Attendances at the 13th Annual Terryglass Arts Festival were significantly higher than previous years with many of the night events sold out well in advance.
The festival which concluded on Sunday featured multi- platinum award winning singer Tommy Fleming as the star attraction on Friday night and comedian Aindrias de Staic who entertained the crowds on Wednesday night. The festival was officially launched on Wednesday 17th August by Alan Kelly TD, Minister for Public Transport and Commuter Affairs. As part of the opening event a breathtaking special performance by local superstars of Irish Dance, Bernadette Flynn and Damien O’Kane was presented by the festival.
Other festival highlights included street walkabouts and two man shows from Belfast based Streetwise Performance Ltd, and a highly entertaining comical performance from Liz Ryan and Istvan Barnacz of Drawing Room Opera Company.
Local talent was the star attraction on Thursday 18th August with “Nite-ro-gen” an evening showcasing the best of young local bands mc’d by Today fm’s Bob Conway, featuring young bands, Autopilot from Thurles; Beard of Zeus from Terryglass and Raffiki from Nenagh. There was a treat for foodies on the same evening ( Thursday 18th) when well known artisan food promoter Peter Ward hosted ‘The Art of Food and Wine’ to a captivated capacity audience in the Derg Inn at 6pm featuring tastings of artisan cheeses and accompanying wines.
Visual Harmonies – an exhibition of visual art by four Tipperary based women painters, Josephine Geaney, Judy Hamilton, Joyce Soden and Margaret O’ Brien provided a visual oasis at the centre of festival activity for visual art enthusiasts. Gerardine Wisdom’s rush work sculptures, which were scattered throughout the village and quayside attracted much attention from visitors and locals alike.
A hit with all ages was the Family Fun Day with craft demonstrations and street theatre which entertained adults and children. Music in the Glen presented ‘Gruffalo and Friends’ an interactive live music show based on the classic story of the cunning mouse and the scariest beast in the forest, the Gruffalo. The Sunflower Show from Little Bigtop Theatre Company amused young and pre- school children.
Speaking at the opening of the Festival on Wednesday night, Mayor of North Tipperary Cllr. Micheal Lowry, paid tribute to the festival organising committee headed by Valerie Cotter for programming and sourcing funding for such a diverse festival. “The current festival committee and all of those who have been involved over the years have developed a unique “Creative Space” here in Terryglass, and North Tipperary County Council is proud to have been amongst the festivals supporters since the beginning of the festival in 1999,” he said.
Festival sponsors were thanked by the Chairperson of Terryglass Arts Festival, Valerie Cotter who also paid tribute to the work of the many volunteers and supporters of the festival for their dedication and continued support.