A variety of over 80 events are on offer for the 18th annual Arts Festival which takes place this October from 18th to 28th.55 per cent of the programmed events are on offer free of charge. Three of Waterford’s finest festivals are rolled into one under the umbrella of the Imagine Arts Festival, including the Waterford Writers Weekend along with the John Dwyer Trad Weekend an eclectic and international events programme to choose from under Imagine Arts which celebrates theatre, dance, music, visual art, discussion and debate.
Renowned for its rich musical programme, the Imagine Arts Festival features an impressive schedule including performances with ‘The Delines’ arriving from Oregon in the US with their incredible ‘Soul Country’ sound. Their latest album ‘The Imperial’ has been greeted with acclaim across the music press, including 4-star reviews in MOJO and Q Magazines and 8/10 In UNCUT.
The Delines are a band at the peak of their powers and at the vanguard of Americana. Malojian is about to release his fifth album, his previous four being critically acclaimed, each sonically different but which share a consistently high level of songwriting. Malojian will showcase the as-yet-unreleased new songs, some of which were co-written with Jason Lytle of Grandaddy.
The Delines gig takes place at the Imagine Arts Festival on October 25th at the beautiful St. Patrick’s Gateway venue.Also on offer is a wonderful Cabaret speakeasy-style show at St. Patrick’s Gateway. Guests will enjoy the opportunity to be seated at café tables and enjoy delicious food and wine from Ardkeen Stores as they take in the life of ‘The Whistling Girl’ by the acclaimed Irish duo of singer/actress Honor Heffernan and composer Trevor Knight who will present their Dorothy Parker inspired new show.
Each of the show’s songs creates individual tableaux or dream moments from Parker’s psyche, conjuring up images from her tempestuous life of an outrageous celebrity in New York and as civil rights activist in America and Spain during the Spanish Civil War. The Whistling Girl takes place on October 24th at 8 pm.
A gig with 2018 Single of the Year winner Kitt Philippa is also on offer. KP plays piano, guitar, clarinet, prayer bowl and bicycle wheel, although raised on classical, the songs are strangely urban and often conveyed with digital sleight. Kitt Philippa is a very talented and thoughtful singer and musician who performs in an open and honest way, unburdened by external pressure. Kitt’s gig takes place at St. Patrick’s Gateway on Saturday, October 26th.
Dance lessons and concerts are on offer for the John Dwyer Trad Weekend, featuring a gala concert starring John Dwyer.
Sean-nós singer Ann Mulqueen joins Breda De Paor and David Power with poet Mark Roper to host a very special evening ‘In High Places’ based around the mysteries of the Comeragh Mountains. Trad Pub sessions, masterclasses and workshops plus singing sessions will also be on offer.
Amongst the highlights of the 2019 festival programme is the unveiling of a retrospective exhibition of works by Rosemary Higbee plus a gigantic visual art trail. A guided tour of the municipal collection at the new Waterford Art Gallery with Dr Eimear O’Connor HRHA.
Literary highlights at the Waterford Writers Weekend include the National Waterford Poetry Prize and Sunday Miscellany in the Theatre Royal. A conversation with authors Sheila O’ Flanagan, Ciara Geraghty and Melissa Hill, a reading with Willie Vlautin, a chat between crime writers Andrea Carter and Jo Spain. Sunday Brunch with Jim and Megan Nolan and a conversation with Ian Maleney.
Comedy will also headline at this year’s festival with stand up legend Kevin McAleer.
Family fun is on offer with Spraoi’s Wicked Woods and Waterford Youth Arts present Horrible Histories, unique walking tours of Waterford City led by candlelight with a depth of interesting characters to be met along the way.
A host of theatre and dance productions will be on offer including ‘24 Hours to Dance’ will see four professional dancers shown a venue on Tuesday, October 22nd and the next evening the audience will see the results of their improvisation in a very special and unique venue. ‘A Modern Day Parable’ will be presented by Outcast Theatre, ‘Madhouse’ will be showcased at the Theatre Royal a production written by Una Hackett and PJ Gallagher, starring Katherine Lynch and Shane O’Reilly.
The annual ‘Booze, Blaas and Banter’ event celebrating the City’s Quayside and maritime heritage will also offer lots of interesting chats and craic including a special tribute to Waterford poet and writer Sean Dunne by his friend and fellow poet Thomas McCarthy.
Join in the fun this October in Waterford from the 18th to 28th.