Youth Arts programme spans different forms across County Tipperary

The County Council’s Arts Service is continuing to develop its Youth Arts programme throughout South Tipperary in November and December with events for young people spanning different art forms. The Arts Service works in collaboration with cultural providers, schools and the community to provide a wide range of activities aimed for young people between the ages of 13 to 20 years. This year the Connex Programme is involved in a number of short residencies that form part of an INTERREG programme. The County Council are one of the partners on this European Partnership project, entitled Green and Blue Futures. The aim of the programme will be to promote the local environment and cultural assets specifically along the river Suir. It is the intention that the project will develop an interest, knowledge and ownership of the River Suir and its built environment to new and existing audiences.

Three projects will form part of this programme during Connex12, including Forever Now, a new film-making residency in Carrick-on-Suir. A new short film will be devised and directed by Shane Dempsey and edited by Zoe Chen. Using extensive on-location rehearsals and character development Shane will lead young actors on an exciting journey into the world of film-making. Forever Now will be made over a week and will be screened in Carrick-on-Suir in December. Shane Dempsey is an Irish director who runs Fragments, a production company based in London and he has worked in New York, Moscow, Belgium, London and Ireland.

The second project is a new video and photography residency in Fethard. Local artist Pat Looby will develop a project focusing on the keeping and harvesting of Osiary or Willow beds along the river Clashawley, a tributary of the river Suir. In the past families would maintain Oisary or Willow beds, which would be used for making baskets, and the willow was harvested to make thatch for local homes. Today these skills and traditions, although part of our heritage, are lost to many of the younger inhabitants of the area. By using modern technology and contemporary art interpretations and methodologies, Pat hopes to rekindle a fascination and knowledge about our past, allowing a younger generation of the locality to get to know their own place and landscape. The project will develop through video, photography and stories. Students will record their findings through both film and photography and these will be presented at the conclusion of the project.

The third project is a new Poetry Residency in Cahir with local poet Grace Wells. Grace will be working with school children from Cahir national schools and holding poetry workshops in schools using the theme of the river, its influences and relationship with Cahir Castle. The workshops will culminate in a poetry event held at Cahir Castle for the participants. Grace’s books for children include Gyrfalcon (Dublin, O’Brien Press, 2002), which won won the Eilis Dillon Best Newcomer Bisto Award and was also an International White Ravens’ Choice; and Ice Dreams (O’Brien Press, 2008).

As well as the Residency Programme Connex12 will be once again be working in partnership with local Arts providers. Starting off the programme the County Council’s Arts Service worked in partnership with Clonmel Junction Festival, who hosted the workshop Clonmel Stories last Friday at The Common Thread Café in Clonmel.

The Arts Service will also be working with the Cashel Arts Festival. The programme will include a creative writing workshop for teenagers with poet and teacher Dave Lordan at Cashel Library and a Hip Hop dance workshop with Chris Dylus, dancer/choreographer of Dance Theatre of Ireland. Cashel Arts Festival will also present the video installation All Places Are Distant From Heaven Alike by artist Bridget O’Gorman. This artwork was one of the exhibits which formed part of the County Council Arts Service’s curatorial project Dig Where You Stand. Bridget and co-curator Rosie Lynch will give a talk in relation to the project at The Bolton Library during the festival (see for the full programme).

Also as part of Connex 12, the Arts Service will be working in partnership with Tipperary Excel to present a workshop with Royseven for young people aged 13-18. The workshop will be a one-hour interactive discussion about the band’s journey from beginning to the present day. It will refer to topics such as writing songs, securing a record deal, touring, making videos, the reality versus myth of being in a band and a few funny anecdotes along the way. Interspersed with songs performed acoustically by the band, at the end of the session, all those who bring instruments with them will be invited to join the band and perform an ensemble version of their track Killer. Students are invited to bring all and any instruments they play, and it would be beneficial to familiarise yourselves with the song in advance of the workshop. Booking is essential to reserve your free place on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get up close and personal with Royseven at Tipperary Excel, tel 062-80520.

All events are free unless otherwise specified. For further information about any of these events or to obtain a full programme contact Sally O’Leary at 052-6134565, e-mail Brochures will shortly be available at the County Museum, Art Centres and Libraries or visit