ryan Dennis, Jonathan Farrar, Niamh Fleming-Farrell, Cristina Galvin, Nicola Griffin, Michael Halloran, Orla Higgins, Alexander Lumans, Jessica Maybury, Jenny McCudden, Maura McElhone and Paige Morgan.

Mike McCormack has described Three Times Daily as 'A terrific anthology laced with edgy wit and imagination. Here are the confident, sparky voices of a new generation of writers.'

An Líne - The Line: A DIARMUID GOGGINS FILM Written by Kevin Lavelle

Kevin Lavelle was the 2007 Over The Edge New Writer of The Year. He has written the script for the short film An Líne - The Line, which has its debut on TG4 on Monday, March 29th @ 10pm.

An Líne
This is a new short film scheme from new Irish language writing and directing talent, on the theme of family. Written by Kevin Lavelle and directed by Diarmuid Goggins. Set in an alternative reality An Líne finds our central characters, the young couple Joe & Mary, in an Ireland of strict curfews and a dominating state system. Faced with an unexpected pregnacy and a system which grants or refuses a license to be parents, Joe and Mary struggle with a decision which will determine their place in a harsh, uncaring society.

For more see

'Impact' by Jenny McCudden


Impact by Jenny McCudden was the basis for the successful recent TV3 documentary of the same name, presented by Gay Byrne. Jenny was a participant in creative writing classes at Galway Technical Institute, facilitated by Susan Millar DuMars and Kevin Higgins and graduated with an MA in Writing from NUI Galway. She was a Featured Reader at the January 2008 Over The Edge: Open Reading and went on to be selected to take part in the 2009 Cúirt Festival Over The Edge Showcase reading.

Galway Arts Centre March Poetry Slam

On TUESDAY 30th March 2010 at 7pm Galway Arts Centre will host their last slam of the season before the Cúirt International Festival of Literature Grand Slam on Sat 24th of April.

What’s a Poetry Slam? Its live poetry with attitude: performers have three minutes each to wow the audience with their own original poetic creation. All subjects, styles and struts welcome. Come along and listen to the performers strut their poetic stuff & you may even be picked as one of our audience judges!

The winners of the GAC slams will go straight through to the grand slam.

Resident MC Pete Mullineaux sets the pace and the guest performers are Marcella Morgan and Gary King February’s winners. Admission is free and all are welcome

For further information, please contact Galway Arts Centre, 47 Dominick Street, Galway 091-565886 or

Silence & its dialects: A writing workshop with Robyn Rowland

A writing workshop with Dr Robyn Rowland AO ©

Music is enhanced by its necessary partner, silence. So too, the forms of poetry and of prose need space to breathe. Writing comes out of silence and returns to it, leaving a trace. In living, silence is both the shadow and the light. Meditation and prayer enter silence and carry it. In relationships, silence can be the threat of rejection; represent the loneliness of despair. Is our voice carried into absence? Secret-keeping arises too from silence and families are involved in shrouding truth. Deafness brings silence but what are the differences between this silence and peace? This workshop will discuss the many shapes of silence.

Each participant will be given notes to keep relating to the topic for the workshop, as well as copies of Robyn’s or other poems which exemplify the theme. The workshop involves a talk, followed by a meditative moment, a period of writing towards the topic and feedback for each participant in the group.

Dr. Robyn Rowland AO has published 9 books, six of them poetry. Seasons of doubt & burning. New and Selected will be published in 2010. Silence & its tongues (Five Islands Press, 2006) was runner up for the 2007 ACT Minister’s Judith Wright Poetry Prize. Robyn has won the Catalpa Poetry Prize and overall Writers Prize from the Australian-Irish Heritage Association, and the Jean Stone Poetry Prize. Robyn annually reads/teaches in Ireland at major festivals. She has also read in Portugal, Turkey, Serbia, Greece, the USA and the UK. Her work has been featured regularly on Australian National Radio, particularly on PoeticA and on The Spirit of Things covering her Irish experience of exile and belonging. She has judged a number of poetry competitions. Robyn has published non-fiction, journalism, and research papers as well as poetry.

An Honorary Fellow, School of Culture and Communication, University of Melbourne, Robyn was previously Professor of Social Inquiry at Deakin University, retiring in 1996 after breast cancer and burnout. She recently retired from her honorary position as Deputy Chair of the Board of the Australian Poetry Centre (2007-2008). Some of Robyn’s work, a short bio and photo can be viewed at Other Voices Poetry International, an invitation-only cyber anthology at

Venue: Foyles Hotel, Clifden
Date: Easter Monday, April 5th, 5 – 8 pm.
Fee: 20 euros

RSVP: Asap but by April 3rd. Numbers limited and needed for materials.

To: Dr Robyn Rowland 087 924 3814

Please provide email and phone contact details.

One Night, Ten Stories: Loose Lips returns to the Roisin Dubh

Wednesday, March 31st, sees the return of Loose Lips, with Tommy Tiernan and Mags Treanor. The pair launched Galway’s first ever Story Slam last month which saw huge success

Everyone has a story, and Loose Lips offer a stage and a microphone to members of the audience who can tell their story, provided it is true, unscripted and doesn’t take longer than five minutes. Each month’s session is inspired by a different theme, and this month the theme is ‘embarrassment & blunders’. The story slam takes place every last Wednesday of the month, and is limited to ten stories.

Last month saw a full house where an awestruck audience listened to stories related to the theme ‘siblings’. From the tragic story of one woman remembering her sister who was killed in a road accident almost 30 years ago, a young farmer on how, as a child, he and his sister blamed their younger brother for damage that they had caused on the farm, to one man’s story of how not having a sister meant having to invent one, one who gave him some great fashion advice! So whether you want to come along and listen, or tell your story, Wednesday the 31st is a night to put in your diary.

Given the popularity of this event and the fact that it is a small and intimate venue, advance booking is highly recommended.

If you wish to participate you can register on the night, when ten names will be pulled from a hat to decide who gets to tell their story.

Theme for this month’s Loose Lips event is Embarrassment & Blunders.

Venue: Roisin Dubh

Cover charge: 5 euro

Time: 9pm start, registration from 8:30pm

For more information please contact Mags on 087-6500700

Launch of programme for the 2010 Cúirt Festival of International Literature

The programme for this year's Cúirt Festival of International Literature is launched in the Meyrick Hotel, Eyre Square on Tuesday, March 23rd, 6pm.

The Cúirt website is available at