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Cruthú Arts Festival weekend schedule

At a glance – Cruthú Arts Festival Weekend

The Cruthú Arts Festival returns to Longford town from July 27th to July 30th with lead-in events from July 19th. Featuring art, theatre, spoken word and music, the Cruthú Arts Festival brings the arts to life in a way that is accessible to everyone.

Street art was originally brought to Longford by the Cruthú Arts Festival in 2015 and this year it returns to further lift the face of Longford town. Growing every year, renowned street artists from across the world come to use the walls of Longford as their canvas, creating something truly superb. This year street artists Pat Taffe, D.M.C., LeBas, J.M.K., Kimx and Illjin will leave their mark on Longford’s walls.

The pop-up galleries are back, with artists filling up the otherwise empty shops with craft and creativity. Over ten properties have been ear-marked to re-open their doors featuring artists from across the country.

Longford’s Libraries will also play host to two cultural evenings in Longford Library, Longford town. On July 24th, the County Longford launch of Windows Publications Authors and Artists Introduction Series, will take place, while on July 26th, there will be the official opening of the Ambrose Donnelly art exhibition. Ambrose’s mother, a lady who was born into the Castlepollard Mother & Baby Home, is the inspiration behind many of the paintings which form part of this exhibition. Writers from across the county will read at both of these events.

Highly acclaimed Longford artist, Shane Cullen, will open the festival with the launch of a retrospective exhibition featuring some of his most iconic works. Bianca Fachel, a singer-songwriter from Brazil, will perform at this official opening in the upstairs of the Old Provider Building.

Theatrical performances will take place in the Backstage Theatre with ‘Eggsistentialism’ (July 28th), while the ReActor series (plays written by local writers and produced by local directors) will take place in Ballymahon Library (July 19th) and Granard Library (July 20th) and John Browne’s, Little Blue Room (July 29th).

Music will fill Longford across the weekend with the ‘Slam Night’ of spoken word and music (July 28th) upstairs in the Market Bar, Cafe Sessions – bringing music to different cafe spaces around town and of course the unique Cruthú Arts Festival ‘St John’s Church’ gigs. This year St John’s is across two nights with music from David Kitt (July 29th), Áine Cahill (July 30th) and Katie Laffen (July 29th).

On Saturday morning, July 29th, it’s time to talk digital with a blog writing workshop from Rachel Masterson at Longford Library.

Family events include ‘Square Eyes’ children’s art workshop on the Market Square (July 28th – 30th), a family fun day, Little Gem Puppets (July 29th), story-telling with Maggi McKenna (July 29th). On Sunday (July 30th), the focus turns to Ardagh Heritage and Creativity Centre where the Billberry Walk and the launch of the King of the Back of the Hill Anthology will take place at 11am. This is followed by readings from Esther Gobl Ní Uallain.

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