Today with Sean O'Rourke

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    Today With Sean O Rourke Monday 21 April 2014

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    Today with Sean O'Rourke

    The mid-morning current affairs magazine with the stories of the day, sharp analysis, sports coverage, in-depth features and consumer interest.

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    Aosdána

    In 1981 Taoiseach Charles Haughey set up Aosdána to recognise artists that have made an outstanding contribution to the arts in Ireland and to assist them in devoting their energies to their art. However, funded by the taxpayer to the tune of €2.7m a year, it has come under criticism for being out of date and in need of reform.

    So what exactly does Aosdána do, should it be reformed and if so what should it be replace with? 

    Ian Kilroy, a writer, journalist and former Arts Editor of the Irish Examiner and author Mary O'Donnell, a member of Aosdána, are in studio.

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    INTO Conference

    Ahead of the INTO Conference in Kilkenny, Valerie Cox gets some teachers' views.

    Also Mary Hanafin, former Minister for Education, is in studio to talk to Seán about the many conferences she attended both as a Minister and teacher.

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    Blood, Sweat and Gears

    Over five days from May 12 to May 16, a group of 20 people will do a 1,000-kilometre charity cycle around Ireland.

    However, instead of asking people to donate cash they are asking people to donate a unit of blood... Three people involved for a personal reason tell Seán their story.

    Stephen Roe's son Alex was 21 when he died from leukaemia.

    RTE’s Paschal Sheehy asked to get involved with the cycle when he heard about it. Paschal has his own experience of seeing the positive effects of blood transfusions on both his parents when they had cancer

    Lorraine Wharton is A-negative. When she got pregnant doctors discovered her antibodies were attacking her baby Jack’s red blood cells because he is O-Positive. On her second baby, the same thing happened again but the attack was more severe – the antibodies get stronger. Her second child Kyle had to get an in utero blood transfusion or he would have died.

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    Battle of Clontarf and Brian Ború

    Celebrations to mark the 1,000th anniversary of the Battle Of Clontarf are continuing this week.The Battle of Clontarf and the legend of Brian Boru is one of the best-known stories in Irish history. Dr Conor Mulvagh, lecturer in Irish History at UCD, and Michael Rooney, composer of The Boróimhe Suite, a celebration of the life of Brian Ború, are both in studio

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    Coalition Tensions

    Relations between the two coalition parties are at a new low, following disagreements last week over water charges.

    More generally, and within both parties, there is a sense of drift and a deepening awareness of a need to regain the political momentum. 

    Neither party – but Labour in particular - is looking forward to the local and European elections, now only five weeks away.

    Pat Leahy, political editor of the Sunday Business Post, talks to Seán.

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    Bank Guarantee Night

    More light has been shed on the discussions which led up to the Government's guarantee of bank deposits in September 2008, thanks to the publication of the first-hand accounts of crucial meetings by four top Irish bank executives and one independent economist. Tom Lyons, Senior Business Correspondent with the Irish Times joined Seán in studio to discuss.

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    Music Played on the Show

    • Title: Boroimhe Suite, Movement 3
      Composer: Michael Rooney
      Performer(s): Michael Rooney
      Performer(s): Michael Rooney
      Duration: 1:52
    • Title: Boroimhe Suite, Movement 4
      Composer: Michael Rooney
      Performer(s): Michael Rooney
      Performer(s): Michael Rooney
      Duration: 2:36

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