Saturday, August 13, 2022


By Elizabeth Lee

CARLOW town will be brimming with music, art, theatre and fun when the Carlow Fringe Festival takes place this weekend.

An Gairdín Beo, a community garden on the Dublin Road, will be the main hub, where many of the activities will take place, while other venues include La Boheme, College Street; the Made in Carlow art shop; Scraggs Alley on Tullow Street; and Club d’Art in Pembroke.

Maurice O’Reilly, who runs the art shop on Tullow Street, is one of the main organisers of the fringe festival and he says that the programme of events has something that will appeal to any lover of music, art and culture.

“One of the highlights of this year’s festival is an exhibition of the history of Éigse that’s taking place in Carlow Library. Éigse started in 1979 as an Irish language festival and it’s developed from there. The exhibition should open up some interesting conversations, we hope,” said Maurice.

The diverse range of events in this year’s festival include a talk on beekeeping by members of Carlow Beekeepers in Scraggs Alley and An Gairdín Beo. The latter venue will be a hive of activity, with a pottery-making demo, a yoga session, craft stalls and trad sessions all taking place. A busking competition is also promised, as is an open invitation for people to draw Carlow Castle. Music-wise, Niall Toner, Gala Hutton and Michael Furey are on the bill, and for literary buffs there’s a literary evening taking place in Club d’Art.

Over in Scraggs Alley, punters will be rolling in the aisles as local comedians take to the stage and do the hardest job – making other people laugh!

Taking place in The Good Room of Scraggs front bar on Friday 12 August, the comedy night will be hosted by Shannon Basso Gaule. He will be joined by headliner Emman Idama, Stewart Lambert, Fiona Frawley, Reggie Pollock and James Cadden. Tickets are €10 and available on Eventbrite.

Then, on 14 Sunday, August Sinead Walsh hosts an incredible line up featuring some of Ireland’s brightest stand-up stars at The Sunday Rollover!

The Made in Carlow art shop will host a wonderful exhibition of Nigerian art, with multiple artists from Nigeria taking part. The exhibition will be launched at 6pm on Saturday 6 August. Elsewhere, three properties on Dublin Street have been repurposed and will turn into pop-up galleries, showcasing some of the area’s best artists.

This year, the organisers are particularly excited about a virtual reality tour of the festival, which will feature all the exhibitions and activities alongside their sponsors, where people can tune in and see what’s going on.

For a full list of events, check out the Carlow Fringe Festival Facebook page or call into Maurice at the Made in Carlow shop on Tullow Street.


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