The highlight of my very busy summer was participating, as guest of honour, at the inaugural Clonakilty Organic Arts festival. I was so happy and proud to make a speech of gratitude to the people and town of Clonakilty for the inspiration and support they have given me over the years, and to read some Clonakilty born poems, at the opening of the festival in the hallowed environs of De Barras Folk Club. The festival was launched by the Mayor of Clonakilty and Sinn Fein Town Councillor Cionnaith Ó Súilleabháin. On the closing night of the festival we ( Me, Karl Parkinson, genius harpist Anja Bakker, and Tina Pisco) performed the first ever Bogmans Cannon Roadshow, to a packed house , again in De Barra’s folk club.
The non-funded festival – put together on a shoestring with community support – had numerous quality and well-attended events across the whole spectrum of artistic genres from circus through literature through theatre through to brass band and parades. A fabulous feature was the art trail – dozens of local businesses hosted work by locally based artists. Of the events I managed to attend, in between rehearsals for the roadshow, I enjoyed especially the ten-minute play showcases in O Donovans Hotel and the poetry reading by fellow Bogman’s Cannon contributor Joe Horgan in atmospheric Shanley’s Bar.
Most of the people of the town and many from further afield took part in the festival. It was the most accessible, participative and community-spirited arts festival I have ever been involved in and I would like to congratulate everyone involved for the major effort that went into organising it.
Below are some photos of the Bogmans Cannon Roadshow in De Barras Folk Club taken by my old, good friend Fidelma Holland.