11 November 2008
The Guests

This week's guests are crime novelist Declan Hughes, columnist and art critic Medb Ruane and theatre critic Peter Crawley.

The Film: Alarm

Directed by Gerard Stembridge, Alarm is a new Irish thriller set for the most part on an fairly upmarket development where isolated people live - if that's the word - and commute back and forwards to Dublin where they work. The story focusses on Molly, played by Ruth Bradley, a young woman who has moved to one of these places in search of peace of mind - having lost her father to a violent crime in Dublin. Her dream home turns out be yet another nightmare as a series of unsettling events makes a fresh assault on her sanity.

The Play: The Dead School

Now on tour, Nomad and Livin Dred have joined forces with Pat McCabe for a new version of the stage adaptation of McCabe's novel The Dead School. Directed by Padraic McInytyre and starring among others Eamon Owens, who played Francie Brady in 'The Butcher Boy', this is the story of Raphael Bell, an old style national school teacher, and what happens when a new man arrives with a rather different approach to things. It is, according to McCabe, a clash between two Irish world views - modernism and traditionalism.

The Book: Bird in the Snow

This new novel from Michael Harding tells the story of Bridie Waters a old woman who is about to bury her only son. She stays up all night, looking back over her son's life and her own, and also remembers a flute player called Hughie Donoghue for whom she still has an unspoken affection. From the outside hers is an ordinary life coming to its end, but she alone knows about the drama, the passion and the love that was there and which still sustain her.

The Exhibition: In Praise of Shadows

Now on at Irish Museum of Modern Art in Kilmainham, In Praise of Shadows is an exhibition which focuses on shadows, shadow theatre and silhouettes and looks at how traditional forms of shadow play have influenced contemporary art. The exhibition brings together works by eight contemporary artists from seven different countries and two master filmmakers.

The Performance: Halfset

Halfset are a quartet from Dublin who use an unusual combination of electronics and live instruments - including vocals, drums/percussion, guitars, glockenspiel, harp, trumpet, mandola and an old analogue synth. Their debut album 'Dramanalog' was issued in 2005 and now they're back with that famously difficult second album, 'Another Way of Being There'. Tonight they play 'Salmon'.

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