A night of culture and 'craic' – and it's all free
A NIGHT of culture and 'craic' will take place free of charge in Dublin and 33 other cities, towns and regions next month.
The annual nationwide Culture Night will take place on Friday, September 20, consisting of live music, dance, theatre, storytelling, literature, visual arts, tours, workshops and exhibitions.
A highlight this year will be the RTE Concert Orchestra performing an exclusive, one-off performance in Meeting House Square in Dublin's Temple Bar.
They will perform a specially commissioned work by composer Stephen Gardner. People of all ages will "explore, experience and enjoy an evening of adventure and discovery" and there will be no charges for any of the events.
Dublin Bus will provide free transport to some events.
Last year, a record 300,000 people took to the streets across the country to enjoy the unique experience of Culture Night.
Arts Minister Jimmy Deenihan said: "Figures show increased tourist numbers for the nationwide event. And in this, the year of the Gathering, even greater numbers can be expected to participate. I would like to personally commend all the volunteers and staff."
Among the highlights this year are:
* A collaborative art exhibition featuring work from visual trailblazer Maser at Butler Gallery's Red Square in Kilkenny
* A unique initiative celebrating 100 Books with a difference in Cavan
* Historic tours of inner city Dublin with the Mountjoy Square Society
* An opportunity to learn to play orchestral instruments made from food with the Fruit and Veg Orchestra in Belfast
* An Edible Art installation in The Doorway Gallery, Dublin.
Culture Night Tours will take people to cultural gems hidden around Dublin city, with tour guides taking participants to at least three galleries each.
Among new night-time openings are the Zoological Museum, The Little Museum of Dublin, Archbishop Marsh's Library, Big Smoke Writing Factory and The Mendicity Institution Trust.
Ray Yeates, Interim CEO of Temple Bar Cultural Trust, said: "We encourage both discerning culture fans and newcomers alike to get out on the streets on Friday, September 20 across the 34 regions."
Dublin Bus will provide free buses every 20 minutes starting on Bachelor's Walk, Aston Quay and Trinity College, which will transport visitors to and from their favourite cultural quarters.
The company will also stage a programme of performances on their buses, including music and the spoken word.
The first Culture Night was held in 2006. Details can be found at www.culturenight.ie