Friday, 28 February 2014

Moville Community College 'shook' the Derry Stage!

Last night saw the final performance of Moville Community College's 2014 musical, All Shook Up! The Millennium Forum was once more home to the school's most recent production. The kids had been rehearsing for just five months and their end result was quite simply a credit to them and their staff!

All Shook Up tells the story of the forbidden affection, music and dance in a small town in Midwest America during the 1950's. Run by the strict Mayor Matilda, its residents lack any spirit and desire to leave. But all changes when the smooth talking, leather clad Chad, with his blue suede shoes arrives in town on his bike! The town certainly does get 'all shook up' with this arrival!

The story unfolds from the beginning. From unrequited love, to forbidden love, to true love, it all happens on the stage for these teenagers. There is humour, music, song, dance, fun, and even some Shakespeare throughout this performance. Lessons are learned: primarily not to judge others and to accept everyone for who they are. And we learn that everyone falls for the wrong person every now and then! There's also some very good advice for teenagers (and indeed everyone) throughout the show. The song 'Follow That Dream' is sung a number of times. This can only serve to encourage our young people in pursuing their dreams throughout life. "You can kickstart your life" can apply to just about everyone. It's up to each individual to make the life they so wish, and 'kickstarting' it is just the beginning! A few words of encouragement are always needed, even from the stage! And the words "there's a whole world out there" is so very poignant.

The kids from Moville Community College had outstanding voices. Each unique in their own way. But for me, the onset of 'Can't Help Falling in Love' by Kate McCauley was the highlight of the musical performance. She blew me away with this. Deaglan Ferns aced his role as Chad, and Aoibheann McGarry, the greasy mechanic, shone throughout. One cannot forget the performance of Stephen Slattery from Muff. His transformation in character surely gives encouragement to many teenagers. The kids all excelled themselves. As did the staff who were involved in putting it together.

The stage setting for All Shook Up was exceptional. The props and costumes excellent. Credit to all who were involved. And how fabulous to see some past students assisting in the production this year. Principal Anthony Duggan spoke highly of everyone involved at the end of the night. He also stressed that "Performing Arts is vitally important to our school". That comes across very clearly in this production. Congratulations to all who were involved in 2014's All Shook Up!

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Donegal is Happy!

Shane Wallace from Donegal TV sent me the following! Sounds like fun!

Shane Wallace of Donegal TV and his team of volunteers will be traveling the length and breadth of this beautiful county of Donegal this Friday 28th Feb, Saturday 1st March & Sunday 2nd March to film the very popular video based on the Pharrell Williams song “Happy”. This song has taken the world by storm and happy people from all over the globe have filmed their own versions.,

The response to the venture has been amazing and we have the makings of a very happy weekend in Donegal. The video though is only 5 minutes long & not everyone who will be filmed will be featured on the video that’s the unfortunate part, but those that impress & showcase how Happy the people of Donegal are in their own style will get noticed.
 Thanks to everyone for their support and the local tourism organisations & community groups who have volunteered, without all your help this would not be possible.
The locations that the film crew will be attending & times are on our facebook page ;
Watch out for the convoy of Happy Cars, the camera crew, the team of volunteers, the photographers this Friday, Saturday & Sunday at the following locations.
Come on Join in the fun & let the world see just how “Happy” Donegal people are!!
Donegal Is Happy

Monday, 24 February 2014

'All Shook Up'!

'All Shook Up' is the musical by the students from Moville Community College 2014. It opens at Derry's Millenium Forum on Wednesday 26th February and runs for two consecutive nights.

Inspired by and featuring the songs of Elvis Presley the show is set in 1955. Into a square little town in  a square little state rides a guitar-playing roustabout who changes everything and everyone he meets in this hip-swiveling, lip-curling musical fantasy that'll have you jumpin' out of your blue suede shoes! It will feature classics such as 'Heartbreak Hotel', 'Jailhouse Rock', and 'Don't be Cruel'.

These kids have been working hard over recent months and the final production will be sure to impress one and all!

Monday, 17 February 2014

New Works by Jim Osbourne!

The Steamy Windows Collection by Jim Osborne opens at An Grianán Theatre in Letterkenny on Friday, 28th February 2014 at 7.30pm. This collection is a new departure for Osborne. The work has been carried out very quickly by the artist with his fingers on steamy glass. He says 'I create the mind's cues for perception of a figure, or figures. The background is provided by the real world behind the window caught with careful camera positioning, and captured before it is lost, seconds later. Nothing but vapour and light'.

The artist himself is a self-taught landscape artist who works in watercolour, acrylic and oils. His inspiration is his own surroundings, the light, the weather and its many moods. His work is in private collections in the US, Canada, Germany, Sweden, Uk and Ireland. He started painting on his return to Ireland in 2001 and was tutored in watercolour by a local artist. He has since developed his own style which is both bold and full of colour.

This latest exhibition of his works will run until April 26th 2014. It puts a whole new meaning on those 'steamy windows' which we all encounter!

Everyone is welcome to the opening on Friday 28th February and light refreshments will be served on the night.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

The 'Green Bun'!

Many of us who grew up in the 70′s and 80′s will surely remember the six pack of pastries with the ‘green bun’! Culture takes so many forms and surely the history of the said 'bun' is a culture all in itself! 
There was only one ‘green bun’ in the pastry pack and everyone in the household wanted that ‘green bun’! The pastries were all delicious but the ‘green bun’ was exceptionally so. In my house my big sister always claimed the ‘green bun’!
A couple of weeks ago I noticed on facebook that ‘The Lily Rose Sandwich Bar and Coffee Shop’ in Buncrana was advertising a special bun, The ‘Green Bun’, on Fridays and Saturdays only! So I just had to go see if it was the ‘green bun’ which I remember from childhood!
This morning my queries were solved. It is indeed the ‘green bun’ from all those years ago. Only, it’s now better than ever. Home made by ‘The Lily Rose’ in Buncrana this is a ‘must eat’! They are flying of the cake stand and it’s definitely worth popping in early in the day to ensure getting one!
As I sat researching a music interview this morning, I savoured a delicious coffee and a modern day ‘green bun’! Go check the ‘green bun’ out for yourself. You won’t be disappointed! 

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Other Voices, Derry 2014

The fabulous Glassworks building is once again playing host to a galaxy of local and international musical talent this coming weekend. Other Voices is once more in Derry!

The event will be streamed live to a number of local venues while the Banter Sessions and the IMRO Other Room will also be filmed in the City of Song. The hugely popular Other Voices Music Trail will run in venues and spaces across the city, bringing the spirit of Other Voices to neighbourhoods and communities across the Derry City Council area.

Aidan Gillen will once again host the show, presenting the recordings and events in both Dingle and Derry. Some of the artists scheduled to perform are David Gray, Hozier, Lisa O'Neill, Mogwai, Patty Griffin, John Grant, Asgeir, Agnes Obel and Lulu James, alongside many more.

Mayor of Derry, Cllr Martin Reilly said: 'I am delighted that Other Voices is set to return to the city following the success of the event during our 2013 UK City of Culture celebrations, an event which achieved phenomenal success in terms of involving local talent and showcasing our city to an international audience. This opportunity  will build on community involvement, educational programmes and national and international showcase for local talent from this city as well as inviting visitors to see what Derry has to offer.'

Tickets, once again, will be free and can be won through various online and media competitions so check out the website Stay up to date with announcements by logging onto the site and follow on Facebook 'Other Voices' and Twitter @othervoices

Another great weekend is definitely in store for Derry from Feb 7th-Feb 9th.

Monday, 3 February 2014

STOP 'NekNomination' NOW!

NekNomination’ is an online drinking game which has been sweeping the nation since January 2014. Thought to have originated in Australia, it involves completing a drinking dare and then nominating someone else to do the same. The nominated person has just 24 hours to complete the dare. All dares are recorded and uploaded to the social media site, Facebook. Apparently it is ‘uncool’ NOT to accept the dare. And so it continues. 
‘NekNomination’ is prominent among young Irish students and it is rife at the present time. Suzanne Costello of Alcohol Action Ireland said: “The online nature of the challenges mean the peer pressure aspect of it has far greater reach than traditional drinking games would have had. It’s picking up a momentum. There is a time pressure on it, you have to respond to the challenge within 24 hours. People are trying to give the image they are continuously partying, up for challenges and having a great time.”
Over the past weekend two young men in Ireland have died as a result of taking part in ‘NekNomination’. Alcohol Action Ireland said in a statement : “While some may see this as a game, the consequences of drinking large volumes of alcohol in a short period of time can have very real consequences for those taking part. “We would call on people to look after their health and wellbeing by not participating in this ‘game’ and to also protect their friends from the serious risks associated with it by not nominating them to take part in it.”
As a mother of a student in the present day, I’m horrified by what I’m watching on Facebook. I’m terrified that he or his friends will be next. It’s time to put a stop to this game. Two young lives have been lost. That’s two lives too many. Surely it’s much more ‘cool’ to be ‘uncool’ than to be 'DEAD'. Our young people must start saying 'NO' to NekNomination.
Students take heed. Don’t be responsible for the loss of another life. Knock ‘NekNomination’ on the head now. Do it for the memory of the young men who have died this weekend. Ensure this is NOT allowed to happen again. Stand up for life and say NO to ‘NekNomination’.