CULTURE Night 2012 in Laois was a great success, drawing huge crowds to the many free events that were held throughtout the county on September 21.
Parents and children came along to the Arthouse in Stradbally to join in the fun of making art with the artists, Karen Hendy, Gemma Guihan, Lorraine Walsh, Coilin Rush and Vera McEvoy. From ink painting to shadow puppetry to making your mark on a giant sheet of paper, there was something for everyone.
The Rathineska Comhaltas Group gave a performance highlighting some wonderful musical skills from the entire group. Laois Open Door Theatre presented a selection of drama and comedy that examined the shifting nature of the Irish character. Followed by a concert with original music showcased by a very talented line up of musicans and singers from the Laois Songwriters Circle including Mick McCawley, James O’Connor and duo Eva Queen and Brian Flanagan.
Events around the county included an exhibition of rings made by the public and displayed at Helena Malones’ Studio in Portlaoise and there was a music and art trail in Mountrath. Singing group Vocalese appeared in the Library Portlaoise and enthralled the audience with a variety of songs from their wonderful repertoire. Portarlington Library hosted a very successful workshop with writer Jean O’Brien and there was a talk on the works of Samuel Beckett by Arthur Broomfield in Mountmellick Library. A large group of enthusiastic adults and children enjoyed an interactive workshop with local Rathdowney artists Sandra Kelly and Alison Cahill in the Marian Centre, Rathdowney.
The Dunamaise Arts Centre was a hive of activity with lots of sound from the well attended Stampede Drumming workshop with Eddie O’Neill and an open mic event for young music makers introduced by Stewart Quinn. The finale event at the Arts Centre was hosted by Portlaoise Comhaltas group. Laois Writers Group presented a Literary and Music event at the Mile Bush, Portlaoise attended by a large audience who enjoyed readings and music from local and visiting writers and musicians. The arts office already have plans underway for next year’s events.