Sunday, May 13, 2012

Early Summer Events

Winter Summer is coming, and the always vibrant cultural life in Dublin is gearing up. Our silly season of course is not happening until later in the year, with various festivals taking place concurrently, but anyone hungry for stimulating things to do in the (supposedly) warmest months of the year will be well served. I have gathered up a series of snapshots of the current and forthcoming offerings.

Dublin Dance Festival opened on Friday and will remain on the floor until 26 May. This celebration of contemporary dance in all its manifestations is now on its eighth year, fifth as an annual festival. Aside from expected stage performances, the city can look forward to groups of colourful and beautiful people spreading onto the streets. Luca Silvestrini's Protein will dance the (In)Visible Dancing Finale on Grafton Street on Sunday 20 May at 4 pm. They advise people to keep on eye out for peculiar characters on the run up to the day itself! Intriguing. One of my own favourite dance forms is classical Indian dance, but this tends to be a very rare delicacy indeed in Ireland. Thankfully, Meeting House Square in Temple Bar will be treated to a performance by Divya Kasturi on Saturday 26 May at 7pm. Both these events are free. For the rest of the programme and booking of tickets for other events you can visit the festival website.

Likewise on Friday, a new exhibition opened at the Chester Beatty Library. The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter scrolls are believed to be the earliest surviving illustration of the oldest Japanese work of prose fiction. The Irish Times called the tale 'the original Japanese sci-fi story' and their review beautifully summarises the plot of this tale, well known in Japanese literature but mostly unknown to us. 

Wednesday May 16 will be Literature Night. Words On the Streets will feature 'well known Irish personalities' reading European contemporary fiction in various locations of the city centre. To the best of my perception, this has not been publicised much. I only learned about it from a small poster at the Tara Street Station. Nonetheless, after some searching, the list of readers and the readings can be found here, on the City of Literature website.

International Museum Day will take place on May 18. Again, this seems to be little publicised, or indeed little made of, but a few events such as free/reduced entries or special tours are listed here. I am pleased to see involvement by the An Post Museum, which I am told is excellent, although I haven't yet had a chance to visit myself.

Looking forward to June, Dublin Biennial Pop-Up 2012 will be an ambitious international exhibition of contemporary visual art taking place in the Point Village, 15 - 24 June. Featuring an installation by Yoko Ono, this is the inaugural year of the exhibition, which has undoubtedly been powered by the success of the Dublin Contemporary last year. We wish the best of luck to them and will eagerly await more information.

There is a lot going on in this wonderful city - get out into it!


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