Josepha Madigan, Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, this week confirmed the Government’s commitment to provide €15m in funding for the European Capital of Culture (ECOC) project. This grant will be the largest single contribution to the €46m overall cost of the project. Other sources of funding include city and county councils (€6m each), the Melina Mercouri Prize of €1.5m from the European Commission and corporate sponsorship. As part of the city council’s contribution, the local business community committed to increased commercial rates for three years to support delivery of Galway 2020. Sources for the balance of funding of almost €18m have yet to be announced.
Funding of almost €1.2bn was announced today for investment in culture, heritage and Irish language over the next decade as part of Project Ireland 2040. Galway will receive €15m to prepare for its role as European Capital of Culture in 2020. Regional arts centres, theatres, museums, galleries, archives and artist studios will benefit from cultural infrastructure funding of €40m. Udarás na Gaeltachta will receive €105m to create 1000 jobs annually to maintain the social & economic fabric of Gaeltacht communities.
€285m will be spent on priority heritage projects including improving amenities at national parks and nature reserves including Ballycroy, Coole Park and Connemara, Glenveagh and Killarney National Parks. Biodiversity, agri-environments and peatland protection will also be included together with built heritage.
Funding of €460m has been earmarked for priority projects including renovations at National Library, National Archives, National Concert Hall and Irish Museum of Modern Art. Works at the National Museum, Abbey Theatre, Crawford Art Gallery and Chester Beatty Library are also included. Media production and audio visual industries will benefit from funding of €200m under the Creative Ireland programme and €10m will be made available for digitising nation collections.
Maoin Cheoil na Gaillimhe and the Regina Rogers School of Ballet came together this evening to present a splendid night of music and dance in Leisureland, Salthill. The Galway Youth and Clare Orchestras, under the direction of Hugh Kelly performed with Regina Rogers dancers. The programme included Bizet, Grieg, Mancini, Saint-Saens, Strauss and Tchaikovsky. Visiting past pupil Emer Lemihan, who is now in full time professional training in Brussels, danced the Dying Swan.
TG4 and Galway 2020 have agreed a partnership though which the 2020 programme will be covered ‘trí Ghaeilge’. Language is one of the three themes of the Galway 2020 programme and the Irish language is an integral aspect of the culture of the west of Ireland. Is comhpháirtíocht chruthaitheach, chliste é seo idir TG4 agus Gaillimh 2020, inar féidir linn comhoibriú le chéile chun solas cultúrtha Iarthar na hÉireann a chur ag scalladh ar fud na hEorpa agus níos faide i gcéin.
This day long festival is now in its second decade and this year includes world music and dance workshops and an evening performance from five orchestra including 180 musicians of all ages from the west of Ireland and a host of young dancers. ‘Introducing world music into this year’s festival brings many new elements’ says festival founder and artistic director, Katharina Baker. She composes a new piece of music for the festival each year and this year it’s a collage of Bollywood and Irish traditional sounds entitled The Bollywood Céilí which will be performed by 180 musicians and will feature Indian and Irish dancers.
Galway City Council has announced grants totalling €410,000 to 75 different organisations in the city including the Arts Festival, Druid, Macnas, Arts Centre, Film Fleadh, Baboró and many more. The budget for 2018 has increased by €25,000. The council’s Arts Office managed the application process and its Arts Funding Committee agreed the grants. Grants to music organisations included Galway Music Residency €24,000 and Music for Galway €16,000.
Hannah Kiely, CEO Galway 2020 and Dee Forbes, Director-General RTE have signed an agreement whereby RTE, the public service media organisation, will act as lead media partner for Galway’s year as the European Capital of Culture. The Galway 2020 programme will focus on the themes of Migration, Landscape and Language and will encompass all aspects of culture including art, sport, spectacle, food, digital, dance, music, theatre, circus, film, architecture and literature. Arts and culture are core pillars of RTE’s new five year strategy which aims to inspire audiences.
Bernard Kirk has retired from Galway Education Centre after 20 years as its Director. He is widely recognised as a driving force in the modernisation of education over the past twenty years and particularly in developing links with industry and the promotion of science and technology in the school curriculum. His name is synonymous with a number of innovative projects including Galway Science & Technology Festival, Africa Code Week, Robotics Ireland, Write a Book Project, Refugee Code Week, ExcitED and the Lego Leagues. Bernard is also a director of Galway Music Centre and Philanthropy Ireland. Bernard has recently established an educational charity, Camden Education Trust.
Music interest groups and public representatives attended this evening’s launch of a new campaign for a school of music in Galway City. The event was hosted by Maoin Cheoil na Gaillimhe at its new location in the Presentation Primary School on Newcastle Road. Speakers included Brendan Breslin of the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Chris Baldwin of Galway 2020, Terrence Flaherty of Moycullen NS, Hildegarde Naughton TD and Éamon Ó Cuív TD. The event also showcased the exceptional talents of award winning music students and international music teachers based in Galway. There was universal agreement that all stakeholders would now come together shortly to develop a strategic plan for presentation to government. Concern was expressed that in this day & age only 9% of the city’s 16,000 children have access to music tuition!
Galway Choral Association celebrated its 20th anniversary this evening with a gala concert at St Nicholas’ Collegiate Church. The 50 voice adult choir provides a platform for people of all ages including new and experienced signers. Founded in 1998 as an umbrella organisation, it became a limited company and a registered charity in 2006 and has raised thousands of euro for local charities. The choir, directed by Norman Duffy, presented Schubert’s Mas No 2 in G and was joined by St Nicholas’ Schola Cantorum. Also performing were Galway native soloists Aisling Kenny, Matthew Harrison, Peter Mannion and Carol Duffy who were accompanied by organist David Grealy who is a former member and son of founder member Tom Grealy.