herald

Monday 17 December 2018

Rain fails to deter culture vultures

IT ONLY comes around once a year and last night Dubliners flocked to landmarks around the capital to make the most of culture night.

The city was abuzz with people excited at the chance to do something a little different on a Friday night.

The patchy rain throughout the night failed to dampen anyone's spirits and crowds lined the streets from the early evening to pack as much of the city's 196 free events into the night as possible.

In The Ark in Temple Bar the children's gallery was full of excitement.

Hands-on tours of the centre's new ceramic exhibition were on offer - and it was certainly in demand.

The 180 tickets were snapped up in 20 minutes and the night went down a treat.

"Culture night always provides a nice atmosphere, it's very different," Al Russell of The Ark told the Herald.

Youngsters were able to get their hands dirty and try clay modelling if inspiration struck while touring the Make Shapes show.

"Culture night is great. We always find a batch of people coming in who say they had always planned on coming in to us and never got around to it," Mr Russell said.

On The Ark's doorstep hundreds of people gathered to hear RTE's concert orchestra perform. They were followed on stage by Sean Rocks of Radio One.

The well-known host guided culture vultures through a night of comedy and drama.

Meanwhile, early birds headed to Smock Alley Theatre for a rare glimpse behind the scenes.

Osgar Dukes explained the significance of the independent theatre: "It was the first Theatre Royal built outside of London in 1662 and was later turned into a church," he said.

The Gaiety School of Acting also allowed fledgling actors to step into the limelight.

On Meeting House Square hundreds of people gathered for a range of musical performances.

Often hidden parts of the city were revealed to the public last night with Merrion Mews and the Free Masons' Hall Dublin open their doors to visitors.

hnews@herald.ie

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