CULTURE IRELAND GB18: APRIL IN GREAT BRITAIN
Ireland's history was the backdrop to two important Culture Ireland GB18 projects this April.
At the start of the month The Abbey Theatre concluded its run of The Plough and the Stars at London’s Lyric Hammersmith. The acclaimed production—which continues in Dublin’s Gaiety Theatre this week—received 4 stars in The Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Observer and The Guardian, which praised the production as “a bold, discomfiting Irish babel”.
Then on April 5th, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of The Good Friday Agreement, Poetry Ireland presented an evening of extraordinary poems and music set against a backdrop of powerfully striking images. The Further Shore: The Journey to Good Friday, 1998 played to a sold-out house at London’s Barbican Centre and featured two Olivier award nominees Brid Brennan and Ciaran Hinds. The event, hosted by Olivia O’Leary and directed by Lynne Parker, was attended by Orla Kiely, Catherine Heaney and poet Martina Evans, among others. The event was seen in Dublin in 2017 and travelled to Belfast for a special performance, directly after London.
There was an increased presence of Irish authors and writers at the 47th annual London Book Fair this month where Literature Ireland met with the literary agents of some of Irelan d's finest writers and met with international publishers from countries around the world, including China, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden. At the fair, news of forthcoming titles from a range of Irish writers was shared, including new works by Sally Rooney, John Boyne, Eoin McNamee, Sebastian Barry and debuts by editor and broadcaster Sinéad Gleeson and Tramp Press publisher Sarah Davis-Goff. The enhanced Irish presence at the Book Fair reflects the increasing profile of the new generation of emerging Irish writers.
In other Culture Ireland GB18 events, CREATE presented the work of six leading Irish practitioners in the area of collaborative art and architecture as part of the Collaborative Arts Partnership Programme (CAPP), Heart of Glass Staging Post in association with Tate Liverpool. Dr. Ailbhe Murphy, Director of CREATE commented: “We had a brilliant, stimulating week at Tate Exchange Liverpool engaging with members of the public, housing activists, and the European CAPP network. GB18 was a really valuable opportunity to showcase the depth of collaborative art and architecture in Ireland prompting many conversations with, and links between, artists and architects in both Ireland and Britain.”