23 September 2003
The Film: Ned Kelly
Ned Kelly is Australia's greatest folk hero. Born in 1855, he was a teenage bush worker but graduated to horse-stealing and bank robberies. He was subsequently executed, aged only 25. His story has continued to inspire artists and writers: author Peter Carey's 'True History of the Kelly Gang' won the 2001 Booker Prize, Sidney Nolan's iconic paintings of the Kellys are well known and there was the Mick Jagger 'Ned Kelly' movie in 1970. Now there's a new film version, based on Robert Drewe's book 'Our Sunshine' and adapted for the screen by John Michael McDonagh. It is directed by Gregor Jordan of 'Buffalo Soldiers' fame, and stars Heath Ledger, Orlando Bloom, Geoffrey Rush, Naomi Watts and Rachel Griffiths.

Karen Fricker, Tom Lawlor and Patsy McGarry discuss 'Ned Kelly'

The Play: Sharon's Grave
Following her director's award for 'Sive' in last season's ESB Irish Theatre Awards, Garry Hynes is back with a new Druid production of a John B Keane play. 'Sharon's Grave' was first performed in 1960 and tells of of Trassie Conlee and her fight to protect herself and her brother Neelus from their crazed cousin, Dinzee. The cast includes Catherine Walsh, Tom Hickey, Tom Vaughan Lawlor, Adam Fergus, Michael Fitzgerald, Frankie McCafferty and David Herlihy.

The Panel discusses the Druid production of 'Sharon's Grave'

The Exhibition: hidden
Paul Seawright was born in Belfast in 1965. An artist working in photography, he first came to international attention in the 1980s, during which he produced his 'Sectarian Murder' series, works that took a notably different approach to imagery from the Troubles. Since then, he has exhibited widely in Europe and America and in 1997 he was awarded the IMMA/Glen Dimplex Artist's Award. 'Paul Seawright: hidden' is the title of his new exhibition at the Irish Museum of Modern Art. For it, he was commissioned by the Imperial War Museum to travel to Afghanistan to investigate landscapes that had been contaminated with ordinance and land mines.

The Panel discusses 'Paul Seawright: hidden'

The Book: Lost Souls
The author Michael Collins was born in Limerick in 1964 and educated in Ireland and the US. A successful long-distance runner, he began to write whilst on a sports scholarship to Notre Dame University, Indiana. His first collection of stories, 'The Meat Eaters', was named Notable Book of the Year by The New York Times in 1993. His novels include 'The Life and Times of a Teaboy', 'The Keepers of Truth', nominated for the 2000 Booker Prize, and 2001's 'The Resurrectionists'. His new novel, 'Lost Souls', is a thriller set in the American midwest where a young child has been killed. The story is narrated by a very depressed local cop, Lawrence, whose marriage has ended badly and whose career looks like it might go the same way...

The Panel discusses Michael Collins' 'Lost Souls'

The Performance: 'Tom Crean - Antarctic Explorer'
The ESB Dublin Fringe Festival began yesterday and one of the highlights is 'Tom Crean - Antarctic Explorer', by actor and writer Aidan Dooley. It arrives from the New York International Fringe Festival, where it won the award for best solo performance. It tells the story of Kerryman Tom Crean, the intrepid explorer who served with Scott and Shackleton.

Watch the performance

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