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Archive for the ‘Festivals’ Category

All-Ireland Poetry Day is today – look for your county’s listing of events.

Our poet presidential candidate will be canvassing in Tralee today, and later on talking to the UCC Philosophical and Law Societies but I’m sure he’d squeeze a reading in if asked.

On the poetry front I’ve been reading Kinsella’s wonderful, wonderful A Dublin Documentary, the account of his origins, a beautiful collection of prose pieces, photographs, sketches, letters and poems. I love the album feel of it.

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Summerfest

Not only has church fete season kicked off, guaranteeing a glorious summer of fairy cakes, second-hand fondue sets and the smell of freshly mown brass bands, hurrah, but for the next couple of months there’s event-gorging aplenty.

My wishlist at the moment, with budget, work, childcare and dogcare out of the picture:

May 
Pat Boran reading from his memoir The Invisible Prison in Blanchardstown (tomorrow, 20th May)

June
La Traviata on 5th and 6th June

clashing partially with

1st – 6th June 2010
I want to be at Natasha Walter, Antony Beevor, the Gallery Press 40th, David Mitchell, Joe O’Connor and pretty much everything actually.

Dunlavin Arts Festival
18th – 20th June
Never been but is only an hour away and a few forebears farmed there.

July
5th – 10th July 2010
Anthony Horowitz, the Fish readings, Leanne O’Sullivan, Peter Sirr. Perhaps Michael Palin. 

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The book chosen for April 2010 is Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray and also in April, Bewleys’ Cafe Theatre are putting on an adaptation of his ‘The Birthday of the Infanta’. Here’s a story I haven’t thought about in years. It was published in A House of Pomegranates in 1891, and this illustration is from a Bodley Head edition of this plus The Happy Prince and Other Tales. My copy (from my fabulous grandmother) was a 1977 reprint, gorgeously illustrated by Charles Mozley and sadly stained by a nosebleed on p61. I’d say I welcomed that nosebleed in the wake of ‘The Nightingale and the Rose’ (sobs) – so identifying – and come to think of it there were a lot of sobs at ‘The Happy Prince’, too,  I still think about those stories all the time, and ‘The Selfish Giant’, and ‘The Fisherman and his Soul’, but I detested ‘The Birthday of the Infanta’ and I thought of it as a story for adults which had accidentally got into a children’s book – I don’t think I’d ever read a story before in which the protagonist was such a complete bitch. And yes I know she was only twelve and royal types aren’t traditionally the best adjusted du monde, but reading fiction is not about making excuses for people. It was such uncomfortable reading I only read it a few times, whereas I’m word-perfect on the rest. To paraphrase Little Boots, reading is my remedy, remedy, so I’m revisiting it in April, or before. 

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