Minister Catherine Martin T.D. has announced details of Culture Ireland’s online festival for mid-March which is designed to celebrate Irish arts worldwide at a time when Irish artists normally travel the globe, presenting and sharing our culture on international stages.
The festival, entitled SEODA, meaning jewels, includes many of Ireland’s finest artists and companies and covers all art forms from architecture to visual arts. This 5 day festival running from 17-21 March is an ambitious programme to ensure Irish artists reach audiences worldwide, including the diaspora and new audiences where Irish artists may not have travelled previously. The festival is also available free online in Ireland.
Minister Martin said “Our artists are Ireland’s treasures and despite the many challenges this year, our artists continue to create and perform in innovative ways. Through sharing a selection of amazing performances in line with the aims of Global Ireland, we can reach audiences around the world and maintain our cultural connections and offer hope and joy at this time when Irish culture holds a central place on the world stage.”
Over the past year Culture Ireland has delivered on its remit to promote Irish artists worldwide through online presentation of artists. There is a heightened desire this year through SEODA to reach a global audience to the greatest extent possible, as in 2020 many artists had just reached international destinations but did not get to deliver performances over St Patricks Day period. In 2019 Culture Ireland supported 60 Irish acts to tour in the month of March and they reached 350,000 audience members in various venues around the world.
Included in SEODA is a strong theatre offer with highlights of the Abbey Theatre’s Dear Ireland 2020 Reflections on a Pandemic, Druid Theatre’s production of The Cherry Orchard adapted by Tom Murphy and Solar Bones, based on the award winning novel by Mike McCormack, produced by Rough Magic Theatre Company.
For children the festival includes the internationally acclaimed The Wolf and Peter by CoisCeim Dance Theatre, The Girl Who Forgot to Sing Badly by Theatre Lovett and Prime Cut’s production of Removed.
On the film front, as well a select series of film shorts, there is a focus on Cartoon Saloon’s Golden Globe nominated Wolfwalkers. An exhibition of the film in the Butler Gallery Kilkenny, will be accompanied by a performance by Kila, who has been nominated for the Hollywood Music in Media awards as part of the composer team for the film.
The focus on music is wide ranging from traditional music with Martin Hayes, Ireland’s Cultural Ambassador to a diverse programme from the Irish Chamber Orchestra and a special Italian flavour with The Trials of Tenducci by the Irish Baroque Orchestra.
Highlights of the literature events include a tribute to Derek Mahon, led by Stephen Rea produced by TradFest, a special evening from the National Concert Hall curated by Sinead Gleeson and aCúirt Festival event presented from Ashford Castle.
The global aspect will be enhanced with events from three of the key Irish Cultural Centres abroad, Irish Arts Center, NY, The London Irish Centre, Camden and Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris.
All events are available free to audiences around the world through Culture Ireland’s YouTube channel. All performing artists are being paid for the online presentation of their work and many of the artists and companies are supported by the Arts Council. Full details of the programme are listed on the Culture Ireland website here.