Contemporary writers – here and abroad - are reflecting on the realities of political change taking place in the United States,
Britain and further afield, and what they see as the root causes and the perplexing nature of these changes. As stories of race
and prejudice blare and glare at us from international headlines, we ask if we can shape the future and how it will look. In our
2018 PRESENT TENSE strand, we hope that you will be challenged and provoked and in turn challenge, provoke and engage with writers
and thinkers in a forum where views from all perspectives can be heard. Fergal Keane and David McCullagh join us to consider the
lives of people who were contemporaries and adversaries, with Fergal Keane going home to Kerry and Cork to discover the personal
stories behind the war of independence and civil war while David paints a picture of one of the leading figures of both wars,
Eamon de Valera.
This year, we make an imaginative leap of our own as we bring together words and music, presenting our new Lyric Note programme.
In association with the TS Eliot Foundation and to mark Nick Roth's recent tenure as composer in residence at
Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, we present The Wasteland, directed by Adrian Dunbar and featuring Stranley Townsend, Orla Charlton, Frank McCusker and Anna Nygh.
We thread the Lyric Note into this year's festival, connecting writers with musicians over the run of the festival.