South East Ireland Tourism
Visitor Guide to Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Waterford & Wexford
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Arts festivals in Carlow, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Waterford and Wexford.
The fabulous medieval city of Kilkenny makes a stunning backdrop to its annual international arts festival. Whether you’re into theatre, art, dance, opera, literature, music or all of the above, you’ll find a mouth-watering collection of the very best in home-grown and international acts coming to Kilkenny. Every year, for 10 days in August, Kilkenny comes alive with a feast of artistic entertainment for all. The city’s oldest and largest non profit festival now draws more than 80,000 visitors annually who come and partake in all that Kilkenny has to offer.
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Founded and curated by long time Irish residents, Swiss violinist Maya Homburger and English bass player Barry Guy, the Barrow River Arts Festival presents, in one packed weekend, a programme of classical music, free improvised jazz, theatre and visual art in two beautiful settings along the River Barrow in Counties Kilkenny and Carlow - Duiske Abbey and Borris House. Taking place annually in April, box Office: 059 917 2400
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The Byrne/Perry Summer School was set up to examine Irish history and literature from the eighteenth century onwards in an objective, professional and learned manner. The school has a broad appeal to those with an interest in how the last two centuries of Irish history, have shaped contemporary Ireland, north and south. At each Summer school we have always had a very rich mixture of participants from Ireland North and South; Great Britain and the U.S. The Byrne/Perry Summer School is held on the last weekend of June from Friday evening to Sunday afternoon,
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Cashel Arts Fest is a 10 day festival of music, visual art, theatre, comedy, film, talks, workshops, family and children's events. A voluntary committee work hard year-round to bring an exciting and varied programme of events to Cashel each November. The festival endeavours to provide opportunities for all sections of the community to engage with a variety of art disciplines in an enjoyable and meaningful way, liasing with local primary and secondary schools as well as youth groups and organisations involving older people. Workshops for young and old will take place throughout the festival.
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The Clonmel Junction Festival is a nine-day annual cultural celebration taking place in Clonmel, South Tipperary. Having begun in 2001 with nine events over five days, the event has doubled in size each year and now hosts over 70 events. For nine days, the town is transformed with hand-made banners and flags adorning the streets with the theatres, pubs and cafes pulsating with vibrant music and theatre from all over the world.
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Éigse Carlow Arts Festival is one of Ireland’s largest arts festivals and the first major summer festival of the year. A ten-day celebration of visual art, performance, dance, music, literature, street spectacle, craft and film, Éigse brings renowned international and national artists and performers to the South East for a series of exhibitions, performances, recitals, workshops and talks for young and old, visitor and local alike. Exhibitions and talks are free of charge as are a number of the lunchtime music recitals and dance performances. The street entertainment adds to the feeling of excitement which is everywhere in this Barrow side community.
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Imagine Arts Festival is a unique celebration of the arts in Waterford City. The festival showcases all forms of the arts, from film and theatre, to music and dance plus everything in between. It gives everyone an opportunity to experience and participate in a broad range of creative arts. Imagine features live performances and special workshops for all ages and interests. The festival also gives new local young talent a platform to exhibit their work along with established international artists. Events are held in a number of locations across the City with some free events. The festival takes place annually in late October.
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The John Roberts Weekend Festival is an event with a difference. Waterford city celebrates the life and works of architect John Roberts, annually in mid-April. His name is always closely associated with Georgian architecture. The son of a builder – John had a little architectural training in London. His big break came in 1746 when Bishop Richard Chenevix asked him to complete the New Bishop’s Palace. Other achievements include designing and building both the city’s cathedrals (Catholic and Protestant), Waterford City Hall, the residence of William Morris (now the Harbour Commission Headquarters and Chamber of Commerce), Leper Hospital on John’s Hill and the Assembly rooms on the Mall (now the Theatre Royal and City Hall). The event opens with the R.I.A.I. Irish Architecture Awards Exhibition at the Waterford Institute of Technology. Overall it’s an eventful 3 days with a very full programme of talks, lectures, tours, a wreathe laying ceremony, ecumenical choral service and an art exhibition. Some events are free of charge while others require an entrance fee. An all-in-ticket can be purchased from Garter Lane Arts Centre on O’Connell Street.
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The Kilkenny Rhythm N’ Roots Festival takes place over the May Bank holiday weekend each year. Running annually since 1998, it has attracted some of the finest acts in Americana music such as Ryan Adams, Guy Clarke and Ray La Montagne to name but a few. All types of Americana music can be heard over the 4-day festival – country, blues, folk, bluegrass, jazz, soul and rockabilly, so no matter what your taste in music, there’s sure to be something for everyone. The festival has over 80 gigs throughout the weekend, a lot of which are free of charge.
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The Lismore Festival of Travel Writing takes place in June each year. The word 'Immram' derives from the Old Irish im ram meaning 'rowing about'. In Ireland, there is a long tradition of making journeys and of the ensuing descriptions. The Focus of the festival is on travel writing and literature with a different theme is explored at each year. The programme includes literary presentations by major national and international travel writers and bilingual workshops. The festival programme is packed with a variety of fringe events, including an International visual arts exhibition at Lismore Castle Arts, exhibition and events at Lismore Library. The primary aim is to deliver a high quality international literary festival driven by the long-term cultural benefits to the participants, the town of Lismore and the greater South East region. . This is the only festival dedicated to the medium of travel writing in Ireland. By bringing a host of top international and national authors the festival is giving both the presenters and participants a unique opportunity for interaction and exposure to this genre, while also catering for the mainstream literary area.
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