Monday 24th February

The Quarry - Ben Halls

The Quarry is Ben Halls debut collection of short stories. It is set in a fictional London housing estate where the characters face challenges of addiction and deprivation. Declan Burke reviews.

New York Our Time - Vivienne Dick

Irish filmmaker and artist Vivienne Dick on New York Our Time a personal documentary that contrasts the concerns of present day with the bohemian wildness of ’70s New York.

RHA Exhibition - Folly and Diction

Artist Alan Phelan on his exhibition in the RHA, Folly and Diction. It brings the story of John Joly to life recreating the photographic process he invented.

New Music Dublin - Claire Chase & Nick Roth

New Music Dublin, celebrates contemporary music running from February 27 - March 1. Diatribe Records co-founder, Nick Roth and American flutist, Claire Chase are in studio.

Friday 21st February

Album reviews

New albums from Grimes, Miss Anthropocene, Ozzy Osbourne. Ordinary Man and Kid Kruel, Man Alive. Louise Bruton and Eamon Sweeney review.

Musician of the Year - Harper Laoise Kelly

Harper Laoise Kelly joins Arena ahead of receiving Musician of the Year title at the annual Gradam Ceoil TG4 awards.

Dublin International Film Festival - Street Leagues

Director Daniel Holmes and goalkeeper Philip Doyle talk to Seán. .Street Leagues follows Irish Homeless Street Leagues as they conquer homelessness and addiction through the power of sport on their way to the Homeless World Cup featuring Colin Farrell,

Thursday 20th February

Stiff Records - Dave Robinson

Dave Robinson, co-founder of the celebrated Stiff records label, home to the likes of Elvis Costello, the Pogues and The Damned talks to Seán Rocks. He will be back in Ireland next week where he will talk publicly about his extraordinary career.

Film reviews

The latest film releases are reviewed. Michael Winterbottom's satire Greed starring Steve Coogan, comedy Like a Boss with Salma Hayek and documentary Midnight Family set in Mexico City.

Wednesday 19th February

Looking For America

Where We Live festival, actress and playwright Janet Moran brings Looking For America to the stage – it's a true story documenting her partner Federico Julián Gonzales' past life. They join us in studio.

Studio 8 - Conor Guilfoyle Octet

The Conor Guilfoyle Octet and their studio 8 session before their performance at The Sofa Sessions in Kilkenny city.

Korean Culture - Rebecca Chiyoko King-O' Riain

The resounding success of the South Korean film Parasite at last week’s Oscar ceremony marked a watershed moment and the rising popularity of Korean culture.

An Unravelling - Elske Rahill

Elske Rahill on her novel An Unravelling. An 80-something great-grandmothe is the wealthy widow of a famous artist and highly involved in helping her granddaughters bring up their own kids.

Tuesday 18th February

No Escape - Arlene Hunt

No Escape is the eleventh and latest crime fiction novel from the prolific author Arlene Hunt. The story focuses on people trafficking and feuding crime families.

Kilmainham Gaol - Recycle, Repurpose, Reimagine

Recycle, Repurpose, Reimagine is a Kilmainham Gaol exhibition. The collection of objects shows the inventiveness of prisoners, recycling mundane materials into iconic objects. Kay Sheehy reports.

Mother Tongues Festival - Camilla Griehsel

The Mother Tongues Festival returns for its third year, spread over three days this weekend in Dublin. Singer Camilla Griehsel joins us ahead of her show Mamasongue.

Greed - Steve Coogan

Greed is the latest film from director Michael Winterbottom starring Steve Coogan as Sir Richard ‘Greedy’ McCreadie – fashion tycoon. Alan Corr spoke to Steve Coogan.

Monday 17th February

Pine - Book review

Set in a small village in the Scottish Highlands, Pine is the first novel from poet and editor Francine Toon. Siobhan Callaghan reviews.

TV preview - Hunters

Al Pacino’s new Amazon series co produced by Jordan Peele is about renegade Nazi hunters set in 1977. Mary McGill previews the black comic thriller.

Ute Lemper - National Concert Hall

German chanteuse Ute Lemper talks to Arena ahead of performing at the National Concert Hall on May 26.

Friday 14th February

Love Saves the Day and The Loft

DJ Kelly Anne Byrne chats to Seán about pioneering DJ and founder of New York City’s early club culture, David Mancuso in the 70s.

Album reviews

Nadine O'Regan and Cathal Funge the latest album releases from Justin Bierber, Green Day and Tame Impala.

Where we live event - Jenny Jennings

THISISPOPBABY have announced the second edition of their Where We Live event, which runs at Dublin's Project Arts Centre from 11-21 March. Jenny Jennings is the director of one of those shows – an Australian play called Shit.

Tribute to Monica Frawley

One of Ireland’s best known theatre designers, Monica Frawley, has died following a long illness. She was a deeply loved and respected member of the theatre community.

Thursday 13th February

Gabriela Montero - National Concert Hall

Venezuelan pianist, Gabriela Montero joins Seán in studio. This is ahead of performing with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra at the National Concert Hall.

Actress by Anne Enright review

Maev Kennedy reviews Anne Enright's seventh novel Actress.

Film reviews

The latest films releases including Jihad Jane and Emma. Cara O'Doherty and Paul Whittington review.

Wednesday 12th February

Project Arts Centre - Walls Talk

Walls Talk is a unique performance piece bringing together the spoken word, music, dance and jazz classics at the Project Arts Centre in February. The collaborators Breandán de Gallí of Éiriu dance company and singer, Gina Boreham join Seán in studio.

Studio 8 Session - Luan Parle

Luan Parle joined us in studio 8 to tell us about her new album while performing acoustic tracks from Never Say Goodbye. Luan has a string of live dates coming up around the country. Check out luanparle.com for tour dates.

Abbey Theatre - The Fall of the Second Republic

The Fall of the Second Republic is a new comedy, a fast-moving cat and mouse game, from Corn Exchange in a co-production with the Abbey Theatre. Director Annie Ryan and writer Michael West join Seán Rocks in studio.

Tuesday 11th February

The Hunt Museum - Costume Exhibition

Costume designer Eimer Ni Mhaoldomhnaigh chats to Seán. Best Costume Goes to is an exhibition currently running at the Hunt Museum in Limerick. It is the story of the Irish film and television industry told through costume.

Irish Language Art song Project

The Irish Language Art Song Project sees 50 new Art songs set to Irish language texts performed in the National Concert Hall. Artistic Director of the project Dáirine Ní Mheadhra, Professor Alan Titley and Garrett Shouldice, score editor join Seán in studio.

American Dirt - Discussion

American Dirt is Jeanine Cummins third novel and a best-selling novel in 2019. However, accusations of racial stereotyping and misappropriation followed. To talk about the novel, and the ensuing controversy, Patrick Freyne and Chiamaka Enyi-Amadi join Seán in studio.

Monday 10th February

Music with Varo - Debut album

Traditional duo, Varo comprising Lucie Azconaga and Consuelo Nerea Breschi join Seán live in studio. They are performing songs from their self titled debut album and are accompanied on vocals by Niamh Bury.

Oscars review 2020

Chris Wasser joins Seán in studio reviewing the Oscars 2020 celebrations. It was a night of firsts from the ubiquitous Parasite's historic Best picture win to Elton John and Bernie Taupins first Oscar together for (I'm Gonna) Love Me Again.

Gairim chun Eireann - Louis de Paor

Poet Louis de Paor with Gairim chun Eireann (A Call to Ireland). Also featuring the vocals of Bríd Ní Neachtain, Olwyn Foueré, Stephen Rea, Naisrín Elsafty and Caitlín Ní Chualáin.

Strange Hotel - Eimear McBride

EImear McBride chats to Seán about her third novel Strange Hotel. The award-winning author of A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing, is one of the most talked-about debuts of the last decade. The new novel follows an unnamed woman through her mid 30s to late 40s through five anonymous hotel rooms in five cities.

Friday 7th February

Galway 2020 Moya Cannon Poem - A Song at Imbolc

Poet Moya Cannon reading her poem 'A Song at Imbolc' commissioned by Galway 2020 and Poetry Ireland.

Galway 2020 Savage Beauty - Light Installation

Paula Shields speaks to Finnish artist Kari Kola. For four days, from 14th to March 17th, Kari Kola will create one of his extraordinary light installations in the heart of Connemara. Savage Beauty will be the largest lit artwork ever made and is set to take place in Ceann Garbh and Lough na Fooey near the Galway / Mayo border.

Galway 2020 Artists

Kay Sheehy chats to visual and conceptual artist Louise Manifold on Aerial Sparks an innovative multifaceted artist collaboration. Also Marc Mac Lochlainn founder of Theatre company Branar discussing Sruth na Teanga.

Galway 2020 Festivities

Sinéad Egan reports from Ballinasloe's fire procession for Arena - with plenty of chat and drums galore.

Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture Programme

Kay Sheehy chats to poet Louis de Paor and Helen Marriage, Creative Director of Galway 2020.

Thursday 6th February

Breadboy in the Lyric Theatre Belfast

Peter Wilson, also known as Duke Special chats to Seán about 'Breadboy' which will run at the Lyric Theatre in Belfast this Summer. 'Breadboy' is the follow-up novel from Tony Macaulay's 'Paperboy' set in 1970s Belfast.

Beckett in London double-bill

Maev Kennedy reviews the opening of two different Beckett performances in London. Endgame – starring Alan Cumming and Daniel Radcliffe at the Old Vic Theatre and a triple performance of Krapp’s Last Tape, Eh Joe and The Old Tune starring Niall Buggy and Lisa Dwan is at Jermyn Street Theatre.

Kirk Douglas remembered

Veteran actor Kirk Douglas died yesterday at the age of 103. Donald Clarke remembers the Hollywood golden age actor.

Film reviews

Sarah Taaffe Maguire and Donald Carke review the latest releases. Mr Jones directed by Agnieszka Holland is a political thriller based on investigative journalist Gareth Jones uncovering the Soviet man-made famine in the Ukraine. Also Birds of Prey starring Margot Robbie and top Oscar winner Parasite.

Wednesday 5th February

The Pale Horse TV review

Declan Hughes reviews the upcoming BBC drama. Writer Sarah Phelps’s latest Agatha Christie adaptation, The Pale Horse, comes to BBC1 this Sunday. It is loosely based on Christie’s novel and is Phelps fifth Agatha Christie adaptation.

Alina Bzhezhinska -Jazz Harpist

Jazz harpist Alina Bzhezhinska joins Kay Sheehy ahead of a ten date Irish tour with the her quartet and discusses many topics including her latest album 'Inspiration'.

Why Women Read Fiction: the Stories of Our Lives

Women read and buy more fiction than men. Why is that? Author Helen Taylor canvassed the views of more than 500 women about their reading habits for her book 'Why Women Read Fiction'. Helen Taylor, Lisa McInerney and Sinead Gleeson discuss the topic with Kay Sheehy.

Tuesday 4th February

The Water Dancer - Ta-Nahesi Coates

Peter Murphy reviews 'The Water Dancer'. The latest novel from Ta-Nahesi Coates explores race relations and contemporary culture in America.

Mr Jones - Agnieszka Holland

The acclaimed Polish filmmaker, Agnieszka Holland recently spoke to Seán Rocks. 'Mr Jones' tells the story of journalist Garreth Jones and his attempts to investigate the truth of Stalin’s Russia.

Traditional guitarist Steve Cooney and Cormac Breatnach

Steve Cooney is instantly recognizable as one of most influential guitarists in the traditional genre. He chats to Kay Sheehy about his first solo album, Ceol Ársa Cláirsí which takes old tunes specifically composed for the Irish harp and transposes them for guitar. Cormac Breatnach and Steve Cooney perform live in studio.

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Contact the Show

Email: arena@rte.ie

 Twitter: @RTEArena

Text: 51551

Presenter: Seán Rocks


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