FUTURE LIMERICK: Climate Arts Festival promises to engage, entertain and spark debate

Chicken plays at Belltable for FUTURE LIMERICK, Climate Arts Festival 2024:

FUTURE LIMERICK: Climate Arts Festival is a multidisciplinary climate themed arts festival happening in the city from May 18 – 25. Tickets and more information from www.limetreebelltable.ie

Over a week this festival will explore the climate crisis through the arts using top-quality theatre, cinema, music and poetry. It promises to engage, entertain, spark debate and help people think outside the box around this urgent issue that can so often feel overwhelming.

The festival is curated by theatre company Sunday’s Child run by Eva O’Connor and Hildegard Ryan. 

Eva told Limerick Post this week, “We had this idea that it would be really exciting to see how we can use the arts to tackle the climate crisis at a time when people are maybe bombarded by statistics and hopelessness and overwhelmed by everything that you hear in the news that an artist’s perspective on climate chaos can actually give you an outside the box way of looking at it.”

The festival will feature multi-award winning play Chicken by Sunday’s Child, outdoor perambulating children’s play Snail’s Tale in the People’s Park, multicultural musical experience collective Music and Myth Busting, a panel discussion on fast fashion with PJ Kirby from the I’m Grand Mam podcast, a screening of BIFA nominated film The End We Start From starring Jodie Comer, playwriting workshop with Gavin Kostick from Fishamble, and a work-in-progress performance of new play The Good People by Limerick playwright Niall Carmody. 

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Family Fun Day is a free one-day event happening at The People’s Park from 12 noon-5pm. A big hit last time around, you are invited along for games, face painting, stilt walking, drumming workshops, a clothes swap and much more to celebrate the opening of Future Limerick Climate Arts Festival 

Chicken by Sunday’s Child plays at Belltable Cafe (limited numbers) from May 22-24. 

This play won the Filipa Bragança award for best Female identifying solo performer at the Edinburgh Fringe 2023 and has been described as very funny and a kind of absurdest jam that also has a message about how birds are farmed and processed.

“You leave the theatre thinking a little bit differently about chickens.” says Eva.

The premise of Chicken – Don Murphy is a one of his generation’s greatest actors. He also happens to be a chicken. A Kerry cock to be precise. 

Across one fateful night, the feathered Oscar winner shares his star-studded story.

Chicken will be performed by Eva O’Connell in Belltable Cafe, to a capacity of 50.

Eva adds, “It’s a very cool theatrical experience, for anyone who comes because we have limited capacity, it is basically an audience with the chicken, all the audience are in this egg shape around the chicken. So it’s very close and personal.”

For her last play called Mustard, Eva also altered her appearance by coating herself in mustard and now she is dressed as a chicken for this piece which is getting its Irish premier at the festival.

“It is a really joyful thing to do and it is one of the perks of the job.

“But Chicken is also really physically demanding. Probably the most physically demanding job I’ve ever done. Because you’re in this huge, elaborate chicken costume. 

“I basically spend the entire hour pecking my way through the audience. So it really feels like you’ve run a half marathon when you come off stage.”