Wednesday 28 September 2016

The pleasure list: Free Bard in the park, but it's a tale with a real twist

Published 03/08/2015 | 02:30

Shrew: Aoibheann McCann is Petruccio, with James Jaggs as Katherina
Shrew: Aoibheann McCann is Petruccio, with James Jaggs as Katherina
A piece by milliner Isobel Marinot-Wood

"If I be waspish, best beware my sting," so says Katherina to Petruchio in Taming of the Shrew, just one of many smart and sassy lines delivered in the story of Bianca, the most sought-after girl in town, whose father has vowed that she shan't marry until her shrewish older sister, Katherina, is safely off his hands.

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The play is performed less often than Shakespeare's other comedies, perhaps because the message of 'taming' women is unpopular with modern audiences. To get round the problem, and add a whole lot of intrigue, the inventive Fortune's Fool Productions (who previously brought us A (brief) Midsummer Night's Dream) have reversed the gender of all the lovers, so that Aoibheann McCann is Petruccio, with James Jaggs as Katherina, Andy Gallagher as Bianca and Caoimhe Mulcahy as Tranio, in (Not a Traditional) Taming of the Shrew that challenges preconceived ideas about gender politics and power structures. The results are likely to be both startling, and funny. The production runs from August 6-16, starting either at 3pm or 7pm, in the Iveagh Gardens and is free.

www.fortunesfoolproductions.ie

Talk to the elephants at their first birthday party

The elephants at Dublin Zoo, like the royalty they are, are getting more than just one birthday to mark the end of their first year. On Saturday August 22 and Sunday August 23, from 11am to 5pm, the Zoo and The Natural Confectionery Company will host a triple first-birthday celebration for Asian elephant calves Kavi, Ashoka and Samiya.

On these days, the Kaziranga Forest Trail will be transformed into an exuberant birthday bash for the celebrations, with music, face-painting, fun and games and a whole host of fun-filled family activities, to mark the joy these new additions to the herd have brought to visitors. The elephant care team will be on hand throughout the weekend for extra "Elephant Encounter" keeper talks and to answer questions on the Zoo's thriving herd of Asian Elephants.

www.dublinzoo.ie

Mad for hats and headpieces

Today may be the last day of the Galway races, but the summer still holds plenty of opportunities to wear one of the fabulous hats or head pieces created by milliner Isobel Marinot-Wood. With a background in jewellery and goldsmithing, Isobel began creating headpieces as a hobby first, then gradually transformed into a business. Each piece is unique and uses prime materials and techniques such as hand-stitching, blocking and dying, with a high-quality tailored finish. Felt is a big thing for Isobel, which lends an elegant, slightly vintage feel to what she does - much of her inspiration comes from the very feminine styles of the 1920s to 1950s. She also uses hat pins to place many of the detailed elements, such as feathers, bows, jewels and tweed buttons, giving the wearer the versatility to change or reinvent their hat themselves by simply altering the position of the trim. For big occasions, intimate occasions, and none at all, Isobel's hats add distinction and sophistication.

www.marinotmillinery

To the waters and the wild, the bounty of nature's larder

We all know the simple, homely joys of picking wild mushrooms, making elderberry cordial and sloe gin, wild garlic pesto and so on, but how to be sure you're not just picking a handful of weeds?

Worse again, something poisonous that is going to make you violently ill? Not to mention all the less-obvious but equally delicious things we miss?

The best way to get it right, is to take instruction from the experts.

Macreddin Village at Brook Lodge in Wicklow are running one-day masterclasses in foraging and wild food, on August 18 and September 15, where chefs from The Strawberry Tree Restaurant and Evan Doyle, co-author of the best-selling Wild Food, will tackle identification, gathering, cooking and preserving, as well as leading a hands-on expedition to the lanes, woods and fields around the village, and serving a delicious lunch that reflects the availability of seasonal wild food around Macreddin.

Sunday Indo Living

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