Arts festival is a natural step for Clonakilty

Posted on: 5th May, 2015

Category: Arts & Entertainment

Contributor: West Cork People

What have Skibbereen, Bandon, Bantry and Kinsale got in common? Besides being significant sized towns in West Cork, they also feature an annual arts or literature festival. So what’s wrong with this picture? Well, there’s no mention of Clonakilty – until now. A group of individuals from the local drama group ‘Tadhg an Astna Players’ (Neil Fitzpatrick, Trish Walsh, Greg Mulcahy Cathy Fitzgerald and Kieran Doyle) and the Clonakilty Arts centre, (Clodagh Connaughton and Manny Lange) have formed a committee that has put together an exciting, eclectic and excellent range of performances that will enliven Clonakilty from June 18 to 21 in the form of the Clonakilty Organic Arts Festival.

What makes this unique is the fact that the festival is built around the rich talents from the town and its local environs, hence the word ‘Organic’ in the title. “We thought about how much talent is within the town and so many people in the region are unaware of this. So we decided that our mission statement from the beginning was to provide a creative space and stage for local talent,” said Kieran Doyle, one of the organisers. “It was easy to get people to agree to do it because Clonakilty has so much talent and people are proud of what they can do.”

The festival will open on Thursday night in De Barras pub with a taste of poetry, drama and singing, featuring acts such as the singing talents from Clonakilty Lodge and opened by Clonakilty man and renowned poet, Dave Lordan.

There is something for everyone over the three and a half day event. Children’s events on the Model Railway Village train, to poetry, drama, music, choirs, film, dancing in Emmet square, street performances, history talks, comedy, workshops etc. Clonakilty Community Arts Centre has also created an arts trail to showcase an array of talent and has got the consensus from many of the local businesses to ‘display some of the local art’ in their premises for the duration of the festival.

“The local venues have been great in giving us space for the performers and we have tried to spread the performances around the town as best we can, including a dramatic pageant out in Inchydoney amphitheatre,” says Greg Mulcahy. “Everyone we have dealt with has been so supportive and all we need is people to come along, enjoy the events and the town.”

Most of the events are free and the programme will range from morning to late over Friday, Saturday and Sunday, as well as the opening on Thursday evening. Although Cork County Council are part funding the event, Neil Fitzpatrick and Trish Walsh, the financial officers explain that “the festival is being run on a shoe string and any money we have received is for promotional purposes. The performers have all waivered any expenses, which has made it easier for us.  But we would be delighted with any sponsorship or donations.” (These can be submitted to the local credit union, Clonakilty Organic Arts Festival account.) Check out Clonakity Organic Arts Festival 2015 facebook page or email

Put it in your diary, iPhone, facebook page….Clonakilty’s first arts festival…June 18 – 21.

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13th April, 2018  ·  

An evening on the 'Balance of Feeling Good' by Clonakilty Gaa Club Health and Wellbeing Committee followed by Guest Speaker, Cork GAA Chairperson, Tracey Kennedy.

Paddy Duggan, former Principal of Clonakilty Community College, will be MC on the night, facilitating a discussion on getting the balance of feeling good.
Contributors on the night are Colm Sheehy, Conor Murray, David Lowney, Denis Murphy, Eoghan Deasy, Sean McEvoy, Thomas Clancy and Treasa O'Brien.
Topics covered will range from awareness and responsibility to yourself and others to the benefits of exercise and nutrition.
The evening is suitable for everyone aged 16 and over from players, members of the community, parents of young and adolescent children, etc.

This is a public event, free of charge and everyone is invited and very welcome to attend.
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12th April, 2018  ·  

The Cast of Harold Pinter’s ‘No Man’s Land’ are on their way to the All-Ireland finals, having won 26 awards, including five best of Festivals, at the Amateur Drama League of Ireland annual three act festivals. The play ‘No Man’s Land, by Harold Pinter, the Nobel Prize Winning Author is directed by Jennifer Williams.

One last opportunity to view this multi award winning play at Skibbereen Town Hall, on Saturday 14th of April, before the finals.

Having met by chance in a pub, two aging writers continue a long night of drinking and reminiscing in a stately London home. As the night wears on, their conversation wanders through memories long forgotten or invented. Is their encounter real or a delusion? Are they strangers or do they share a past history? When unexpected guests intrude upon an increasingly surreal evening, the atmosphere quickly changes from friendly to threatening, and the encounter becomes a game of survival.

Tickets may be purchased at the door or in advance by emailing

For more information please contact
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9th April, 2018  ·  

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