YARN Storytelling Festival Bray returns for the 10th Year

Mermaid Arts Centre is delighted to bring YARN Storytelling Festival Bray for the tenth year from 9 – 17 November 2019. YARN is a community-based non-profit making festival that strives to bring the art-form of storytelling to as many people of all ages in the community as possible.

This year’s programme is brimming with top storytellers and performers, both from Ireland and abroad. The festival kicks off on Saturday 9 November with an Irish language storytelling event upstairs in the Town Hall with storyteller Cillian Brennan from Cork entitled “Ó Bhotháin go Caisleáin”. Admission is free and this event is suitable for kids aged 5+. Cillian then moves up to the farm market in Killruddery for “Shortening the Road” – some tales in English before the fire in The Shoot Room at 2 pm. Admission is once again free of charge and the event is suitable for ages 5+.

On Saturday afternoon storyteller Philip Byrne is holding a fun participatory workshop in aid of Greystones Cancer Support in The Martello and on Saturday evening at 8 pm join storyteller Helena Byrne upstairs in the Town Hall for “Supernatural Ireland” – not for the faint-hearted! Tickets for this event are on sale now and cost €12/10. This event is for adults (16+).

On Sunday 10 November join us in the People’s Park at noon for Poetry in the Park with a tale or two by Philip Byrne. Admission free and all ages welcome. On Sunday afternoon grab your seat and hang on tight, Niall de Búrca is coming to Mermaid Arts Centre with his family show “World Tales”. Tickets cost €5 and are selling fast so don’t delay!

YARN is delighted to welcome Moth and Butterfly from Galway on Sunday 10 November at 7 pm. Described as ‘Galway’s most magical arts night’, Moth and Butterfly is a storytelling event with huge heart. The tellers combine short true personal stories, fiction/folk tales with improvised stories, as well as inviting audience tellers to participate. Each night of stories has a theme, and for YARN that theme is ‘The Connection’.  Tellers are Órla McGovern, Catherine Brophy and Niceol Blue wth a fourth teller to be confirmed. For more information see Mermaid’s website.

Mermaid is thrilled this year to welcome one of Iceland’s top storytellers Hjörleifur Stefánsson. Hjörleifur has collected and shared tales for years, both with his kids, audiences and his sheep. Giants, trolls, hidden people and ghosts are his companions as well as Icelanders of the past and their traditions of song and stories. Hjörleifur will be busy in schools and libraries all week but the public will have a chance to hear his tales in Frank Duff’s Lounge on Wednesday 13th November at 8 pm (18+) and he will perform for kids in both Killruddery and Fassaroe Community Centre on Saturday 16th November.

The Maritime History of Bray will be presented in Mermaid on Tuesday 12th November by Brian White of Bray Cualann Historical Society. Who knew that bathing goggles were invented in Bray? Come along to hear more!

Two schools show take place during YARN week also – primary schools have the great opportunity to come and see Susie and the Story Shredder, presented by Bombinate Theatre and secondary pupils have the unique chance to join Niall de Búrca for Sophies’ Tale – set in World War 2.

Thursday 14 November the much loved Candlelit Tales will be joined by Aindreas de Staic upstairs in The Harbour Bar at 8 pm performing “Setting Sail on a Voyage Tale”. This event is kindly sponsored by The Harbour Bar and the €5 payable on the door goes 100% to the RNLI Lifeboats in Dun Laoghaire in order to help purchase new equipment. Please come along and show your support.

Tony Doyle brings his show Weekend Warrior to Mermaid Arts Centre on Thursday 14th straight from the Dublin Fringe Festival. This powerful one man performance based on a young man’s attempts to give up drink and drugs is not to be missed. Niall de Búrca is back on stage on Friday 15 November with his “Hooley of Tales” which is for adults (16+). Tickets on sale now and cost €12/10.

We are delighted to welcome Liz Weir MBE to Bray on Saturday 19 November for a day-long workshop on telling stories for and with older people living with dementia. This is a really fantastic opportunity to learn from one of Ireland’s greatest experts in this field.

Kids will have mighty fun at Storytelling Yoga with Nicola Foxe in Mermaid on Saturday morning (16th November) and on Saturday evening join Colum Sands for his new show “Song Bridge”. Colum Sands has spent much of his life travelling the world, crossing borders and building bridges with the power of his songs and stories. The Speks wrap up YARN for us on Sunday 17 November at 2 pm. Tickets are almost sold out so don’t delay!

Storyteller and artist Paul Timoney is Mermaid’s Storyteller in Residence for 2019. Paul is working with secondary pupils in North Wicklow Educate Together. Join us in Mermaid’s Gallery during YARN to see the results of their work.

Full information can be found on Mermaid’s website at www.mermaidartscentre.ie or by calling the box office on 01-2724030.

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