Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Clare County Library rewards Summer Reading Stars

The presentation of certificates to the children who completed Summer Stars, the Summer Reading Programme promoted by Clare County Library will take place for children in the North, West and East of the county in the coming days. On the 28th of September storyteller Liz Weir will entertain a large gathering in the Bellbridge House Hotel where children from Ennistymon, Lisdoonvarna, Miltown Malbay, Kilrush, Kilkee, Kildysart and Kilmihil libraries will attend a special library event to reward them for taking up the challenge to read at least six books during school summer holidays.

Liz Weir is a professional storyteller who works with all age groups promoting the traditional art for which Ireland is world famous. A children’s librarian by training, she now travels the world telling stories to adults and children, organising workshops on storytelling, and speaking at courses for parents, teachers and librarians. Her wealth of stories is drawn from both the oral and written traditions. Her publications for children include Boom Chicka Boom, a book full of magic and drama that comes with a nine track CD of stories, old and new, with participation rhymes and playful verses. Here, There and Everywhere is a collection of stories which is also available on CD, from many lands, for children aged six and upwards and she has also written a delightful and moving picture book called When Dad Was Away about a child whose father is in jail. Tales of the Road is another of her children’s books about Irish Traveller life. Liz Weir has told her stories to people of all ages on five continents. She has performed in pubs and prisons and hospital rooms. She worked on stages in the mighty Vanderbilt Hall of New York’s Grand Central Station and in the Royal Albert Hall. Clare County Library staff are delighted to welcome her to Clare this September to share her stories with readers young and old.

The Summer Stars Awards ceremonies for libraries in North and West Clare will take place on September the 28th beginning at 6.30pm at the Bellbridge House Hotel, Spanish Point and on the following evening, September the 29th at Sean Lemass Public Library Shannon at 6.30pm also.

Meanwhile Scariff Public Library staff welcomed all who had completed the Summer Stars Reading Challenge in the East of the county to their presentation of certificates on Saturday 24th September. Children and parents alike joined in a fun-for-all library day with facepainting and a host of arts and craft activities throughout the afternoon. The staff at Scariff Public Library wish to acknowledge that this year’s Summer reading programme has been extremely well received with approximately 130 children taking part.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

New book by author with Ennis roots

Curiosity about her Ennis-born grandmother and an innocent question she asked about a family name instigated the research that led to Mary Burns’s new book, The Reason for Time, an historical novel set in Chicago during one wild ten-day period in July, 1919.

Her Grandmother never talked much about the past, in Ireland or in Chicago, but Burns learned that she had lived in the city during those hot July days that began with a dirigible crashing into a downtown Chicago bank, and ended with the most deadly of the race riots that occurred in twenty-five U.S. cities that year. As she scrolled through the microfilm containing old newspapers, Burns thought, this has to be a novel.

Her first person character, Maeve Curragh, who comes from Ennis just as Burns’s grandmother did and may have some other things in common with her, works at the Chicago Magic Company in the grand Marquette Building and happens to have been on an errand to the bank just before the dirigible fell. Another Clare notable, Eamon de Valera, was also visiting Chicago that week, but no doubt navigating higher levels of society than Maeve, who becomes smitten with a streetcar conductor, Desmond Malloy.

“It’s all in the power to make people believe,” Maeve’s boss, the magician Mr. R frequently tells his small staff. Coming from a culture rich with superstitions, and having been born at the hour that she was sets up Maeve for wonder and possibility.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Man Booker Prize announces 2016 shortlist

Two British, two US and two Canadian authors have seen their books shortlisted for the 2016 Man Booker Prize.
The shortlist is as follows:

Paul Beatty (US) - The Sellout
Deborah Levy (UK) - Hot Milk
Graeme Macrae Burnet (UK) - His Bloody Project
Ottessa Moshfegh (US) – Eileen
David Szalay (Canada-UK) - All That Man Is
Madeleine Thien (Canada) - Do Not Say We Have Nothing

The 2016 winner will be announced on Tuesday 25 October in London’s Guildhall. Judges for the prize this year are Amanda Foreman (chair), Jon Day, Abdulrazak Gurnah, David Harsent and Olivia Williams. Last year, the Man Booker Prize was won by Marlon James for A Brief History of Seven Killings.

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Celebrate 100 years of Roald Dahl

2016 marks 100 years since the birth of Roald Dahl - the world’s number one storyteller. To celebrate Lisdoonvarna Public Library and Ennistymon Public Library are holding craft workshops and film screenings.

On Wednesday 14th September there will be a Make your own Fantastic Mr. Fox Mask workshop in Ennistymon Public Library from 3.15pm to 4.00pm. Later that evening there will be two film screenings:
Fantastic Mr. Fox at 4.00pm
Matilda film at 6.30pm

On Thursday 15th September, there will be a Make your own Fantastic Mr. Fox Mask workshop in Lisdoonvarna Public Library.

All welcome, contact the branch for more details.
Ennistymon: (065) 7071245
Lisdoonvarna: (065) 7074029

Monday, 22 August 2016

Book launch: A Clarewoman’s Journey by Anne Loughnane

When Edinburgh-based author Anne Loughnane was a young social worker in West Clare during the early 1970s, she found an elderly woman and her grown-up son inhabiting a semi-derelict cottage. During their short acquaintance, she learned of the woman’s astonishing life, which led from late 19th century West Clare, where memories of the Famine and terror of the workhouse were still all too present, across the Atlantic to years of service among the prosperous of New York, and back to marriage with a respected Clare farmer in a dramatically transformed Ireland. Then came widowhood and a descent into poverty, still haunted by a debilitating “Famine mentality”.

The result is A Clarewoman’s Journey, part authorial memoir, part fictional reconstruction, which vividly evokes Eilin’s contrasting lives on both sides of the Atlantic, in a moving and illuminating account of a life that encompassed enormous personal, cultural and historical change.

Anne, whose previous book, In Pursuit of Kate Corbett, charted her great-grandmother’s extraordinary migration from Dublin to a ranch in Wyoming, will launch A Clarewoman’s Journey in De Valera Public Library, Ennis, on Tuesday 6th September at 7.00pm. All welcome.

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Traditional Music of Clare - Live Recordings, from the 1960s to the 1990s; over 100 sessions with over 60 hours of music, featuring the BR Taylor Collection, the John Joe Healy Collection and Carroll Mackenzie Music Collection

Traditional Music of Clare: Live Recordings

Shortly after Clare County Library launched the online Singers & Songs of County Clare from the Carroll Mackenzie Collection, we were approached by Barry Taylor who wondered if we would be interested in his collection of live recordings of Clare musicians from the 1960s and later. When we took a look at the collection we recognised its value immediately, and began work on a new music of Clare project based on live recordings; when Jim Carroll and Pat Mackenzie donated their song collection to us, they had also donated a substantial music collection, and the music collection of John Joe Healy which they had been caretaking.

The result is this new online collection of traditional Irish music, played by Clare musicians, recorded from the 1960s to the 1990s, totalling over 100 sessions with over 60 hours of music in total.

As well as the actual recorded sessions, names of tunes are included and the timing for each tune in each session is also included on each session’s webpage.

We are extremely grateful to Barry Taylor, John Joe Healy, Pat Mackenzie and Jim Carroll for donating their collections for this project. We are also grateful to Peter Laban and Pat Mackenzie for allowing us to use some photographs from their collections, and to Mary Custy and Paddy Comber for their help in identifying tunes.

Musicians featured in this project include Paddy Canny, Bobby Casey, Willie Clancy, Martin 'Junior' Crehan, Elizabeth (Mrs) Crotty, Michael Downes, Martin Hayes, P Joe Hayes, John Kelly, Patrick Kelly, Paddy Killourhy, Séamus MacMathuna, Peadar O'Loughlin, Seán Reid, Micho Russell, Seamus Ennis, Martin 'Junior' Crehan, Miko Doyle, Thady Casey, James Flynn, JC Talty, Angela Crehan, Ita Crehan, Paddy Fahy, Martin Talty, PJ Crotty, Christy Dixon, Martin O'Brien, Tommy McCarthy, Kevin Burke, John Joe Healy, Tommy McCarthy Jnr., Stevie O'Halloran, John Kelly, Jnr., Joe Ryan, Joe Rynne, Sean Keane, Kitty Hayes, Peter Laban, Paddy Galvin, JP Downes, JC Talty, Michael Falsey, Michael Sexton, and Ita Crehan.

Sessions were recorded in Doolin, Mullagh, Ennis, Feakle, Coore, Cree, Tulla, Miltown Malbay, Annageeragh, Spanish Point, Kiltannon, Lahinch, Crosses of Annagh and Knocknahilla in County Clare, and in Dublin and London.

This new project adds greatly to the traditional music services of Clare County Library; the library offers a wide range of music for lending throughout the county, and we have had a very strong traditional music collection (tapes & CDs) in our branch library in Miltown Malbay for many years.

In 2012, we launched the Music of Clare project on the library website, offering a sample of the rich musical culture of the county of Clare, featuring traditional tunes associated with County Clare, played by musicians who are from the county or who have lived in it for many years. The tunes were accompanied by transcriptions designed to help anyone who wishes to learn the basic notes of a tune.

In March 2015, we launched the online Singers & Songs of County Clare from the Carroll Mackenzie Collection, featuring over 400 songs from over 40 Clare singers, collected by Jim Carroll and Pat Mackenzie in London and west Clare over a period of 40 years, with transcriptions of song lyrics accompanying each recording, and various playlists for easy listening. The project was also enhanced by the addition of articles on singers and the song tradition in County Clare.

And now we are delighted to launch the Traditional Music of Clare: Live Recordings project, featuring live recordings of Irish traditional music sessions from the 1960s to the 1990s, from the archived tapes of three outstanding collections of Clare music: the BR Taylor Collection, the John Joe Healy Collection and the Carroll Mackenzie Collection.

Maureen Comber, Executive Librarian,
Anthony Edwards, Senior Executive Librarian,
Library ICT & Information Services Department,
Clare County Library,
June 2016

Image above shows Barry Taylor and Michael Downes, photo by Pat Mackenzie.

Friday, 17 June 2016

TG4’s HUP FEAKLE with Mary McNamara, Andrew McNamara & Sorcha Costello

Mary McNamara, Andrew McNamara, Sorcha Costello playing in Feakle, County Clare, on TG4's TV Series HUP, which filmed musicians within particular locations and traditions. Posted on Youtube on the 1st of April 2016 by Hup.

TG4’s HUP FEAKLE with Martin Hayes and Denis Cahill

Martin Hayes and Denis Cahill playing in Feakle, County Clare, on TG4's TV Series HUP, which filmed musicians within particular locations and traditions. Posted on Youtube on the 1st of April 2016 by Hup.

TG4’s HUP FEAKLE with Joe Fitzgerald

Joe Fitzferald playing in Feakle, County Clare, on TG4's TV Series HUP, which filmed musicians within particular locations and traditions. Posted on Youtube on the 1st of April 2016 by Hup.

Riches of Clare concert featuring Elaine Hogan, Padraig Rynne, Tara Breen, & Conor Crimmins, June 1, 2016

"Riches of Clare featuring Elaine Hogan, Padraig Rynne, Tara Breen, & Conor Crimmins - June 01, 2016. #1." Posted on Youtube on the 2nd of June 2016 by Niamhaines.