Tuesday 28 January 2020

Super seventh for literary festival

At the launch of the Wexford Literary Festival in Enniscorthy Castle: Declan Dempsey, Roisin
Williams, Peter Murphy, Elizabeth Whyte and Helena Mulkearns
At the launch of the Wexford Literary Festival in Enniscorthy Castle: Declan Dempsey, Roisin Williams, Peter Murphy, Elizabeth Whyte and Helena Mulkearns

Brendan Keane

This year's Wexford Literary Festival has been officially launched and it promises to be one of the best ever.

Over the last seven years the festival has evolved into one of the finest live literature festivals in the country.

This year's event will take place from July 4 to 7.

The aim of the initiative is to attract national and international writers, readers and general lovers of literature together so they and enjoy an eclectic programme of readings, workshops and awards events.

The festival, which will take place in and around Enniscorthy, will also have a range of fringe events taking place including exhibitions, music, dance, and drama performances.

A spokesperson for the organisers commented: 'Each year we continue our programme of expansion and growth and have broadened the scope of the [event].'

This year there will be pop-up poetry, spoken word events and film screenings added to the overall programme.

'We are taking it out into the community with performances in some of our cafés and restaurants as well as our iconic buildings, the castle, the Athenaeum, the Church Institute and the Presentation Art centre,' said the spokesperson.

The festival provides fascinating talks and workshops with authors and people in the publishing industry and such is its success that people return to Enniscorthy each year especially for the event.

A spokesperson for the organisers said everyone involved is delighted to be expanding the programme this year to include Wexford town with the inclusion of Wexford Arts Centre's, 'The Diary Of Maynard Perdu', by Billy Roche in addition to the bookstore's literature themed window displays.

Among this year's awards will be: the Colm Toibin Short Story Award; the Anthony Cronin Poetry Award; the Billy Roche One Act Play Award; and the Eileen Gray Window Display Award.

There is an added category this year with the Cursed Murphy Spoken Word Award in addition to the Denis Collins visual story award, in memory of the late Mr Collins who was a passionate supporter and promoter of the arts in Wexford.

This year`s programme is the culmination of a lot of hard work by a diligent committee composed of: Richie Cotter, Anne Gilpin, Róisín Williams, Edel Kelly, Carol Long, Jarlath Glynn and Elizabeth Whyte.

The line-up of literary personnel scheduled to participate this year includes: Sinead Crowley, Felicity Hayes-Mccoy, Eamonn Wall, Niamh Devereux, Peter Murphy, Helena Mulkerns, Manchán Mangan, Emer Martin, Ruadh Butler, Paula Campbell, June Caldwell, Margaret Galvin, Zena O`Brien, Imelda O`Reilly, Nick Roche, Joe Brennan, Felispeaks, Dominic Palmer, John Cummins, Mary Cotter, John D Yates, Johnny Lappin and many others.

There will also be events in Byrne's bookstore and there will be morning coffee with Felicity Hayes-McCoy, afternoon tea with Sheila Forsey, and a self publishing workshop with Andrew Haworth.

'We are look forward to bringing yet another cultural and uplifting festival to the town and a showcase for all the magnificent talent that is out there in Enniscorthy and across Wexford,' said the spokesperson.

Wexford People

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