We are delighted to announce the five artists and six care settings who will participate in the Care Hubs of Arts & Creative Excellence initiative 2020/2021, funded by Creative Ireland’s Creativity in Older Age Programme, with support from the Arts Council of Ireland. This initiative builds on learning and knowledge gathered from our previous residency initiatives which centred on thoughtful and bespoke arts experiences for older people in care around Ireland.
The key aim of the Care Hubs of Arts & Creative Excellence initiative is to generate arts and care skills and knowledge in six regions around Ireland. Artists’ residencies are at the core of the initiative and will take place from January to April 2021, bringing imaginative and engaging new arts experiences to the residents, staff and families of the care settings and providing a link between the residents and their local community. Bespoke training provided by our Creative Exchanges and Azure initiatives is also designed to inform the artists, regional arts workers and care settings.
These residencies will bring the benefits of arts participation to up to 125 older people who either live in or visit care facilities and 125-250 staff, families, artists and the wider community.
- Liz Clark will start her music project Homeplace with participants from Castleisland Day Care Centre, Kerry and Raheen Community Hospital, Clare, composing a song, connecting us to our homeplace and our relationship to it. At the end of this project, the participants will perform this song, engaging the local community choir/ local musicians to showcase the work to the wider community.
- Maud Hendricks and Bernie O’Reilly (Outlandish Theatre Platform) will explore with residents of two healthcare settings, John’s Community Hospital, Sligo and Killybegs Community Hospital, Donegal, a pivotal moment in the lives of the residents. Through an exploration of this moment, they will co-create an installation piece to share amongst family, friends, carers and the wider public.
- Philippa Donnellan and Olwyn Lyons, working with Clonskeagh Community Nursing Unit, Dublin and Naas Day Care Centre, Kildare, will be inviting everyone to take a step in a new direction and to share an idea or their own moves. People will have the chance to exercise, engage and artistically explore – and to celebrate their life and work in a series of specially choreographed performance events in story, song and dance.
All artists understand they may not be able to enter care settings fully or at all over the residency. The artists have all designed blended residencies that can be dynamic and respond to the needs of each setting, whilst still striving for meaningful engagement with residents. Interactions will be by online, phone and postal means as well as some possible in person visits, depending on the government guidelines at that time.
Commenting on the residency programme, Dr. Tara Byrne, Arts Programme Manager, Age & Opportunity said:
“When this series of residencies ends in May 2021, we hope to have embedded a culture of arts participation across the six care settings, reconnecting residents back to their community and, through the training provided to both staff of care settings and local cultural institutions, to have created a hub of arts and creative excellence in each region.
The impact of Covid-19 will be with us for some time, but we hope these residencies will be part of the process helping us to interpret, to heal and to creatively reconnect with each other as we emerge from the shadow of 2020.”
Funded by Creative Ireland’s Creativity in Older Age Programme, with support from the Arts Council of Ireland.
For more info on the fantastic artists involved:
Liz Clark is an Ireland-based singer, songwriter, performer, and musician.
Liz has recorded 5 full length studio albums of original songs. She has performed and collaborated throughout the US and Europe working solo engagements as well as collaboratively in a group and leading full bands. She has performed alongside the likes of Sarah Maclachlan, Emmylou Harris, The Counting Crows and others.
Over the past seven years she has been working extensively in the Arts and Health context in which she developed a collaborative approach to the songwriting process in healthcare settings across West Cork. As part of the Arts For Health Partnership Programme, she developed The Starling Song Project which preserves stories and heritage from older participants in the form of song. From this work, she developed The Starling Band, involving 3 other singers and instrumentalists to showcase this music in a wider context outside of the hospitals.
Liz is the leader of a community choir and 2 HSE choirs for the wellbeing of staff. She is the host of a new podcast, produced by Arts For Health, discussing ways of working, inspiration, pitfalls and challenges in the arts and health sector.
Maud Hendricks and Bernie O’Reilly, collaborative performance making artists and artists in residence at the Coombe Women and Infants University Hospital create experimental inter-media collaborative performances and projects as Outlandish Theatre Platform in Dublin 8, their primary Contact Zone, since 2010.
Outlandish Theatre Platform is committed to participatory modes of co-creation to reflect the lives and experiences of people in places. Bernie and Maud work to create conditions of exchange that develop new modes of making provocative performance projects, with both professional and community participants, whilst also building relationships with diverse new audiences.
Philippa Donnellan is an independent professional dance artist and choreographer based in Dublin. From 2006 to 2020 she was Director of CoisCéim BROADREACH – the participation and engagement programme of CoisCéim Dance Theatre, with whom she has led many projects with varying communities of age, place and location in Ireland. As part of BROADREACH, she has contributed to building an innovative programme of activities for people aged 50+. Most recently this included directing THE DOOR – an extended two year class and performance project commissioned by Age & Opportunity/Bealtaine Festival, and LOVE LETTERS a digital dance project, which culminated in a new dance film A LOVE LETTER TO LIFE screened as part of Bealtaine at Home, Autumn 2020. Following an award from Kildare County Council Arts & Well-being Services, Philippa is currently engaging in a new dance research project on themes and stories about work with communities in Kildare.
Olwyn Lyons is an independent choreographer, dance artist and community dance facilitator, who specialises in Contemporary and Urban Street Dance. She is a certified Dance for Parkinson’s teacher at Dance Ireland (Dance for PD® USA, English National Ballet, U.K.) and is qualified to lead Zumba.
Recent awards includes: Engagement with New Technologies Award 2021 in collaboration with Dance Artist Carla Fazio (Creative Ireland/South Dublin County Council), Cruinniú Na nOg 2020 (South Dublin County Council), Schools Cultural Award 2020 (South Dublin County Council).
Facilitation of selected community workshops and dance projects includes: International Dance Day (CoisCéim Dance Theatre Broadreach, The Ark, DCC Arts & Libraries Summer Arts Programme), Community Dance Artist in Residence Five Lamps Arts Festival 2020, EXIT 15 Intergenerational Community Dance Project, Ballyogan (CoisCéim Dance Theatre Broadreach, Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council), Cruinniú Na nOg 2019 (South Dublin County Council), Dancer in Residence Clonmel Junction Arts Festival 2018.
Facilitation of weekly community dance classes includes: Dance for Parkinson’s (Dance Ireland), Macushla Dance Club for dancers aged 50+ (Dance Ireland, Dublin City Council), Macushla South Dance Club for dancers aged 50+ (Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council).
Olwyn is Assistant Director of NOISE Moves Youth Dance Festival based at Civic Theatre and Rua Red,Tallaght (South Dublin County Council).