7 days + nights: 1st - 7th April 2011
FRIDAY, APRIL 1
Barretstown Inspirations, Olympia Theatre, Dublin 2
Everyone needs to be inspired and we always find the extraordinary children who visit Barretstown to be pretty darned inspirational, to put it mildly.
Well, to raise vital funds to ensure more of these impossibly brave chislers get to enjoy this camp set up by Paul Newman for children with life-threatening illnesses, a group of musicians are getting together tonight to pay homage to the musos that have proved inspirational to them. Stepping up into the spotlight will be Glen Hansard, Delorentos, O Emperor, The Stunning, Dirty Epics and many more. Ray D'Arcy will host the shindig and the night will also include a short retrospective of Newman's movie career. Prepare to be moved.
SATURDAY, APRIL 2
Sarah Millican, Vicar Street, Dublin 2
There's a lot to be said about comedian Sarah Millican's quirky cheekiness. Sounding like a Geordie Minnie Mouse, she reels you in with some smiley chatter, all sunshine and light, before perfectly timing her knuckle-duster punchline for a bruised and occasionally bloodied climax. Described as "affectionately waspish and incorrigibly rude", she is coming to town this month at the end of her international Chatterbox tour. Tonight's Dublin night is sold-out, but tickets are still available for tomorrow night's gig in Galway's Roisin Dubh at time of going to print. And, if you miss both of these, she will be back in October with her brand new Thoroughly Modern Millican show.
SUNDAY, APRIL 3
1st Alliance Francaise Photography Award, Alliance Francaise, Dublin 2
Alliance Francaise is in a red-bricked corner building that many of you will have stopped to admire, but never thought of crossing its threshold. Well, cross it you should, not least for the rather gorgeous café with its sun-filled bay windows overlooking Trinity College's cricket fields. And while you're enjoying a slice of gâteau or a bowl of consommé, take a look at an interesting new photographic exhibition featuring the work of the four finalists in the Alliance's new photographic award. The quartet of snappers are successful painter Joby Hickey, who diversified into photography in recent years and has developed his own most unique technique; French photographer Jean-Luc Morales, who has relocated to Ireland; Doreen Kennedy and Roseanne Lynch.
MONDAY, APRIL 4
Source Code, Limited Release
Duncan Jones follows his acclaimed 2009 film Moon with this slick and clever sci-fi thriller that keeps you engaged and guessing right until the end. Jake Gyllenhall wakes up on a busy suburban train that's hurtling towards downtown Chicago. The beautiful girl (Michelle Monaghan) sitting across from him seems to think she knows him, but he's really a US Air Force pilot called Colter Stevens who's been seconded to a revolutionary new government project called Source Code. A scientific breakthrough has allowed scientists to project agents into the bodies of the recently deceased: there's a bomb on the train and Colter has to find out who planted it. Source Code is full of twists and turns, and Jones handles both the storyline and the action sequences brilliantly.
TUESDAY, APRIL 5
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Gate Theatre
Expect sharp claws and sizzling sexuality as the steamy Southern tale unfolds in this new production at the Parnell Square theatrical institution opening tonight. Marking the centenary of the birth of Tennessee Williams with his juicy melodrama, the Gate have lined up a crackling cast including Fiona O'Shaughnessy as nervy Maggie 'the Cat', Richard Flood as her alcoholic husband Brick, and Owen Roe as brutal boor Big Daddy. With American director Mark Brokaw at the helm, expect a crucial level of authenticity. Big Daddy is, of course, the embodiment of the American Dream, and through his character Williams shows how American society has sacrificed all moral and ethical values at the altar of the most precious asset of all: money. Yup, we're all living this part of the story.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 6
Frida Kahlo & Diego Rivera, IMMA
There's nothing quite like seeing an iconic image up close. And it will be one of those goosebumps moments when you find yourself staring into the eyes (and at the eyebrow) of Frida Kahlo in one of her deservedly legendary self-portraits at the much anticipated exhibition opening in IMMA today. One of my own favourite Kahlo works is the one entitled Diego In My Thoughts, which shows Frida in full Tehuana costume with an image of her husband Diego Rivera stamped across her forehead. And, excitingly for me, this is one of the pieces included in the Dublin show, which features true masterpieces by both Kahlo and Rivera, supplemented by diaries, lithographs, drawings and photographs to give a more complete understanding of how these artists worked. A must-see if ever there was one.
THURSDAY, APRIL 7
Jessie J, The Academy, Dublin 1
Not so much an arriving pop star as a pick and mix of musical trends rolled into one gobby, karate-kicking package -- with Jessie J there's no telling what's coming next. Where break-out single Do It Like A Dude suggested a potty-mouthed Rihanna in a cage fight with Nicki Minaj, on follow-up album Who You Are the young Londoner refused to be pinned down. One minute Jessie -- strapped to the hype rocket since winning the start of year Sound Of poll -- was wading through 90s-style treacle-balladry, the next going all X-Tina on you. To be honest, at moments she is worryingly close to sounding like someone in the throes of an identity crisis. But, performing live, the package is delivered with such teeth-baring panache it's hard not to feel that you are in the presence of something special.
Day & Night