Writers gather for Limerick Literary Festival

Internationally acclaimed writers Louis de Bernières, Tim Pat Coogan, Claire Keegan, Judi Curtin, Kevin Myers and Donal Ryan are included in an impressive line-up of participants in this year’s Limerick Literary Festival which will be officially launched tomorrow (Friday, 26 February 2016) and will continue through Sunday.

The Festival, formerly known as The Kate O’Brien Weekend, has been held annually since 1984 in honour of the life and works of the Limerick-born novelist and playwright Kate O’Brien.

This year’s festival, the theme of which is ‘Rebellion’ in keeping with the Centenary year of the Easter Rising, features author visits, readings, lectures and panel discussions at The Belltable, Limerick City Gallery of Art, the City Library (The Granary) and The Lime Tree Theatre in Limerick City.

The Festival once again features the presentation of the annual Kate O’Brien Award to the best novel or short story collection by a debut Irish female writer.

The Festival programme features Louis de Bernières, author of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin; Donal Ryan, writer and Booker Prize nominee; Claire Keegan, award-winning short story writer; Tim Pat Coogan, Ireland’s best known historical writer; Judi Curtin, the bestselling author of 22 books for children and adults; and Kevin Myers, journalist and broadcaster.

Other contributors to the three-day festival include Niall Mc Monagle, poet and Editor of ‘Poetry Now’; Dr. Tom Clonan, lecturer in DIT’s School of Media and author of Blood, Sweat and Tears; Catriona Lally, Novelist; Theo Dorgan, poet, novelist and broadcaster; Claudia Boyle, internationally renowned soprano; Sara Baume, short fiction writer and essayist; Thomas Lynch, poet, writer and winner of The American Book Award; Mike MacDomhnaill, poet and short story writer; and Pauline Bewick, one of Ireland’s most acclaimed artists.

The Festival will officially be launched by memoirist and journalist Kevin Myers tomorrow (Friday) at 6.00 pm in Limerick City Gallery of Art, Pery Square. It will be followed by the ‘As Music and Splendour’ recital, which this year will feature internationally renowned soprano Claudia Boyle, accompanied by pianist Mairéad Hurley.

The official festival opening will be preceded this evening (Thursday) at 8p.m. with Kaleidoscope Night Concert in the Belltable, 69 O’Connell Street.  Earlier on Friday, novelist Judi Curtin and short story author Mike Mac Domhnaill will host a free reading in association with the City Library at The Granary, Limerick.

On Saturday, Limerick City Gallery of Art will host eminent poet, author and undertaker Thomas Lynch, acclaimed short story writer Claire Keegan, esteemed historian and journalist Tim Pat Coogan, internationally celebrated author Louis de Bernieres, prize winning poet and travel writer Theo Dorgan and debut novelist Caitriona Lally.

The Lime Tree Theatre will host journalist and novelist Tom Clonan on Sunday morning before a special event entitled Desert Island Books where well known Limerick author Donal Ryan and accomplished new Irish writer Sara Baume will reveal their choice of books including “The book I would never lend”. And for the finale, the illustrious Pauline Bewick will be in conversation with the popular critic and Editor Niall MacMonagle.

The Limerick Literary Festival is organised by the Kate O’Brien Committee and sponsored by The Arts Council, Limerick City and County Council, No. 1 Pery Square, O’Mahony’s Booksellers, Lawless Flowers, Country Choice, PriceWaterhouseCoopers and Leahy & Partners Solicitors, Fine’s Jewellers, Kleiser Pianos, David Punch & Co. Solicitors.

For a full listing of all events and booking details visit www.limerickliteraryfestival.com.

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