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Fourth Forge at Gort Festival forges ahead: March 25th and 26th
arts and media |
Tuesday March 08, 2011 03:38 by Fred Johnston - Western Writers' Centre - Ionad Scríbhneoiri Chaitlin Maude - Galway westernwriters at eircom dot net Hynes Building, St. Clare's Walk, Merchants Road, Galway 092.564822
Art wins out every time . . .
In spite of The Arts Council's refusal to fund it, the Fourth Forge at Gort Literature Festival will take place on Friday and Saturday, March 25th and 26th, at Gort, Co. Galway, organised by The Western Writers' Centre, Ionad Scribhneoiri Chaitlín Maude, Galway.
Cenbtre Chairperson Aoife Nic Fhearghusa with Tom Byrne's painting of Lady Augusta Gregory
The festival will feature a fine and eclectic line-up of writers and music - and the Centre's Director, Fred Johnston, has a special word of thanks for the festival's sponsors.
"Individual writers have given freely of their time and even of their finances in a bleak period for all of us to make sure this festival would continue," he said. I will be acknowledging them individually on the opening night. Others have given in kind. We can't express our gratitude to them sufficiently."
The festival acknowldges the poet W.B. Yeats in referencing the old Gort forge, which can still be seen in the town's main street, and from where Yeats worked to restore Thoor Ballylee. His brother Jack painted a famous work from an upstairs room in Sulliovan's Royal Hotel.
Among the participants in this year's festival are The Poetry Chicks, journalist Olaf Tyaransen, poets Noel Monahan, Matt Mooney, Patrick Stack, The Clare Three-legged Stool Writers' Group, poet and musician Clare Sawtell, poet and political activist Sarah Clancy, novelist and critic Kevin Kiely, John W. Sexton, Miceal Kearney and Paul Jeffcott. In keeping with previous festivals, there will be wire-strung harp music from this time New Orleans-born Brenda Malloy.
"A special feature of this year's festival will be a showing by renowned photographer Joe Geoghan of elements of his exhibition of photographs of the eyes of various Irish writers. It's quite an astounding exhibition. And then we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the publication of the first book, 'Ave,' in George Moore's famous trilogy, 'Ave, Atque, Vale,' with a specially compiled piece by playwrights John Arden and Margaretta D'Arcy, 'Tea with George Moore,' where 'Moore' will discuss his world and his writing and his connection to Coole Park, all over a cup of tea. I must commend John and Margaretta for the work and enthusiasm they've put in to this."
Yeats and his times are never far from the consciousness of The Forge at Gort. The Dublin-based writer and poet, Rosemarie Rowley donated a painting by Apollo Gallery, Dublin, artist Tom Byrne, of Lady Augusta Gregory to the festival. It is up for sale and anyone interested in having a look at it should come to the opening night or, alternatively, contact the Western Writers' Centre at 091.564822 ext 312, or firstname.lastname@example.org
"This was another demonstration of the enormous generosity of individual poets and writers," says Fred Johnston. Perhaps it's high time we had a government run only by writers and artists!"
All events at the festival are admission free. Donations always welcome.
"We would still welcome sponsorship," says Fred Johnston. "We are hoping that businesses will step forward on this. The festival puts Gort on the literary map and it has not been given its rightful place there. It was the major town facilitating writers and artists during the early days of the Celtic Renaissance at Coole. Let's work together to make its cultural importance plain. All sponsors and county bodies will be given full acknowledgement on our press information and postering. "
FRIDAY MARCH 25TH
Exhibition of photographs by Joe Geogheghan at Gort Library
5pm – 6pm - Opening and exhibition of Tom Byrne painting of Lady Augusta Gregory – this painting is for sale in support of the festival and bids will be taken or announced at the opening - Sullivans Royal Hotel
John W. Sexton – poet Sarah Clancy – 7.pm Sullivans Royal Hotel Friday
The Poetry Chicks+ Miceál Kearney : Gort Library, 8pm
SATURDAY MARCH 26TH
Noel Monahan – poet; Kevin Kiely – poet and reviewer - Gort Library, 11 am, Saturday
Matt Mooney – with Paul Jeffcut – poetry & music, Patrick Stack: – Saturday 1pm - Gort Family Resource Centre
The Clare Three-Leggéd Stool Writers' Group – O'Grady's Bar, Gort 3pm
'Tea with George Moore' – an ensemble piece on the writers' life written by John Arden and Margaretta D'Arcy; music by Brenda Malloy – Gort Family Resource Centre, 5pm.
Olaf Tyaransen/Clare Sawtell – launch of Clare' Sawtell collection (7pm) : Sullivan's Hotel 8pm Sat. 26th
Links: 091564822 Ext 312. email@example.com
We have had individual sponsorship from writers, Poetry Ireland and Minihan's Supervalu, Gort and are awaiting a decision from Galway County Council.
Further details (Press) 087.2178138
The Poetry Chicks