Up early on Saturday morning after just a few hours sleep for a wonderful breakfast meeting with Helena Mulkerns who works at Wexford Arts Centre on the Cacamilis Cabaret where we performed last night for their Christmas Dinner.
She was the brilliant host of the event and is one of the organisers along with the Arts Centre Manager Elizabeth Whyte and also Alex Caulfield.
Then we jumped back in the car and went to Ennischorty to The Presentation Centre managed by Mairead Linnen. What a beautiful venue, wonderful restoration .. this is the old Nun's chapel where performances are held.
When we were there an artist was running workshops with local children. Caroline also attended the meeting a local poet and artist as well as Aileen Lambert who organises a traditional singing project.
After a look round the stunning venue we went to the town council offices to have our meeting. Here we are looking at the beautiful gardens. Mairead organised for the local children to plant bulbs in the garden. What a wonderful way to give ownership to the children who will have so much joy coming back to the centre.
In the store cupboard are the huge puppets made at the centre for one of the town's parades.
They were made in a day.
Thinking ... wouldn't it be wonderful to make Celtic Heroine puppets like these on day one of our festival and then parade them on day 2.
Mairead then very kinldy organised for us all to go to the Ennischorty Castle Art Exhibition ...
We then followed Mairead for an hour and half drive over to Bunmahon to the Gealach Gorm Theatre run by Angela Mulcahy.
She has pulled together the community and managed to make a little theatre out of half a squash court ... on a shoestring, that offers regular productions and drama classes to the community.
It is also the home of the Songwriting Festival she organised this year and is going ahead for next year ...
Angela is also a film producer and she has been working with Sean Corcoran and 2 film makers from New Zealand to make a documentary on the Irish perspective of the artist Edith Collier who spent 6 months painting in the village in the early 1900's. The film was being launched at The Copper Coast Proejct in Kill.
We performed our Child's Christmas in Wales piece before the film in this absolutely stunning venue with a full house ... how wonderful to see the community all together to watch the film
Left to right this is Mairead Linnen, Deidre Starr with myself and Danielle. Deidre is one of the singers who worked on the sound track for the film and she performed a beautiful traditional unaccompnaied song ... we are hoping Deidre can come to sing with us in Wales.
We got back to the hotel very late indeed and slept for a few hours before getting up at 5am and heading back to the ferry in Rosslaire
Whilst on the boat I spoke with the manager and asked him to display leaflets on behalf of the National Botanic Garden of Wales which he kindly did and gave a contact so that they can always be displayed at the ferry.
I also spoke to him about applying for support to bring Irish and Welsh performers back and for across on the ferry to take part in the festivals and events that we had connected with ... he kindly gave me the contact details of where I should write to ask for support which I will be doing later this week
So as you can see it was quite a trip! In just a few days we made contact with so many amazing people and events ... magic created
The National Botanic Gaden of Wales
Suzanne Hughes Owen
And I think I will thank myself too for making it so! Thank you Cheryl Beer ;)