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Published on September 24th, 2009 | by darraghdoyle


There’s SO MUCH happening in Dublin for Culture Night 2009

Are you ready for Friday night in Dublin? Are you ready for some culture?

This is the fourth Culture Night and it is, to many, one of the most eagerly anticipated cultural nights of the year. With more cultural events crammed into one evening than any one person could possibly do, it’s certainly going to be a busy night for the families, friends and tourists about to take part.

This year, organisers Temple Bar Cultural Trust have expanded Culture Night into Tralee, Sligo, Letterkenny, Mayo, Wexford and Roscommon, while Galway, Limerick, Cork and Waterford are again taking part. Will’s posts on Cork are here and here.

So in Dublin over 120 organisations will be opening their doors until late. There is so so much happening that I’ll direct you over to their website or to download the programme if you haven’t already, but I wanted to tell you some of the ones that I’ve seen that really caught my eye.

First though, an important couple of things:

Here’s a big map to download in PDF format.

There are FREE BUSES that will leave every 20 minutes from three different bus stops from 6pm to 11pm.

For those who want to take the LUAS, there are 50 FREE TICKETS (Adult 1 Day All Zones ticket valid for unlimited travel on both Red and Green LUAS lines on the Friday). These tickets will be issued one per person on a first come, first served basis and will be available to pick up in person at the Temple Bar Cultural Information Centre, 12 East Essex Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2 from today.


There are a total of seven different areas where events are happening. These are – and you can click to go to each section – the Heuston Museum Quarter, the Historic Quarter, Temple Bar and North of the Liffey; North Georgian Quarter; Trinity College/Docklands; South Georgian Quarter and outdoors.

I’ve picked out what I think are some of the top events, but do check out the website for more. I’ll also do this in a “DO THIS NOW” post later today as well.

Top events in the Heuston/Museum Quarter

St John Bosco Youth Centre, Davitt Road, Drimnagh, Dublin 12 – open until 10pm

Open until 10pm, The Bosco is a vibrant and energetic centre for young people in Drimnagh. The night’s line up includes dance performances and workshops:

7pm Hip-hop workshop. 7.45pm Hip-hop showcase.
8pm Slow dance workshop. 8.45pm Slow dance showcase.
9pm Freestyle workshop. 9.45pm Freestyle showcase.

You can also see their 48ft x 8ft Changes Mural:

Irish Museum of Modern Art, Royal Hospital, Kilmainham – open until 11pm.

Events include the opening of the exhibition IMMA Limited Editions and education book launch from 6pm, followed by a talk at 7.30pm. Visit the artists’ studios
in the Artists’ Residency Programme from 8.30-10pm; plus four other exhibitions, music and refreshments.

The Guinness Storehouse, St James’s Gate, Dublin 8. – last admission 11pm

There’s free entry and a complimentary pint of Guinness (for those over the age of 18) together with the opportunity to see Dublin at night from the famous Gravity Bar. There’s tours, lessons on how to pull the perfect pint and a live DJ in the Source Bar.

There’s also a chance to see the Guinness Archive, open until 8pm with a number of key documents on display, such as original brewing books from Arthur Guinness’ era and select Guinness advertisements. The Guinness archivists will be on-hand to answer any historical enquiries visitors may have.

James Joyce House of the Dead, Usher’s Island – open until 12 midnight

An informal evening for guests to experience the atmosphere and song of the most important dining room in world literature. You are welcome to sing a song, but only if you do it well!

Honourable mentions:

The National Museum at Collins Barracks open until 9pm, the Natural History exhibit there, The Lighthouse Cinema and NCAD, open until 11pm

The Historic Quarter

The Contemporary Music Centre, 19 Fishamble Street, Temple Bar – open to 12 midnight

Get this – they’re going to have a dew indoor and outdoor sound installations and performances but one of them has an interactive iPhone/iPod Touch installation. Here are interviews with composers Jonathan Nagle, Brian Bridges and Brian Solon.

Gallery Zozimus, 56 Francis Street, Dublin 8 – open until 12 midnight

Gallery Zozimus will host an exhibition of works by legendary French street artist Jef Aerosol whose stencil works adorn some the most famous places on the planet. Come along and see a truly one-off show. Make sure that you join in The Francis Street Treasure Hunt and you could win a fabulous piece of art.

Monster Truck Gallery & Studios, 73 Francis Street, Dublin 8 – open until 12 midnight

I did have a reason for including that, honestly – it’s to do with Irish artist Brendan Flaherty‘s exhibition there, which also has paintings by Anne Hendrick, David Eager Maher and Bennie Reilly, There’s also the new work ‘The Power of Music’ on display.

Dublinia and the Viking World, Christchurch, Dublin 8 – open until 9.30pm

Dublinia and the Viking World will have all exhibitions open, ‘The Viking World’, ‘Life in Medieval Dublin’ and our new archaeology based exhibition. Costumed characters will also be situated around the exhibitions.

Honourable mentions:

Temple Bar and North of the Liffey

Exchange Dublin, 1 Exchange St Upper, Temple Bar – open until 12 midnight

Exchange Dublin is a new collective arts centre run entirely by young people and holds discussions, gigs, visual arts and performance. It is a non-alcohol space and
events are open to people of all ages. Come and meet some of the volunteers!

The Gaiety School of Acting, Sycamore St, Temple Bar – open till 12 midnight

Free drama workshops will be held for both adults and children throughout the night, as well as an inter-generational performance on Meeting House Square at 7pm and 9pm, comprising of grand-parents and their grand-children, highlighting the contrasting issues faced by young people today and in past generations.

The Ark, 11a Eustace St, Temple Bar – open until 10pm

Experience arts activities for all the family at The Ark. Short drop-in dance performances in the theatre from junk ensemble and drop-in visual arts workshops from 5pm – 9pm, and an exhibition of artworks by children in the gallery on view until 10pm.

The Winding Stair Bookshop, 40 Lower Ormond Quay, Dublin 1

The Winding Stair and Jouissance Productions will celebrate Culture Night 2009 with short atmospheric studies held in the bookshop, with winners of the Pririt of the Fringe Award 2008, Louisa Carroll and Sorcha Kenny.

Honourable mentions:

  • Live music, poetry and short readings until 10pm at OXFAMBOOKS on 23 Parliament Street
  • Seamus Nolan at the Project Arts Centre
  • Guided tours of exhibitions, darkrooms and training facilities at the Gallery of Photography on Meeting House Square
  • The works of Mary Fitzgerald, Wendy Judge, Ciaran Murphy, Kevin Cosgrove, Kate Warner, Sarah Lincoln, Cliona Harmey, Felicity Clear, Una Guy and John McMenamin at the Independent Studios

North Georgian Quarter

The Dublin Writers Museum, 18 Parnell Street North, Dublin 1 – open until 10pm

‘Love Passion and Sorry, I’ve Got a Headache’ , the show is an entertaining look at love, in literature and music, featuring authors such as Walter Raleigh, Pam Ayres, Anne Frank, Roger McGough, Mick Jagger, Oscar Wilde, E.E Cummings, Christy Brown, Padraic Colum, W.B Yeats and others through readings and song. Performed by the Irish Actors Theatre Company at 7.30pm.

Gate Theatre, Parnell Square, Dublin 1 – open until 12 midnight

From 6pm to 6:45pm – Renowned playwright, Conor McPherson discusses the new Gate Theatre production of The Birds, which he adapted from the short story by Daphne Du Maurier, and will also direct. Book those seats online.

St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral, Marlborough Street, Dublin 1 – open until 10pm

5.15pm – 6.15pm: Sung Vespers and Mass with the Palestrina Choir. 7pm – 10pm: Emmanuel in the City – 600 Second Level students from all over Dublin singing contemporary church music from the Emmanuel diocesan programme while raising money for Dublin’s homeless.

Honourable mentions:

  • The live music in the Hugh Lane Gallery forecourt from 6.30 to 8.30 pm
  • The readings and panel discussions at the Irish Writers Centre
  • The limited edition postage-paid FREE Culture Night postcards to send anywhere in the world from the GPO.
  • The floodlit tours and museum activities at the GAA Museum in Croke Park

Trinity College/Docklands

The Abbey Theatre, 26 Lower Abbey Street, Dublin 1

To celebrate Culture Night, the Abbey has set aside 25 FREE tickets for two events on the Peacock stage: The Abbey Talks – Enda Walsh, writer and director of the award-winning play The New Electric Ballroom, in conversation, 6pm – 6.45pm. Then afterwards at 8pm, the Druid production of The New Electric Ballroom by Enda Walsh, 8pm. Both events are part of the 2009 Ulster Bank Dublin Theatre Festival. 25 Culture Night tickets for each event will be released at the Abbey Box Office at 10.30am on 25 September. Tickets will be offered on a first come first served basis.

Zoological Museum, Department of Zoology, Trinity College – open until 8pm

Visit the museum and come face-to face with Ireland’s ‘Last Great Auk’, the Tasmanian Wolf, The Great Indian Rhinoceros, mammoth remains, amazing insects and much more. Meet a mysterious mammal with a two-foot-long tongue, and hold the longest tooth of any living animal. Take a self-guided tour and get to handle
crocodiles, shark jaws, elephant teeth and the spectacular Frilled Lizard. Introductory walk and talks every 30mins from 5.30pm.

Visitor Centre, Custom House, Dublin 1 – open from 6pm to 10.30pm

I’ve never been – have you? The exhibition explores the main activities of the Government offices that occupied the building for over two hundred years – revenue collection, communications, poor relief, public health, housing and environmental matters.

Honourable mentions

(Can’t you tell I’m getting tired typing this now?)


Conradh na Gaeilge, 6 Sráid Fherarchair, open until 12 midnight

Fun and childrens’ games as Gaeilge with Ógras 6pm-8pm, Conradh na Gaeilge’s taster Irish language class open from 8pm – 9pm, Seachtain na Gaeilge music gig in
Club Chonradh na Gaeilge from 9pm–12 midnight and guided tours of the historic Uimhir a 6 building all night. Ceol, craic and refreshments for all the family!

POETRY IRELAND at the Unitarian Church on St Stephen’s Green – open until 11pm

From 6pm to 11pm in the, Poetry Ireland/Éigse Éireann will host an open-mic poetry event. Once you have signed up you can read for a maximum of 6 minutes. The evening will have a thread of special guests and comedy elements, sporadic spot prizes and music will be an integral part of the evening.

Archaeology Museum, Kildare Street, Dublin 2 – open until 9pm

This year, the National Museum of Ireland on Kildare Street will be hosting ‘Viking Night at the Museum’, celebrating our wonderful Viking collections. Guided tours
will introduce you to the exhibition. Make sure to catch Ragnar the Viking who will be paying a special visit to the Museum to talk about life in 10th century Dublin. Explore a chest of Viking Treasures, what could be inside? Events are run on a first come first served basis and no booking is required

Number 29, Georgian House Museum, 29 Fitzwilliam Street Lower, Dublin 2 – open until 10pm

After Dark in Georgian Dublin: Visit the Georgian House Museum for a free guided tour and experience this unique visitor attraction at a time of the day when the
house comes alive. Take part in one of our special evening events, including an evening stroll with writer and historian Pat Liddy and an interactive family workshop with Eanna Ní Leamhna, botanist, ecologist and broadcaster on RTÉ’s Mooney Show.

National Print Museum, Garrison Chapel, Beggars Bush, Haddington Road, Dublin 4 – open until 12 midnight

6-8pm Personalised keyring making for all the family using metal letters from old typesetting machines. 8-9.30pm – Ceoltóirí Carolan, a traditional harp group from
Co. Meath will delight audiences. 9.30pm – 10.30pm –Frank Kelly (best known as Fr Jack in Father Ted) will talk about his career as an actor, singer and writer, and about The Dublin Opinion, a satirical magazine founded and edited by his father, cartoonist Charles Kelly. All of these activities will happen as Culture Night newspaper is being printed in the old printing style.

Honourable mentions:

  • The RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra at the National Concert Hall
  • The tour of Leinster House
  • The talks on the Irish Manuscripts Commission at 45 Merrion Square
  • The musical performances by students from the DOT Conservatory of Music and Drama at St Stephen’s Peppercorn Church, Mount St

For outdoors I think I’ll do a different post 🙂 There’s enough there to keep you going anyways, eh?


About the Author

Blogger, event addict and fan of street and performance art. You can contact me directly at darraghdoyle[at]gmail[dot]com or @darraghdoyle on twitter.

7 Responses to There’s SO MUCH happening in Dublin for Culture Night 2009

  1. Two years ago (i think) I made use of culture night, to enjoy places i’d never even been in the daytime.

    Go Culture night!

  2. Séamus says:

    I was looking at the website and brochure last night, definitely a lot going on, great post with that info !

  3. Niall says:

    Holy hell that’s some amount of stuff. Sadly I’ll miss it all.

  4. Shell says:

    don’t forget all the Culture Night fun thats happening outside of Dublin!

    Check out http://www.thedock.ie/blog http://www.sligoarts.ie and http://www.roscommonarts.ie to see NorthWest happenings…its going to be great!

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