Fáilte! Welcome to the 21st Cashel Arts Festival!

Claire Fox - Chairperson

We are delighted to be back for another jam-packed festival. The theme for 2023 is journeys and this weekend promises a lot of them, through time and space and story. But first, every journey starts with a single step, or in our case, a single meeting. I’d like to thank the committee who volunteer year round to put on this festival, as well as our sponsors who make it possible.

Our music lineup is diverse this year, with Pa Sheehy headlining Saturday night in Brú Ború. But we also have a tribute to Leonard Cohen, Harp and Fiddle from Jane and Jill and, for the first time in a long time, we will close the festival with a night at the opera.

The excellent Bolton Lecture series continues with world-renowned historian William Dalrymple who will speak on the legacy of the British Empire in India. As always, we have another excellent theatre piece, Cahal Flynn’s ‘Pure Medicine’, a journey back into his memories of the old men his mother nursed and the stories they told.

On a different kind of journey, we have Fidget Feet here for the first time with their show called House!, a delightful mix of aerial dance, bingo and performance. As well as the excellent performers from Fidget Feet, you will see many local faces popping up.

For the last number of years, we have been grateful to have Catherine Marshall curate our visual arts programme. Once again, she has brought several fantastic artists. This year, we welcome two more artists. Manar Al Shouha’s work is formed in reaction to the civil war in her native Syria, while Pat Curran is influenced by inner city Dublin. On very different journeys, it is wonderful to see such diverse artists make a stop at Cashel. We also have two excellent local artists displaying their work. Petronelle Clifton Brown has journeyed worldwide and that informs her exhibition ‘Going to the Islands’. Then we have Mark Fitzell’s journey through the ages, with 100 portraits of Cashel people.

We have also commissioned Subashini Goda to create a new piece of work combining Indian and Irish dance, showing a journey between cultures (see what I did there). With Michelle Lawrence and her dancers, as well as our local Indian dance group, the piece will cross continents in a story about the Seven Sisters.

Meanwhile, every street in Cashel hides a thousand stories. This year, we were determined to record some of them. As you walk through the town this year, keep an eye out for posters with quotes and QR codes to access a whole treasure trove of stories from and about Cashel from local writers and community groups.

As always, there’s more, between Latin Fusion dance, film, craft displays, a class on the power of aroma, street theatre, a fire show, drumming and more. Come, take a journey with us into the arts, I guarantee there’s something for everyone.

Claire Fox, Chairperson Cashel Arts Festival

Buíochas le/Thank you and Acknowledgements

Melanie Scott (Tipperary Arts Officer), Fiona Flavin (Assistant Arts Officer), AnnMarie Keaveney and all at Tipperary Arts Office, Tipperary County Council, Anthony Coleman, Eddie Fogarty, Cllr Ger Darcy (Cathaoirleach Tipperary Co. Co), Cllr Séamus Hannifin (Leas Cathaoirleach Tipperary Co. Co.), Tipperary/Cahir/Cashel Municipal Authority, Cllr. Declan Burgess (Cathaoirleach of the Tipperary/Cahir/Cashel Municipal District), Cllr. Roger Kennedy, Cllr. Michael Fitzgerald, Cllr. John Crosse, Karl Wallace, Regina O’Shea, Adrian Colwell and all at The Arts Council, Olivia Quinlan and the staff of Cashel Heritage Centre, Cashel Heritage and Development Trust, Tipperary Library Service, Maura Barrett and staff of Cashel Library, John O’Donoghue and Cashel Handball Club, Paddy Downey and the committee of Halla na Féile, Dean James Mulhall and Select Vestry of St. John the Baptist Cathedral, Elaine Moriarty, OPW and staff at The Rock of Cashel, Ronan O’Brien and staff of Brú Ború, Martin Lynch and Cashel Chamber of Commerce, Dermot O’Halloran, Will Ryan, Cashel Boys’ N.S., Mary Andrews, Cashel Girls’ N.S., Elma Cooke, Deanery School, Aishling O’Dwyer, Scoil Chormaic, Aoife Tierney, Knockavilla N.S., Cate O’Connor, Cashel Youth Centre, Nuala Martin, Tipperary Rural Traveller Project (TRTP), Geraldine O’Donnell, Moorehaven Day Care Centre, Suzanne Brosnan, The Active Retirement Group, Orla Hickey, Cashel Day Care Centre, Deirdre O’Dwyer, STDC, The Ukrainain Groups, Dundrum, Michael & Karen Ryan, Dundrum Athletics, Annette O’Donnell, Cécile Mulcahy, DBB (Dualla, Ballytarsna, Boherlahan) Athletics (Juniors), Patricia Fitzgerald, Darren Ryan, Larkspur Park, Tipperary 8th Scout Group, Brownies, Girl Guides, all artists, festival team, volunteers, sponsors and community members who were part of the Cashel Arts Festival 2023.