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An Evening with legendary African-American activist, Dr. Angela Davis

Pavilion Theatre


We were honoured to present Dr.Angela Davis, who talked about women, race and class, her work in human rights and her hopes for the planet in the post-Trump era. A leading figure in the one million strong Women's March on Washington in January 2017, she is a writer, scholar, teacher and activist.

Angela Davis is world renowned for her ongoing work to combat all forms of oppression in the USA and beyond. Once on the FBI's most wanted list, she has borne personal witness to all of the struggles of our era. She is the author of ten books, including Angela Davis: An Autobiography; Women, Race, and Class; Freedom Is a Constant Struggle: Ferguson, Palestine, and the Foundations of a Movement; Blues Legacies and Black Feminism: Gertrude "Ma" Rainey, Bessie Smith, and Billie Holiday.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Sunday March 25th 2018.

Donal Ryan and Sarah Winman in conversation with Evelyn O'Rourke

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Join Evelyn O'Rourke when she hosted Donal Ryan and Sarah Winman in conversation.

Donal's new novel From a Low and Quiet Sea is the fourth from the multi-award-winning author of The Spinning Heart. From war-torn Syria to small-town Ireland, the lives of three men are drawn together in the most unexpected of ways. Farouk's country has been torn apart by war. Lampy's heart has been laid waste by Chloe. John's past torments him as he nears his end. The refugee. The dreamer. The penitent. Drawn together in the most unexpected of ways. In Sarah Winman's latest book, Tin Man, a triad also takes centre stage as she explores the relationship of Ellis and Michael, who have been inseparable since boyhood, and Annie, who walks into their lives, changing nothing and everything. Tin Man is a novel infused with memories and a story about alternative lives that might have been lived had circumstances been different.

Donal Ryan is from Nenagh in County Tipperary. His first three novels, The Spinning Heart, The Thing About December and All We Shall Know, and his short story collection A Slanting of the Sun, have all been published to major acclaim. The Spinning Heart won the Guardian First Book Award, the EU Prize for Literature (Ireland), and Book of the Year at the Irish Book Awards; it was shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Desmond Elliott Prize, and was recently voted 'Irish Book of the Decade'. His fourth novel, From a Low and Quiet Sea, will be published in March 2018. A former civil servant, Donal lectures in Creative Writing at the University of Limerick. He lives with his wife Anne Marie and their two children just outside Limerick City.

Sarah Winman was an actress, working in theatre in her twenties and early thirties but by 1992 she says she 'started having my own words' and turned away from other people's scripts and realised she wanted to write a novel. It would be another 20 years until that novel was written and published. While taking a course at City Lit 'Exploring Fiction', she realised she was already writing what went on to become her highly acclaimed debut, When God Was A Rabbit, a story about childhood, eccentricity, the darker side of love and sex, the pull and power of family ties, loss and life and love. Sarah's second novel, A Year of Marvellous Ways is about the relationship between the eighty-nine year old Marvellous, who lives alone in a remote Cornish creek, and Drake, a young soldier left reeling by the Second World War. When his promise to fulfil a dying man's last wish sees him wash up in Marvellous' creek, broken in body and spirit, the old woman comes to his aid.

Evelyn O'Rourke was born in Dublin and joined RTÉ after studying drama and English at Trinity College, Dublin.

This podcast was recorded on dlr LexIcon, Level 4 on Sunday March 25th 2018.

Alice McDermott in conversation with Siobhan Campbell

Pavilion Theatre


In one beautifully observed, quietly absorbing novel after another, Alice McDermott has made the insular world of New York's Irish Catholic immigrants in the first half of the 20th century her own. And in focusing tightly on a close–knit community of ordinary people, she leads us to a deep understanding of the human condition. The Ninth Hour, McDermott's eighth novel, is about an order of nursing nuns and the needy families, elderly shut–ins, disabled invalids and strapped widows they care for in a predominantly Irish Catholic neighbourhood of Brooklyn. Alice McDermott is one of America's greatest contemporary writers, and, in this conversation with poet Siobhán Campbell, she will explore her literary genealogy and her writing life in a troubled USA.

Alice McDermott was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1953. Her first novel, A Bigamists' Daughter, was published to wide acclaim in 1982. That Night, her second novel, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. A film version of That Night was produced by Warner Bros. and released in the spring of 1992. At Weddings and Wakes, her third novel, became a New York Times bestseller. Michiko Kakutani of The New York Times praised McDermott's "rich, supple prose" and Bruce Bawer called At Weddings and Wakes "a haunting and masterly work of literary art" in his review for The Wall Street Journal.

She received her B.A. in 1975 from the State University of New York at Oswego, and her M.A. in 1978 from the University of New Hampshire. She has taught at the University of California at San Diego and American University, has been a writer-in-residence at Lynchburg and Hollins Colleges in Virginia, and was lecturer in English at the University of New Hampshire. Her short stories have appeared in Ms., Redbook, Mademoiselle, and Seventeen. The recipient of a Whiting Writers Award, she is currently writer-in-residence at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. She lives outside Washington, with her husband, a neuroscientist, and three children.

Siobhan Campbell is a poet and critic. Author of five books of poetry, she publishes regularly in literary journals.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Sunday March 25th 2018.

Jackie Kay and Paula Meehan in conversation with Doireann Ní Bhriain

Pavilion Theatre


Fiere is the title of one of Jackie Kay's many collections and in Scots Gaelic it means equal or friend. In Irish the word "fior" means true. We are thrilled to bring together two of the truest, most engaging and humane voices in poetry, Scottish Makar Jackie Kay and our own Paula Meehan, for a very special joint event in which they discussed the connections made by and value of poetry in all of our lives. Jackie read poems from her collections including the recent Bantam, The Adoption Papers, OffColour, and Fiere. Paula read from Geomantic, and Mysteries of the Home as well as dipping into her selection of 10 Poems for Ireland.

Jackie Kay was born in 1961, in Edinburgh. Her biological parents – a Scottish mother and Nigerian father – gave her up for adoption to a Glasgow couple. She has a clutch of literary prizes that span her entire working life from the Eric Gregory award in 1991 to the Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust book of the year award in 2011. She was made MBE in 2006 and is currently professor of creative writing at Newcastle University. "She makes great poetry and soon she will have others making poetry too." Alan Taylor. "She is a much-loved poet and author in Scotland and beyond, and her work sometimes deals with challenging subjects, and she has a particularly Scottish brand of humour."

Paula Meehan was born and reared in the north inner city of Dublin. She studied at Trinity College, Dublin and at Eastern Washington University in the United States. She has published six original collections of poetry, the most recent, Painting Rain, in 2009. She has written plays for both adults and children, including Cell and The Wolf of Winter. Music for Dogs:works for radio, collects three plays concerned with suicide during the economic boom years in Ireland. Selections of her poetry have been published in French, Spanish, German, Galician, Japanese, Estonian, Greek, and smaller selections have been published in other languages, including Irish. She has received the Butler Literary Award for Poetry presented by the Irish American Cultural Institute, the Marten Toonder Award for Literature, the Denis Devlin Award for her poetry collection Dharmakaya, published in 2000, and the PPI Award for Radio Drama for The Lover. Dedalus Press have recently republished Mysteries of the Home, a selection of seminal poems from the 1980s and the 1990s. She was honoured with election to Aosdána, the Irish Academy for the Arts, in 1996. She was Ireland Professor of Poetry, 2013 to 2016.

Doireann Ní Bhriain is an Irish independent radio producer.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Sunday March 25th 2018.

The Battle for Home

Pavilion Theatre


Sixty years on from the mass migration wrought by World War Two, it seems as if Peter Berger's statement that "homelessness is the condition of modernity" is coming true. With millions of people escaping war, famine and environmental catastrophe across the world, can everyone find a home? Is it possible for us to shift our thinking so that we live in the homes that we need as we progress through our lives? What if home ownership were not the norm? How does home and the way in which we shelter affect how we act in our public and political lives? Join economist Dan O'Brien, architect and environmentalist Darran Anderson and Syrian architect and writer Marwa Al Sabouni for this thought-provoking discussion chaired by Professor Siobhán Garrigan, Loyola Chair of Theology at T.C.D.

Marwa Al-Sabouni was born in 1981. She has holds a PhD in architecture. She has written several architectural articles which were published at RIBAJ, Architectural Review, Wall Street International Magazine and other outlets and some of them were translated into German and French. She is the author of The Battle for Home published internationally in April 2016 by T&H. This work has been widely covered by the mass media including cover story in the Guardian, Financial Times, The Times, The Huffington Post, New York Times, BBC Radio(s) several flagship programs, CNN, and many other in UK, AU, USA, and Europe. It was reviewed in TLS, Fraser Institute, Open Democracy, LA Book Review, The Christian Science Monitor and many others. The book was selected by the Guardian as one of the best architectural books in 2016. She has been invited and participated in UN organized conferences and workshops regarding the post-war situations in Syria in Berlin, Beirut, Basel, and Geneva. Also participated via Skype in conferences for the Policy Exchange and Architecture Foundation in London, SIX in Colombia, and Cultural Innovation Day in Matera/Italy. She has done a TED Talk shown at TED Summit 2016 which has been viewed online more than 900K since its release. She had co-run an architectural studio in the pre-war period in Homs. Al-Sabouni has won first place on National level in the UN-Habitat Competition for rehabilitation of mass housing for her design proposal for rebuilding Baba Amr/Homs/Syria in 2014. She runs with her partner the portal of Arabic Gate for Architectural News www.arch-news.net the world's first and only website dedicated to architectural news in Arabic and the winner of Royal Kuwaiti award for best media project in the Arab World 2010. She teaches architectural design in a private university in Hama/Syria.

Darran Anderson is an Irish writer residing in Scotland. He has written for a host of publications on the intersections of urbanism, culture, technology and politics. He has lectured for the British Council at the Venice Architecture Biennale and has given talks for the London School of Economics, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the London Festival of Architecture, the Robin Boyd Foundation and other groups.

Dan O'Brien is Chief Economist at the Institute of International and European Affairs, Ireland's leading foreign affairs think tank. He is also Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at the School of Politics and International Relations at University College Dublin and a columnist and economics analyst for Ireland's largest media organisation, Independent Newspaper Group.

Siobhán Garrigan is Loyola Chair of Theology | Head of School - Religions, Peace Studies and Theology at TCD. Prior to TCD, she worked at the University of Exeter, Yale University, the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology and the Open University (Belfast). She teaches by looking at issues of social justice, using the insights of ritual studies, philosophical theology and systematic theology to respond. By looking at theology's role in social and political difficulty, her research aims to highlight the many ways theology can also foster dialogue across the boundaries of difference, particularly regarding ecumenism, poverty and matters of identity, such as gender and racial discrimination.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Sunday March 25th 2018.

The Outward Eye

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In The Outward Eye, we brought together Sandeep Parmar, Siobhán Campbell and Nessa O'Mahony who meld poetry, history and the lived world in socially engaged work that calls out and talks back to forces that threaten and undermine. Each sees her role as a poet as one that actively faces down political and media rhetoric.

Hear all three rail against complacency as they extol the power of poetry in moments of political crisis, reading and discussing their work.

Sandeep Parmar is a BBC New Generation Thinker, a poet and a scholar of British and American modernist literature. She received her PhD from University College London and an MA in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. She has published two books of poetry: The Marble Orchard and Eidolon, and scholarly works on modernist women writers Nancy Cunard, Hope Mirrlees and Mina Loy. Her edition of Mirrlees's poetry appeared from Carcanet in 2011 and she's currently editing the Selected Poems of Nancy Cunard. She teaches in the English department at the University of Liverpool where she is Co-Director of the Centre for New and International Writing.

Siobhán Campbell is a poet and critic. With an MA from University College Dublin and a PhD from Lancaster University, she pursued post-graduate study at NYU and the New School, New York. She joined The Open University, Dept. of English from Kingston University London, where she was Associate Professor in English Literature and Creative Writing and Course Director MA and MFA, Creative Writing. Author of five books of poetry and co-editor of the forthcoming book of essays on the work of Eavan Boland, Siobhan Campbell's work has received awards in the National Poetry Competition and the Troubadour International Competition and is the recipient of an Arts Council award and the Templar Poetry Prize. She is featured in the canonical anthologies of the past two decades including Identity Parade: New British and Irish Poets, Women's Work: Modern Women Poets writing in English and The Field Day Anthology of Irish Literature.

Nessa O'Mahony is a Dublin-born poet. She has published four books of poetry – Bar Talk, Trapping a Ghost, In Sight of Home and Her Father's Daughter. Novelist Joseph O'Connor described In Sight of Home as 'a moving, powerful and richly pleasurable read, audaciously imagined and achieved' whilst poet Tess Gallagher said of Her Father's Daughter that 'words are her witching sticks and she employs them with beautiful, engaging intent, the better to make present what has preceded and what approaches.' O'Mahony won the National Women's Poetry Competition in 1997 and was shortlisted for the Patrick Kavanagh Prize and Hennessy Literature Awards.

This podcast was recorded in dlr LexIcon, The Studio on Saturday March 24th 2018.

Ctrl - Alt - Resetting Democracy in the 21st Century

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Chaired by Margaret E. Ward, panellists Danny Dorling, Liam Kennedy, Elizabeth Day and Ivana Bacik discuss the fact that this is not a moment to take democracy for granted. The 2016 emergence of Donald Trump, Brexit and populism in Europe didn't signal the start of something new. Rather, they announced a long simmering, troubling sense of powerlessness. How did we get here? How are Western values shifting and how can government truly respond? How do we arrive at a point, once again at which people with ostensibly opposing ideological viewpoints have, in actual fact, more in common than separates them? And is it possible to have "too much" democracy?

Danny Dorling joined the School of Geography and the Environment in September 2013 to take up the Halford Mackinder Professorship in Geography. He was previously a professor of Geography at the University of Sheffield. He has also worked in Newcastle, Bristol, Leeds and New Zealand, went to university in Newcastle upon Tyne, and to school in Oxford. Much of Danny's work is available open access (see www.dannydorling.org). With a group of colleagues he helped create the website www.worldmapper.org which shows who has most and least in the world. His work concerns issues of housing, health, employment, education, wealth and poverty. His recent books include, co-authored texts The Atlas of the Real World: Mapping the way we live and Bankrupt Britain: An atlas of social change.

Professor Liam Kennedy is Director of the Clinton Institute for American Studies at University College Dublin. He has diverse research interests and teaching experiences, spanning the fields of American cultural and media studies, globalisation and Irish-US relations.  He is the author of Susan Sontag, Race and Urban Space in American Culture and Afterimages: Photography and US Foreign Policy. He is currently researching contemporary Irish America and also preparing edited books on the election and presidency of Donald Trump and on diaspora and diplomacy.

Elizabeth Day is an author and journalist. She is a feature writer for numerous publications in the UK and US. She is a contributing editor for Harper's Bazaar. A versatile and wide-ranging writer, her work incorporates everything from celebrity interviews to crime reportage. Her debut novel Scissors, Paper, Stone won a Betty Trask Award. Her follow-up, Home Fires was an Observer Book of the Year. Her third, Paradise City was named one of the best novels of 2015 in the Observer, Paste Magazine and the Evening Standard, and was People magazine's Book of the Week.  Her fourth novel, The Party was published in 2017.

Ivana Bacik is the Reid Professor of Criminal Law, Criminology and Penology. She has a Law degree from Trinity College Dublin and an LL.M. from the London School of Economics. She practises as a barrister, and teaches courses in Criminal law; Criminology; and Penology at Trinity. She is also a Senator for Dublin University. Her research interests include criminal law and criminology, constitutional law, feminist theories and law, human rights and equality issues in law.  She is a Labour party member of Seanad Eireann.

Margaret E. Ward is an entrepreneur, financial journalist and broadcaster. In 2005, she set up Clear Ink, now a global brand communications agency.  Over 25 years as a print journalist, she mainly worked for The Irish Times as a business and personal finance columnist and investigative reporter, and as The Sunday Times' first Money editor in Ireland. She was awarded the Law Society of Ireland's Justice Media Award for social and campaigning journalism for an 18-month investigative report and a Science and Technology Journalism award, both while working for The Irish Times. Mags has been a business presenter on Newstalk and is a regular contributor to RTÉ, TV3, BBC and National Public Radio (USA). In 2014, she was nominated to the RTÉ Board by the Oireachtas committee on communications.  She also sits on the board of European Movement Ireland.

This podcast was recorded in dlr LexIcon, The Studio on Saturday March 24th 2018.

Secrets of Superhero Science

Pavilion Theatre


Have you ever dreamed of having superpowers? Well modern science is getting closer and closer to unlocking the secrets of these powers! Get ready to hear about sources of inspiration, years of dedication and a future with super inventions. Barry Fitzgerald is a research scientist author and a huge fan of the superhero films and comic books. He sees a future where science will advance and develop technologies that could yield superpowers. When he's not writing about superpowers and science, he is a busy researcher at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands where he works in the Process and Energy Departments. 

In addition to being a researcher, Barry is also active in the area of scientific communication and outreach through his company BW Science, which he established in 2014. He has given hundreds of scientific talks in Ireland and the Netherlands at schools, universities, and public events such as Dutch Comic Con, Xmas Comic Con, Science Week Ireland, the Galway International Arts Festival, Delft International Festival of Technology and Studium Generale. He is also the founder and editor-in-chief of the open access journal 'Superhero Science and Technology'. 

In 2016 Barry self-published his first book Secrets of Superhero Science in which he describes the fundamental science and advanced scientific research that could yield superpowers in the future. He has also written a book about the science behind Santa Claus entitled Secret Science of Santa Claus, which was published in October 2016. 

Barry has seen the 2016 film Captain America: Civil War more than 30 times and his superpower will always remain a closely guarded secret.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Friday March 23rd 2018.

Ó Iochtar Mara with Louis de Paor, Doireann Ní Ghriofa, Ceara Conway and Caoimhin Ó Raghaille

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The connection between city and sea has inspired artists for generations. For Ó Íochtar Mara, we borrow our title from a line in Caitlin Maude's love poem Aimhreadh "I speak to you every night from ocean's floor". In a city by the sea, we bring together four very distinctive artists – poets Louis de Paor and Doireann Ní Ghríofa, performance artist and singer Ceara Conway and musician Caoimhin Ó Raghaille. Each interprets the many ways in which we are shaped and influenced by the natural world all around us, in particular by the sea, our constant companion, perched aswe are on the edge of the Irish Sea.

Tá an cónasc idir an chathair agus an mhuir ag spreagadh ealaíontóirí leis na cianta. Don léiriú 'Ó Íochtar Mara' glacaimid ár dteideal ó líne i ndán gráde chuid Chaitlín Maude – Aimhréidh

"I speak to you each night from ocean's floor"

I gcathair cois farraige tugaimid le chéile ceathrar ealaíontóir ar leith – na filí Louis de Paor agus Doireann Ní Ghríofa, an taibhealaíontóir agus an tamhránaí Ceara Conway agus an ceoltóir Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh. Baineann gach aon duine acu cila as na bealaí sin ina mhúnlaítear sinn agus ar an mbealach go dtéann an domhain nádúrtha i gcion orainn, go háirithe toisc an fharraige a bheith mar chompánach buansheasmhach againn, neadaithemar atáimid ar fhiacail Mara Éireann.

Louis de Paor is one of the most celebrated poets of the Irish language. A former editor of the acclaimed Irish language journal Innti (founded by Michael Davitt, Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill, Liam Ó Muirthile and Gabriel Rosenstock), he is now the Director of the Centre for Irish Studies at the National University of Ireland, Galway. De Paor has worked alongside many of the giants of literature in the Irish language such as Sean Ó Tuama with whom he edited a twentieth century anthology of poetry in Irish.

Doireann Ní Ghríofa is a bilingual writer whose poems have appeared in Poetry, The Irish Times, Poetry Ireland Review, The Stinging Fly, The Irish Examiner and elsewhere. Paula Meehan (then Ireland Professor of Poetry) awarded Doireann the Ireland Chair of Poetry Bursary 2014-2015. She has also been awarded The Rooney Prize for Irish Literature, The Michael Hartnett Poetry Prize, and The Wigtown Award for Gaelic Poetry in translation (national poetry prize of Scotland). The Arts Council of Ireland have awarded her three bursaries in literature, and three of her poems have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize (USA). In 2016, she was selected as one of Poetry Ireland Review's 'Rising Generation' of Irish poets. She is active in cross-disciplinary collaborations, active projects include fusions of poetry with film, dance and contemporary art, and always open to engaging with different disciplines.

Ceara Conway is an Irish artist and singer working in performance, song and traditional folk practices. She has a track record in producing innovative experiential performance works that utilise elements such as live singing, appropriated texts, testimonies and visual art to explore social and cultural experiences of power and loss in response to issues such as cultural colonialism, death, exile and migration. She is a recipient of multiple awards and Bursaries from the Arts Council of Ireland, Ealaíon na Gaeltacht, Galway and Limerick City/County Councils. In 2013 she received a Paul Brady scholarship from the Irish World Academy of Music at UL. She has performed with the Dave Flynns Irish Memory Orchestra, the National Gallery of Ireland and several music festivals in Ireland.

Born in Dublin in 1979, Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh has firmly established himself as a major figure in Irish traditional music. His 2003 album 'Kitty Lie Over' with Mick O'Brien earned him worldwide recognition. His 2007 release 'Where the One-Eyed Man is King' led to his being commissioned to write music for film and theatre, including a month-long run at the famous Abbey Theatre in Dublin. He has been the subject of numerous television programmes, including a documentary where he teaches Oscar-winning actor Jeremy Irons to play the fiddle. Caoimhín also has a healthy following outside of traditional music, having performed alongside the likes of Sam Amidon, Amiina, Iarla Ó Lionáird, the Afro Celt Sound System, The Waterboys and Norman Blake (Teenage Fanclub).

This podcast was recorded in dlr LexIcon, The Studio on Thursday March 22nd 2018.

Atinuke: You're Amazing Anna Hibiscus!

Pavilion Theatre


We met African storyteller Atinuke and learned all about Anna Hibiscus, who lives in Nigeria with her large family, including her twin brothers Double and Trouble. This time the two boys are permanently getting themselves into trouble and in Atinuke's You're Amazing, Anna Hibiscus!, the final book of the series, Anna spends her time trying to prove how extraordinary she is.

Atinuke was born in Nigeria to a Nigerian university lecturer father and an English editor mother. For the first years of her life she lived in a dusty provincial town near her grandmother and grandfather, uncles and aunts, and cousins. She moved to the enormous chaotic city of Lagos, where she was often lonely and bored. When she was ten she was sent to boarding school in England. This was something she wanted very much (due to reading far too much Enid Blyton). Luckily it was only three years before her parents moved to England with her sisters and brand new baby brother and she was able to leave boarding school and embark on a new adventure with her siblings at the local comprehensive school. Her father went back to Nigeria after only a year, drawn by a new government post and his own homesickness. She joined him in the school holidays but, home became England. And, after a gap year in Paris, she went to the University of York in the north of England to study English, French and Commonwealth Literatures. For the next few years she fell head over heels into storytelling. She started collecting stories and performing them all over the world, focussing on stories from Africa and the African diaspora. In 2005 an illness stopped her from travelling long enough to write the first Anna Hibiscus stories, quickly followed by The No.1 Car Spotter which she wrote for (and with) her own sons. She lives in a tiny cabin on a rocky, boggy mountainside overlooking the sea. She is still collecting and telling stories writing book after book at a table in her kitchen-living room (or in her car when the noise drives her crazy) and the boys patiently listen to draft after draft.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Thursday March 22nd 2018.

By the Book: Ali Smith with Sinéad Gleeson

Pavilion Theatre


We were delighted to welcome Bailey's Prize-winning, Man Booker-shortlisted author of the best-selling Autumn and How to Be Both, Ali Smith. In her dazzling new novel Winter, the second in her acclaimed Seasonal cycle and the follow-up to her sensational Autumn, Ali casts a merry eye over a post-truth era in a story rooted in history and memory and with a taproot deep in the evergreens, art and love. Join us and one of our favourite authors for what promises to be a warm, witty and upbeat evening of lively and intelligent conversation that will certainly keep away any winter blues.

Ali Smith was born in Inverness in 1962. She is the author of Free Love and Other Stories, Like, Other Stories and Other Stories, Hotel World, The Whole Story and Other Stories, The Accidental, Girl Meets Boy, The First Person and Other Stories, There but for The, Artful, How to Be Both, and Public Library and Other Stories. Hotel World was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and the Orange Prize and The Accidental was shortlisted for the Man Booker and the Orange Prize. How to Be Both won the Baileys Prize, the Goldsmiths Prize and the Costa Novel Award and was shortlisted for the Man Booker and the Folio Prize. Ali Smith lives in Cambridge and her latest novels, Autumn and Winter are the first two of a quartet of novels published in 2016 and 2017.

Sinéad Gleeson is a writer and the presenter of RTE Radio 1's 'The Book Show'.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Wednesday March 21st 2018.

Maggie O'Kane in conversation with Vincent Browne

Pavilion Theatre


Maggie O'Kane is an award–winning Irish journalist whose accolades include British journalist of the Year, Irish Journalist of the Year and Amnesty International Journalist of the Year. She is probably best known for her earlier work as a foreign correspondent with The Guardian covering the Bosnian war — following a career in the newsroom at RTÉ and on Today Tonight. Her career began, appropriately enough for tonight's event, with our host Vincent Browne who gave her that all–important first break and then nearly sacked her. But more of that later.

After founding Guardian Films, The Guardian's Emmy award–winning film unit, she went onto work as The Guardian investigations editor for five years before leaving earlier this year to set up the Global Media Campaign to end Female Genital Mutilation, a role she says will see her to her grave and with 200 million women and girls living with FGM, that is probably true.

Maggie O'Kane is a journalist and documentary film maker. She is executive director of the Global Media Campaign to End Female Genital Mutilation, set up by The Guardian in 2014. It has since expanded to become an independent charity – working with number of international media partners. The Global Media Campaign is an international media network that supports activists and journalists to accelerate the end of Female Genital Mutilation by using both local radio,TV and all available social media platforms to help a new generation of media activists to end FGM within a generation.

Vincent Browne, originally from Broadford, Co Limerick, began his journalistic career by reporting from Prague from August to November 1968 on the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia for The Irish Times. He edited Nusight magazine in 1969 and 1970 and in September 1970 he went to Belfast as the Northern Ireland news editor of the Irish Press group. He worked for the Sunday Independent from 1974 and in 1977 he founded Magill magazine and was editor of that until 1983. He was editor of The Sunday Tribune from 1983 to 1994. He then became a columnist for The Irish Times. He presented a radio programme "Tonight with Vincent Browne" for RTÉ from 1996 to 2007 and between 2007 and 2017 he presented "Tonight with Vincent Browne for TV3.

This podcast was recorded in the Pavilion Theatre on Sunday March 11th 2018.

Northern Broads

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It has been 20 years since the signing of the Good Friday Agreement so we are taking the opportunity to celebrate Northern Ireland's women writers. Inspired by New Island's 2017 publication of Female Lines: New Writing by Women from Northern Ireland, we have invited writers Susan McKay (chair), Medbh McGuckian and Margaret Ward with poet Elaine Gaston and singer songwriter Hannah Peel to delight and enthral audiences at Mountains to Sea International Women's Day 2018. We will consider how much has changed or stayed the same for women in Northern Irish society in recent times.

In 1985, The Female Line: Northern Irish Women Writers was published. A pioneering anthology at the time, it gave many Northern Irish women writers their firrst opportunity for publication. Now, over thirty years later, Female Lines: New Writing by Women from Northern Ireland — a stunning mosaic of work by some of the best contemporary women writers from Northern Ireland — acts as both a new staging post and a sequel to its vibrant feminist predecessor.

Susan McKay is an award winning writer, journalist, broadcaster and documentary maker. From Derry, she worked as Northern Editor of the Sunday Tribune and more recently for The Irish Times. She is Author of 6 books: Sophia's Story, Northern Protestants – An Unsettled People, Without Fear, Silent People and Other Stories, Bear in Mind These Dead, and From Belfast to Basra. Her work has been widely anthologized including in Irish Times Book of the Year, Penguin Book of Great Irish Reportage, British Council "Lives Entwined" series and Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing.

Medbh McGuckian was born in 1950 into a Catholic family in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She went on to attend Queen's University, Belfast in 1968 where she met and took classes from Seamus Heaney, and received her B.A. in 1972. McGuckian continued her education and did post-graduate work in the English department of Queen's University until 1974 when she received an M.A. During that time, she began to write for local papers and magazines. One of her poems was first published in 1975. After graduation, she went back to her secondary-school to teach English. She also taught at St. Patrick's Boys' College in East Belfast.

Dr Margaret Ward is a feminist historian whose highly acclaimed book Unmanageable Revolutionaries: Women and Irish Nationalism, first published in 1983, has become a classic text. She has also written biographies of Maud Gonne and Hanna Sheehy Skeffington and edited works on the role of women in nationalist and suffrage movements in Ireland. She is currently Visiting Fellow in History at Queen's University of Belfast.

Elaine Gaston is from the north coast of Ireland. She has won prizes in the Patrick Kavanagh Award, The National Poetry Competition, The Vincent Buckley Poetry Prize and received an ACES Award from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. Her first collection The Lie of the Land was published in 2015 (Doire Press). Recent work has appeared in The Yellow Nib and Poetry Ireland Review.

Hannah Peel is a Northern Irish singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, composer and arranger now based in London, England. Peel has released records as a solo artist, as a member of The Magnetic North and with many other collaborators including the electronic group John Foxx and the Maths and Beyond the Wizards Sleeve. She performed in July 2017 as part of the Hull Capital of culture and at the Southbank Centre in London. A live album was recorded during this time.

This podcast was recorded in dlr LexIcon, The Studio on Sunday March 11th 2018.

Lean Out

dlr LexIcon, The Studio


When the banks collapsed and Ireland was catapulted almost overnight into an economic meltdown, the commentary and analysis of what had just happened was provided almost exclusively by men. However, the austerity that followed, the bail out of banks and the dismantling of many public services impacted disproportionately on women.

In this discussion we will ask if women were more present in economic debate, analysis, discussion and policy formulation, would the questions that we ask be different and informed by women's lived experience? Would we agree with panelist Dawn Foster whose book Lean Out counters arguments made by Sheryl Sandberg in Lean In, in particular the view that 'trickle down' feminism benefits everyone? Also joining us will be Frances Weetman, winner of the inaugural Virago New Statesman prize for Economics and Politics, asking Whose Model Is It Anyway?, challenging our persistent trust of awed economic models.

Join Kathy Sheridan of The Irish Times as chair of this discussion for a stimulating and challenging opener to our International Women's Day Programme at Mountains to Sea dlr Book Festival.

Dawn Foster is a London-based journalist, writing predominantly on social affairs, politics, economics and women's rights. She is a regular contributor to the Guardian, London Review of Books, Times Literary Supplement, New Humanist and Open Democracy. She regularly appears as a political commentator on BBC's Newsnight and Sky News. Foster's first book, Lean Out, was published in January 2016 by Repeater Books. Her second book, Where Will We Live? a commentary on the UK housing crisis, will be published by Repeater in 2018. She is currently completing another book, a cultural history of the dole. Foster was awarded the International Building Press Prize for Young Journalist of the Year in 2014, and was named Non-traditional Journalist of the Year at the inaugural Words by Women Awards, longlisted for the Orwell Prize for Exposing Britain's Social Evils in 2017 and shortlisted for the Bread and Roses Award 2017.

Frances Weetman is a 2013 Durham University graduate in Economics and Politics. At Durham she developed her writing, started at the Royal Court Theatre as a regular contributor to its Young Writers' Project and as editor of political articles for the university's newspapers. Frances has had paid internships with HSBC and the investment bank Nomura, but instead of taking up a graduate banking job offer she has decided to concentrate on film-making and writing. Having made educational films for Durham University, she is setting up an independent documentary film-making project with the aim of increasing political engagement and young voter turn-out. She is a Fabian Women mentee.

Kathy Sheridan is an Irish Times Staff journalist.

This podcast was recorded in dlr LexIcon, The Studio on Sunday March 11th 2018