Friday 21 October 2016

Global celebrations for the 1916 Rising to reach Amazon and Helsinki

Crowds outside the shelled GPO in 1916
Crowds outside the shelled GPO in 1916

From the depths of the Amazon to the glittering metropolis of Tokyo, the centenary of the 1916 Rising will be marked with a series of events around the world.

Other locations to feature in the special commemorative programme include Buenos Aires, Melbourne, Abu Dhabi, New York, Washington, Helsinki, London and Sydney.

Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan said the events were being organised by Irish embassies abroad.

"I invite Ireland's global friends and family to come together to remember the events of 100 years ago and, importantly, to celebrate the progress we have made over the last century and look forward," he said.


Hundreds of events will take place in dozens of cities as part of the "Global and Diaspora" strand of the Ireland 2016 Commemorative Programme.

It will operate in partnership with other organisations, such as Culture Ireland.

"This will be an important opportunity to remember a key moment in Irish history and to remember it with Ireland's citizens, friends and international partners around the world," said Mr Flanagan.

"The Easter Rising took place in an international context - indeed, it was headline news in the New York Times for days after Easter 1916.

"It is fitting that the commemorations will reach beyond our shores and bring Ireland's story to a whole new audience in a new way.

"Our missions around the world and their partners have produced interesting and diverse programmes, many with strong local resonances, such as a Helsinki conference which will explore historic parallels between Ireland and Finland."

Finland will celebrate the century of its independence in 2017.

"In Tokyo, a conference will examine the 1916 Rising with an Asian perspective, while Sean O'Casey's The Plough and the Stars will be staged in Abu Dhabi."

The commemoration will also include a three-month cultural and historical programme in Buenos Aires.

It will explore the links that existed then and now between Ireland and Argentina, which is home to Ireland's largest Spanish speaking diaspora.

A digitisation project in Melbourne will highlight the scrapbooks of Irish scholar and Melbourne doctor Nicholas O'Donnell, who tracked the reporting of the Rising in the Australian press.

An exhibition and seminar in the Brazilian capital of Brasilia and Manaus in the Amazon will reflect the life and work of Roger Casement, who spent time working in the region.

Images from the Sean Sexton collection featuring photos of the Rising will be on display in the Photographers Gallery in central London.


A three-week festival of Irish arts and culture will be held in the John F Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts in Washington DC.

Celebrations in the US will also include a community commemorative event in Pier A in New York, reflecting Irish and Irish-American culture.

Wherever Green Is Worn, a musical and narrative per-formance remembering the story of 1916 through the medium of song, will be staged in Sydney.

Full details of the "Ireland 2016: Global and Diaspora Programme" can be found on the websites www.ireland.ie and www.dfa.ie

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