Focus On ... Your Funny Bone

May 27, 2015

Thanks to Mark Stanley from Punch Lion for giving us this superb insight into our recent 'Focus On ... Your Funny Bone' comedy workshops in May with 5th & 6th Class pupils.

 

Draíocht invited 5th and 6th class students to comedy workshops hosted by Punch Lion which would incorporate two art exhibitions currently on show.   ‘Focus on ….Your Funny Bone’ integrated the ‘look and respond’ of the primary curriculum. Overall, the aim of the workshops was to awaken creativity, facilitate thoughts and opinions and introduce humour.

The two exhibitions with different styles, themes and colours challenged the students to express themselves and feel comfortable. The ground floor exhibition by Sally-Anne Kelly comprises of clay masks and photographs of the clay masks in pools of water. On the first floor, Helen MacMahons exhibition is an engaging mix of science and art. This was the start of the workshop for the students - it was a time to free their minds and develop an opinion.

Peter O’Byrne and Danny Kehoe were the two facilitators for these workshops. Trained actors and comedians. They have tricks up their sleeves for the students - “If you want to be funny. Don’t try to be funny”, Danny advised. Art and comedy have the same aim - be creative, express yourself and be true. The students were firstly asked about their opinion of the exhibitions and their feelings about them. Opinions were supported by the facilitators and reminders were given to the value of each opinion. The initial exercises aimed at making the students comfortable and free their minds. Comedy is a valued genre in performance arts. The students eagerly discussed their favourite stand-up comedians and comedy films, recited their best joke and giggled at the ‘bad’ jokes from Danny and Peter.

A short time was allocated for these workshops and Peter and Danny quickly directed the students to challenge their comedy performance skills and the students enthusiastically played their parts. Teamwork, respect, individuality and silliness were all encouraged. Creativity is important for children’s development. Comedy and art are equally important disciplines allowing you to create and stimulate your mind. They are also subjective and we hope we conveyed that message to the students.

Charlie Chaplin had his own opinion - “I do not have much patience with a thing of beauty that must be explained to be understood. If it does need additional interpretation by someone other than the creator, then I question whether it has fulfilled its purpose.”

 

Mark Stanley, Punch Lion



Follow Punch Lion on Twitter @Punch_Lion, Facebook Punch Lion and http://www.punchlion.ie

Now Booking ... Punch Lion Kids Comedy Club ... Sat 4th July 2015 2pm & 4pm ...
A family friendly stand-up comedy show for little kids and big kids!
READ MORE HERE ... BOOK NOW ... 

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By Draíocht. Tags: Reviews & Interviews, Theatre, Youth Arts,

600 Children Enjoy Lifeboat by Catherine Wheels Theatre Company

March 31, 2015

Leigh Hussey had a wonderful time last week out in schools with Catherine Wheels Theatre Company’s ‘Lifeboat’ which toured Fingal schools as part of Draíocht’s Spréacha Festival, Fingal’s International Arts Programme for Children. We were thrilled to play to almost 600 children in 3 days.



Lifeboat is the extraordinary true story of Bess Walder and Beth Cummings. Set in World War II, it is a story of courage, a story of survival and a story of enduring friendship. On Friday 13 September 1940, a ship, The City of Benares, set sail from Liverpool for Canada. On board were 90 evacuees escaping the relentless bombing and dangers of war torn Britain. Four days into the crossing, the ship was torpedoed and sank. Only eleven of the evacuees survived. Two fifteen year old girls, Bess Walder and Beth Cummings, spent 19 terrifying hours in the water on an upturned lifeboat. They willed each other to survive. Lifeboat tells their story.





On Tuesday we were in St Francis Xavier’s Senior School, Wednesday we travelled to Malahide to St Oliver Plunkett’s and Thursday we finished off in Scoil Oilibheir. A big congratulations to the cast; Lois Makie who played Bess and Amy McGregor who played Beth and Stage manager Sian Mac Gregor who marked the end of a three month tour of ‘Lifeboat’ with us. Thank you to all at Catherine Wheels Theatre Company for all your hard work and bringing Bess and Beth’s incredible story to life.


It was great to spend time with all the classes to hear their thoughts on the show. If you saw the show and would like to share your thoughts please follow the link below to leave a comment.

http://www.catherinewheels.co.uk/productions/lifeboat/feedback/#page-content



 

Read more about Spréacha here ... 
Spréacha is presented by Draíocht in partnership with Fingal County Council.

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By Draíocht. Tags: Reviews & Interviews, Youth Arts,

Dancing up a Storm with Create Dance at Draiocht

March 20, 2015

We've had an amazing year and a half with dancers Mark Rogers and Philippa Donnellan, who have been working with 2 groups of children with intellectual disabilities.
Our Junior dancers are aged 5-8 years and our Seniors are 9-12 years old.
Along with their parents and siblings, they've been dancing up a storm in Draiocht's innovative dance project, Create Dance, which started in December 2013

We've tried and succeeded in engaging all five senses, using a variety of methods. We've had some fun by using bubble wrap that pops, silk material that slides and music that bangs. Participants have watched, listened and felt, while dancing, laughing and creating.

The initial project ran from December 2013 to February 2014, made possible with the generous support of The Ireland Funds. The Project then continued through to now, when we had our final Dress Up Dance Class on Saturday 7th March 2015. We hope to continue our Create Dance Project next September.

If you would like to make a Donation to help us programme more Create Dance Workshops (which are free to the children & their families), please get in touch with marketing@draiocht.ie.

Enjoy some images below of our lovely dancers, along with Mark, Philippa and Leigh.

PROJECT UPDATE ... WATCH OUR VIDEO HERE ... 



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By Draíocht. Tags: Create Dance, Youth Arts, Mark Rogers,

D15 Youth Theatre Auditions 2014 - 21 September 2014

July 25, 2014



Download the PDF Application Form
Download the Word Doc Application Form


Now in its 4th year, it’s a very exiting time of year for the D15 Youth Theatre, as its Audition time again! If you are interested here's an application form; fill it in and drop it back to Draíocht. Places are limited, open to 14-18 year olds and admittance is by audition only.

The Audition will take place on Sunday, 21 September 2014 @ Draíocht 11am-2pm.

Please arrive at 10:45am to sign in. You do not need to prepare anything or bring anything with you.

We will begin with a chat about the auditions and what will be involved in participating in D15 Youth Theatre.  You will then take part in a group workshop.  This workshop will involve some group activities and some script work.  Don’t be nervous – being able to work as part of a group, take guidance and pick up new things is every bit as important as previous experience.

The Audition is NOT based on talent alone; participants are selected with regard to the following aim: 

We aim to establish a good gender mix, from a range of abilities and backgrounds and so, will select participants based on the following criteria: 

• Gender balance 

• Social/geographical mix 

• Inclusion of ages 14 years-18 years

• Interest and passion for theatre

We will let each participant know by letter if they have been selected by Thursday 25th September 2014.  Should you be offered a place, the first term will run weekly from Tuesday 7th October to Tuesday 9th of Dec 2014. There is a €10 membership fee for the term and a €2.00 weekly contribution.

For further information join D15 Youth Theatre on facebook or contact Sarah on 01 8090829 or sarah@draiocht.ie.

We look forward to seeing you at auditions and wish you luck on the day!

Download the PDF Application Form
Download the Word Doc Application Form

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By Draíocht. Tags: D15 Youth Theatre, Youth Arts,

Des Kenny talks to Orla Kelly Artist in Residence at Draiocht

July 1, 2014

Orla Kelly has completed six months of a yearlong residency in Draíocht’s Artist’s Studio. While making her own distinctive art, Orla is also involved in educating young children through the visual arts and is the founder of ‘Early Childhood Creativity’. She has participated with Draíocht in organising creative crèches for young infants and initiating projects based on its current visual art exhibitions with local primary schools. On entering the studio this process of her practice shapes corners with colours of vibrant youthful activity, cone shaped objects become rockets, pom-poms transform into flower heads and a tea pot acquires a humorous face. Orla believes the introduction of artistic creativity to very young children, helps develop creative thinking, social skills and a sense of self esteem. Art is not just a procedure to entertain children but is an important educational tool. With assistance from Fingal County Council Arts Office, Orla will become Artist in Residence in a local primary school from September 2014. Setting up a studio near the classrooms, she will share her artistic knowledge with the teachers and students. Despite all the demands these projects place on her time, Orla still ensures her own artistic output is sustained. Evidence of this pursuit lines the walls, floor and desks of the studio.


Tiny Tots Tuesdays in Draiocht's Workshop  Room


Orla Kelly with fellow artist Andrew Carson


Orla Kelly - The Creative Creche Project - Draiocht

Works in various states of completion, call for attention, demanding definition from the artist. Each work of art maintains a different timescale as it struggles unhurried towards consummation. Orla has worked on one piece for two years and she allows the trembling seconds, minutes and days pass until the work of art, no longer require her presence and become a self contained reality. When this moment arrives the artist lets go and the work can leave the private domain of the studio and enter the public arena. On an end wall, three unstretched overlapping canvasses challenge each other for recognition. The predominant work is mainly grey with vibrant blues rising to the surface. Orla is inspired by aerial views of landscapes, where the land becomes compressed and more abstract.  Traceries of rivers resemble veins and arteries weaving across the breathing earth. In another canvas, a square charcoal grid covers the canvas surface, enclosing an irregular patch of pulsating yellow and midnight black which attempt to escape the rigid mesh like structure.

An interesting technique using wax, melted on paper or canvas and covered with black gesso is the source of striking imagery. One work generated with these materials on paper has a print like quality similar to an etching. A cell like oval form that lay hidden, submerged beneath the blackened wax is excavated and released by the artists hands. In areas the scouring is so vigorous that indentations cover the paper lending the surface a fractured but tactile characteristic. Innovative images are also fabricated using darkened wax on glass.  The wax is removed from the glass with needles or heat, the glass plate is than placed over photographic paper and exposed to light. The photographic paper is fixed and an image gradually emerges. The resultant image has a faded spectral aspect, lending them a claustrophobic but mysterious atmosphere.

On another wall six small canvases hold your interest as the lurching paint, skims across their surface groping blindly for enigmatic forms. In a larger work wild blues, skate around a dissolving white form as an intimate yellow allows the eye to linger momentarily above turbulent greens. Works like these are a struggling launch into the unknown. The artist must always surrender to the chaos of creativity without knowing the final outcome and making art becomes a leap of faith. Orla Kelly makes this impulsive leap of faith, each day she enters the studio.


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Desmond Kenny is an artist based in Hartstown, Dublin 15. He is a self taught painter, since he began making art in 1986 he has since exhibited widely in Ireland and abroad, solo shows include Draíocht in 2001, The Lab in 2006 and Pallas Contemporary Projects in 2008. His work is included in many collections including the Office of Public Works, SIPTU, and Fingal County Council. Kenny's practice also incorporates print making and he has been a member of Graphic Studio Dublin since 2004.

 

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By Draíocht. Tags: Reviews & Interviews, Visual Arts, Youth Arts, Desmond Kenny, Orla Kelly,

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