NATIONWIDE WEEK 5

PRESENTER BLÁTHNAID NÍ CHOFAIGH

MONDAY 30TH JANUARY

DROMCOLLOGHER FIRE/REPORT MARIAN MALONE

In 1926, a fire in a makeshift cinema in Dromcollogher, County Limerick, killed 48 people – it was the Stardust Disaster of its time, and made national and international headlines. Almost a century later, a new play, inspired by the tragedy, opens this week in the nearby town of Charleville, County Cork. Our reporter, Marian Malone has been finding out all about it.

Website: www.schoolyardtheatre.com

AONGHUS MCANALLY & SNOOKER/REPORT NIALL MARTIN

When popular RTE radio and TV presenter Aonghus McAnally retired in 2020, he quickly filled the vacuum with his other passions - snooker and billiards. Niall Martin went to meet him at his home in Portmarnock in north county Dublin.

Website: www.sbireland.ie

WEDNESDAY 1ST FEBRUARY

PRESENTER BLÁTHNAID NÍ CHOFAIGH

SAINT BRIGID'S DAY PROGRAMME FROM COUNTY LOUTH

Faughart in County Louth is the reputed birthplace of Saint Brigid,we follow in the Saint’s footsteps in Louth and also in County Kildare and learn of the Saint’s connection to these two counties.Plus, we speak to one of the organisers of the St Brigid of Faughart Festival and learn of the significance of this ancient Celtic Goddess and Christian Saint today.

Website: www.brigidoffaughart.ie

Website: https://brigid1500.ie/Events/

DUNDALK BELLS/REPORT MARY FANNING

We are in Dundalk for the ringing of bells at St Joseph’s Redemptorist Church. The bells are part of the town’s history and life, where they have rung out for over a century with many twists and turns on that journey through time. A few years ago, a massive project was mounted to restore and refurbish the bells and the belfry tower and this year they celebrated their return and embraced their joyful tones after two years of silence. Mary Fanning has the story.

KILDARE CONNECTION/REPORT BLÁTHNAID NÍ CHOFAIGH

The people of Louth have a long tradition of devotion and connection to Saint Brigid, but last year Bláthnaid was in County Kildare and met with Senior Librarian in Kildare County Council, Mario Corrigan, to find out all about Saint Brigid’s associations with that County and of plans for 'Brigid 1500’ in 2024.

FRIDAY 3RD FEBRUARY

PRESENTER BLÁTHNAID NÍ CHOFAIGH

This evening we honour two people who have made outstanding contributions in different fields of Irish culture, one through music and song and the other in keeping Irish folk tradition alive and well in County Kerry.

PADDY REILLY/REPORT MARY FANNING

We begin with Balladeer, Paddy Reilly who has been a powerful voice for Ireland over his lifetime. His recording of the ‘Fields of Athenry’ made the song famous all over the world. In recent times his career has been immortalized in his autobiography called, ‘The Fields of Athenry to The Dubliners and Beyond’. We asked our Mary Fanning to visit Paddy and to bring us on a journey with him down memory lane.

SIAMSA TÍRE/REPORT MARIAN MALONE

The National Folk theatre of Ireland, Siamsa Tíre in Tralee, has pioneered the promotion of Irish folk music and dance. Generations of singers and dancers have performed on the Siamsa stage and have brought their unique cultural experience on tour all over the world. The driving force behind Siamsa Tíre was Father Pat Ahern, and he’s recently written a book recounting his colorful life adventures. Our reporter Marian Malone has been to Kerry to find out all about him.

Website: www.siamsatire.com