Arts events for all ages and tastes run from the 26th March to the 6th April.
The Five Lamps Arts Festival was enthusiastically launched in Dublin’s Custom House on Thursday 27th March at 7pm by journalist Roisin Ingle followed by rousing and dramatic performances by local/ songwriter Shaz Oye, the Dublin Georgian Choir and a Fire Dance.
Róisín, who lives in the area, wrote enthusiastically about the festival in the Irish Times on Saturday 29th March. ‘We have a festival you know. The Five Lamps Festival. I met Róisín Lonergan, a theatre studies lecturer working locally, in Cusack’s, the North Strand’s cosy, old-school pub stuffed with sea-faring knick knacks. With the support of Dublin City Council Róisín and her band of volunteers have organised the Five Lamps Festival for the past seven years because one day she decided the area deserved a festival. It does.
I was chuffed to be asked to launch it earlier this week, in the Custom House with a fire dance and a Georgian choir and the amazing singer Shaz Oye and loads of my neighbours. It was great to hear about the events, many of which are free.’
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The Five Lamps Festival is an annual event with a unique collaborative quality. Marino College of Further Education works with local groups, artists and residents of the North Strand area to create a distinct and dynamic festival. The students of Marino College are an indispensable part of this venture.
Marino Theatre Studies Students perform Othello
In the lead up to the festival, the Theatre students will take to the stage of the Sean O’Casey Theatre for three performances of the Shakespeare classic Othello, on the 25th and 26th of March. The poster for this event was designed by Martin O’Grady, a Graphic Design student of the college.
SWAN Youth Service: A Different Light
Among a number of exhibitions running for the duration of the festival is A Different Light from SWAN Youth Service. The initiative aims to encourage and publicise the involvement of young people in their communities, and the exhibition of Owen Butler, a student of the college, is an example of their endeavours. Tattooed Humans of Dublin attempts to challenge the views of those opposed to this form of body art, through images and accompanying interviews. His work will be displayed in Marino College.
Photography EXPO: Five Lamps Framed
There is more student involvement in another photographic exhibition, the Five Lamps Framed series. It comprises of individual portraits of people drawn from a cross section of the Five Lamps community, including some of those studying at Marino College. Photographer Cormac O’Connell chose to display the individuals where they lived or worked, foregoing the more formal studio settings. The images he has captured can be viewed in St. Joseph’s OCB over the festival period.
Beauty Students: Body and Soul Treatments
The beauty students of the college will be running their own event on the afternoon of the festival’s initiation, the 27th Massage, a component of the Body and Soul element of the festival. This will take place in the Beauty Therapy Room of the college from 2-4pm. of March. They are offering a Holistic Indian Head and Back Massage, a component of the Body and Soul element of the festival. This will take place in the Beauty Therapy Room of the college from 2-4pm.
The festival theme “Making Connections” is emulated through many events of the festival, quite notably in the Community Concert on Friday 28th March. Local choirs and musicians will perform as part of this concert, including Marino College, Larkin Community School, Ballyfermot College and local singer/songwriter Shaz Oye.
As well as a Community Concert, the Five Lamps have coordinated a Community Theatre event taking place at the Peacock Theatre on Thursday the 3rd of April, presenting some of Niamh Gleeson’s work. Community Development Class of the BTEI will perform plays Time to Go and The License. Next the Theatre Performance students take to the stage for Turlehydes, joined by children from the Sherrif Street After School Education and Support Programme, and A Likely Story, with SWAN Youth Service.
The Community and/or education.
These central festival themes were offered to a group of visual artists, the site-specific Connolly House building being the basis for their projects, leading to the creation of the“Community” Visual Art Exhibition. In a response to the building’s Brutalist-style architecture, Cora Cummins involved those studying there to re-create archive photographs from the Bauhaus College of the 1920s and 30s. This along with the works of four other artists will be presented in the very building which inspired them, from the 29th March to the 6th of of April.
Tapping into the French Enlightenment Salons of the Eighteenth Century, the Five Lamps Conversation Salon will provide a modern-day alternative for transformational conversations. In the student canteen of Marino College, a relaxed atmostphere for tea, coffee, cake and chat will be hosted by Heather Bourke and some of the Administration students. A conversation menu will give options of topics to discuss, or you can suggest your own. Graphic Design student Valentina Manea designed the Conversation Salon poster, among many other posters in the festival.
Day of Dance
On Tuesday the 1st of April, there will be an opportunity for current CDETB students to get involved in an initiative between Marino College and CDETB, the DAY OF DANCE. Students will be able to take part in classes of contemporary and jazz dance forms, and to see informal studio performances from leading dance practitioners in Ireland. In the evening after the workshops, the Arts Students of Roslyn Park College will perform La Luna de Federico directed by Loli Ros Gordon, followed by Between the Absence, by TONNTA and JK Ensemble.
While there are many of the present students involved across the spectrum of the festival, the relationship has been seen to continue when they finish their studies there. The Five Lamps Film Festival on the 2nd of April is run by past pupil of Marino College, Darragh Haighney. The Savoy Cinema on O’Connell Street will host this event featuring a selection of films across a wide range of genres including documentaries, animations and horror.
Aside from the direct involvement of students in certain events, there are a great number of student volunteers who ensure the smooth running of operations. The Five Lamps Arts Festival could not achieve what it does without their support and enthusiasm.
For more information contact www.fivelampsarts.ie