Age & Opportunity’s Bealtaine Festival, in partnership with Axis Ballymun, is delighted to announce The Windy Lady by Pom Boyd, as the Bealtaine Festival Touring Production for 2020. The tour will travel nationwide for the month of May, as part of the 25th anniversary celebrations for Bealtaine.
Poor oul pigs get a very hard time don’t they? Some of them have been in films haven’t they?
They’re not in with the in-crowd isn’t that the problem?
I’m not in-with the in crowd, I only know my neighbour and Elaine in the chemist.
That’s not going to get me very far is it?
Audiences have been falling in love with The Windy Lady for years. Now she’s here with her own show where she invites us to share the contents of her mind, her shopping bag and her biscuit tin. Original and very funny, this show will cheer you up and leave you feeling better about life. You’re not in with the ‘in-crowd’? In The Windy Lady’s world, that’s the in-nest place to be. Pom Boyd’s The Windy Lady is a subversively witty and charming celebration of animals, womanhood and ordinary life.
About the artist
Pom Boyd is one of Ireland’s leading artists who, through her craft animates the glorious mundane. Her work offers a creative and innovative perspective on many familiar moments in everyday life.
Bealtaine Festival Internships – Deadline Extended
DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS EXTENDED TO Friday 29th November
We are looking for two interns to be part of our 2020 Bealtaine Festival Team. The interns will play an important role in supporting the festival as it celebrates its 25th year.
The Bealtaine Festival provides unique opportunities for interns to be involved in a successful collaborative festival and have an opportunity to:
Utilise your skills as well as learn and develop new skills.
Interact and network with a wide variety of people.
Travel to and attend events across Dublin and surrounding counties.
Learn about issues concerning older people.
The following internship roles are available:
Social Media Internship
Dawn Chorus Internship
For more info on what’s involve and how to apply read on….
Social Media Intern
This role will involve supporting the festival administration and helping to implement the marketing and social media campaign drawn up by the Festival team. It will provide an exciting opportunity to get first hand experience of promoting and marketing the festival, with support and mentoring from the team.
Further details on the role and how to apply can be found here:
The Dawn Chorus is a nationwide choral event in which older people come together with a choir in their locality and sing at Dawn in a scenic area, ideally beside water and always outdoors. In 2018, the Dusk chorus was initiated, where choirs can choose to sing by sunset. Age & Opportunity’s Bealtaine Festival coordinates the Dawn & Dusk Chorus nationally and works in partnership with the Sing Ireland and Active Retirement Ireland.
Further details on the role and how to apply can be found here:
Irish Theatre Institute (ITI)’s prime in partnership with Age & Opportunity offers actors aged 50 years + opportunities to engage in professional development programmes to build their skills, develop their ideas and grow their networks towards a continued successful career.
For prime 2019, ITI calls for Expressions of Interest from professional actors/theatre makers who are interested in pitching their new project or show an excerpt of existing work to an audience of invited artistic directors, programmers, agents, casting directors and funding organisations to ignite conversations and encourage discussion around the future presentation of new work.
prime Platform, now in its second year, will take place in Bewley’s Café Theatre during the week commencing 18th November.
For full details on the call, submission and the application process please see the Word Documents below:
Age & Opportunity is pleased to announce the six artists and care settings who will participate in their 2019 Artist(s) in Residence in a Care Settinginitiative. 2019 marks the third year of this project which aims to improve access to rich arts experiences for older people in care settings, many of whom are living with Dementia.
Research shows that people who engage with the arts benefit from a significant boost to their self-esteem and overall quality of life and that there is tremendous potential for participatory art to improve the quality of life for older people in general, as well as those older people who are most excluded including those with dementia . However, older people are not targeted as beneficiaries as much as they should be. As life expectancy improves so does the incidence of dementia. Presently there are over 55,000 people in Ireland living with the disease and another half a million people (mainly family members) who are directly affected by it.
These six residencies will bring the benefits of arts participation to up to 250 older people who either live in or visit care facilities and will also positively impact on over 500 people, when we include all those involved – residents, staff, families, artists, and the wider community.
Printmaker Aoife Barrett will invite residents at Raheen Community Hospital to participate in a series of conversations, bookmaking and printmaking activities to promote creativity, storytelling and the exchange of knowledge.
Visual artist John Conway aims to engage the service users of the Naas Day Care Centre over a cup of tea and simple art exercises. In doing so Conway aims to draw out the stories of their life experiences and document them for posterity as part of their project.
Photographer Brian Cooney aims to draw on the existing photography of the residents of St John’s Community Hospital in Sligo to help weave their personal stories. He will also make a new body of work that will be his personal response to his time in the care facility.
Based in the Clonskeagh Community Hospital in Dublin multimedia artist Cliona Ni Laoi will use projections to create immersive visual collages using light and sound. In turn this art project will feed into Cliona’s research about the therapeutic benefits of audiovisual installations in dementia care setting.
Multimedia artist Andy Parsons will be based in the Killybegs Community Hospital. Andy’s project will take as its starting point the wealth of craft skills of the people of Donegal. His project aims to record the hands of these people, capturing the ingenuity, resourcefulness and creativity of our older generation.
Using the mid-century buildings of Castleisland as a starting point visual artist Ciara Rodgers will engage the attendees of Castleisland Day Care Centre in a conversation about the history of the buildings in their area for a project in charcoal drawing.
Through funding provided by the Creative Ireland Programme’s National Creativity Fund, HSE National Lottery Funding (CHO areas 4 & 7), and the Arts Council, we have developed this initiative which aims to make arts intrinsic to life-in-care settings for older people, particularly those who live outside major urban areas.
Creativity and cultural participation are key contributors to wellbeing in older age. This project seeks to increase the awareness among policy makers, health and social care providers and the general public (including older people themselves) of the potential of participatory art to influence on the quality of life of older people in residential care, with positive impacts on health, psychological well-being and autonomy.
The residency initiative, creates an opportunity for the staff and older people living in or attending publicly-funded care settings to engage creatively with an artist in a nurturing and inclusive environment. It showcases the value of creative activity to the staff and broadens the base of skilled artists working in the area of arts and health.
Josepha Madigan: Minister of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
I am delighted that Creative Ireland through its National Creativity Fund can support an important project like this which will actively improve the lives of some of our communities most vulnerable people.
Commenting on the residency programme, Tara Byrne, Arts Programme Manager with Age & Opportunity said:
Although access to the arts and creativity underpin this residency initiative, we know that the arts has a profoundly beneficial influence on our general quality of life and psychological well-being. The person-centred characteristics of the arts in particular, can take on a critical role in enhancing our sense of identity as we grow older, and possibly experience feelings of marginalization or invisibility arising from our age, health or social status.
Age & Opportunity gratefully acknowledges the support of our Arts programme funders, the Arts Council, the Creative Ireland Programme’s National Creativity Fund, and the HSE.
The artist residency initiative is also supported by the Waterford Healing Arts Trust (WHAT), Creative Life, Mercer’s Institute for Successful Ageing (MISA) and the Dementia Services Information and Development Centre (DSIDC) both based in MISA, St. James’s Hospital. These partner organisations will offer their expert perspective on the artist residency steering group and provide mentoring and support during the programme.
First Group of Kerry Graduates from Course Designed to Enrich Lives of Older People Through Creativity
Creative Exchanges is a QQI accredited course for anyone leading creative activities with older people in care settings, and for those interested in working with older people
For the first time community volunteers also participated in the course
Twenty new activities coordinators today graduate from a training programme called Creative Exchanges. The Kerry-based participants took part in the training course which was organised by Age & Opportunity and commissioned by Cork Kerry Community Healthcare.
Creative Exchanges is a QQI accredited course for anyone leading creative activities with older people in care settings, and for those interested in working with older people. Participants develop the skills and confidence needed to plan and facilitate arts activities for older people in either residential or day care settings.
This is the first time that the training was offered in Kerry and the first time that community volunteers took part as well as those employed in care settings, helping us to enrich the lives of more older people through creative practice. This was made possible through funding from the Department of Health and Pobal and the HSE, as part of Kerry’s involvement in the Healthy Ireland plan.
During the programme, the graduates participated in practical workshops with artists working in care settings through music, dance, the visual arts or drama. Forty people completed the training, and the group included care workers, community volunteers, HSE staff and those interested in working with older people in care settings and community groups. The award is a QQI component award at Level 6 on the National Framework of Qualifications.
Speaking at the presentation of Certificates in Manor West Hotel, Tralee, Ciarán McKinney, Age & Opportunity commented:
It is so important that those organising activities for older people are skilled and confident in being able to deliver interesting, varied, person-centred activities. These activities can have a direct impact on the quality of life of an older person in care, and in the community. We are delighted that through this collaborative partnership with Cork Kerry Community Healthcare, we now have a network of skilled coordinators in Kerry and that through the involvement of community volunteers we are now reaching new communities. This collaboration with Cork Kerry Community Healthcare is a wonderful example of how partnerships among the public and voluntary sectors can make a vital difference to supporting older people’s lives and we hope this will lead to further collaboration in the region.
This initiative will bring a whole new level of creativity into the lives of people in nursing homes and community groups in Kerry by providing the learning and development in relation to guiding creative activities in care settings. Mixing theory, regulations and practical creative work, participants will be able to bring their learning back to their own nursing home or community group, so that people can feel the benefits straight away.
Mairéad Hanlon, one of today’s graduates said:
Creative Exchanges enlightened me in relation to the stigma attached to ageing – just because you reach a certain age doesn’t mean you are written off. I think all health care workers – doctors and nurses as well as care assistants – should do a course like this.
Speaking at the graduation Hilary Scanlan, Community Work Manager Cork Kerry Healthcare, HSE commented:
The feedback from participants has been very positive, they have gained the skills and knowledge to enable them to deliver varied, innovative and creative programmes in their care settings and communities. Through this network of skilled coordinators in Kerry, we hope to support varied and stimulating programmes for older people’s groups and encourage active engagement in the community, promoting the vision of Healthy Ireland in the county.
Creative Exchanges was developed in 2013 by Age & Opportunity, the national organisation that inspires people aged 50+ to live a life in which they are more active, more visible, more creative and more connected. The need for such a programme was borne out of research which showed significant benefits for older people in care who have access to the arts.
The next course is scheduled to take place in the Autumn, in IMMA. For more details and information on how to apply click here.
After a successful call out for 2019, Age & Opportunity once again invites applications from performing artists and theatre producers for an award for work which will tour, during May 2020, as part of the Bealtaine Festival.
Age & Opportunity will provide a platform (through the Bealtaine Festival) and additional financial support to a tour which chimes with the mission and aims of the organisation, and the Bealtaine Festival, prioritising work which fulfils the assessment criteria and is radical, challenging, humorous or irreverent.
Full details are available in the guidelines document below. Deadline extended to Thursday 26th September 2019.
Age & Opportunity invites applications from choirs to fill the role of Bealtaine Festival Flagship Choir for the Dawn and Dusk Chorus events, in 2020, Bealtaine’s 25th anniversary year. Following the success of the inaugural flagship choir in 2019, Age & Opportunity once again invites choirs to apply to be the Bealtaine Festival choir for 2020.
For these flagship events the Bealtaine Festival wishes to showcase a choir that celebrates the Bealtaine spirit in some way – it may be that they are intergenerational or that they are championing creativity as we age or that they have been staging their own Dawn Chorus events for the past number of years.
For full details, download the application guidelines and application form below. Deadline extended to Thursday 26th September 2019.
Age & Opportunity has created an opportunity for care settings and older people living in or attending those settings to engage creatively with an artist over the course of a number of months. Age & Opportunity also wishes to offer an opportunity for an artist to develop their specific skills in relation to working in arts and health settings. In 2019, six artist residencies of this kind will be offered. The application process is two-part: care settings have applied and been selected for this unique opportunity based on an open competition and artists are now invited to apply for a residency in one of these specific care settings.
Please read the guidelines below carefully before completing the application form.
PLEASE NOTE: THE DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS HAS BEEN EXTENDED TO FRIDAY 16th AUGUST 2019.
This initiative aims to make arts and creativity intrinsic to life-in-care settings for older people, particularly those who live outside major urban areas and in hard-to-reach places. Applications are invited from publicly funded and not for profit care settings including day care, residential care and hospice care.
Please note that the deadline for CARE SETTINGS to apply for our Artist in Residence initiative is 28th June 2019.
Funding provided by the Creative Ireland Programme’s National Creativity Fund, HSE National Lottery Funding (CHO areas 4 & 7), and the Arts Council.
St. Patrick’s Festival and the Bealtaine Festival are delighted to announce its first ever joint event centring around a number of fun choral pop ups for all to get involved with this weekend.
On Saturday, take to the streets for Sing Out Loud, an inclusive, celebratory programme in partnership with Tesco finest*, with a choral trail featuring older persons and inter-generational choirs including The Forget Me Nots and Forever Young choirs, performing at Dublin’s most iconic landmarks sharing their stories though song. Click here for full details of the choirs performing.
Age & Opportunity’s Bealtaine Festival has been celebrating choral singing through its Dawn Chorus events since 2009, where choirs around the country are invited to sing outdoors, at a scenic location, on a morning in May. In 2019, for the first time, a Bealtaine Festival Choir will represent the festival at a number of events. This choir was selected by Age & Opportunity and Sing Ireland and embodies the spirit of the Bealtaine Festival and will preview their Dawn Chorus performance along with other favourites at this very special national St. Patrick’s Festival event.
Join the choral trail on Saturday for a fun pop up sing-a-long – bring the kids, the grandkids and Sing Out Loud with us! Or come along to the national Festival Parade on Sunday to get a flavour of the Dawn Chorus which promises to be an uplifting and joyful performance by the Bealtaine Festival Choir.
The Bealtaine Festival Dawn Chorus will take place in Co. Carlow, by the River Barrow in the town park on Sunday 5th of May at 6am – if you are in the area, come and join us to herald the day with song!