Theatre: “The Incomplete Works” – Footsbarn at the Kilkenny Arts Festival

The world-renowned Footsbarn will visit the Kilkenny Arts Festival this August with a newly-created show to mark the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death. The company describe The Incomplete Works as a Shakespearean cabaret filled with humour and gravitas, magic and humour, where anything is possible – a three-headed Shakespeare, an audition of male Juliets, a duel between two of the Bard’s greatest villains, and a giant apparition of the Dark Lady from the Sonnets.

Founded in Cornwall in 1971, Footsbarn’s name comes from its original rehearsal space (a barn belonging to the Foot family) and the company settled in central France in the early 1990s. Since its foundation, Footsbarn has produced over 60 plays and has performed around the globe, becoming Europe’s leading travelling theatre ensemble. Footsbarn’s past Shakespeare productions in Ireland include A Midsummer Night’s Dream (1995), The Tempest (2005), Perchance To Dream (2005), and The Indian Tempest (2012), and this will be the company’s first visit to Kilkenny.

The Incomplete Works plays at the Kilkenny Arts Festival from August 5th-13th, 2016.

Tickets are available now from the Kilkenny Arts Festival website.



Workshop: Shakespeare, Here & Elsewhere


Join Prof. Mark Thornton Burnett (Queen’s University Belfast) for a workshop on Shakespeare and world cinema, among other things.

Saturday, 14th May, 2.00 pm – Studio Theatre, dlr LexIcon, Dun Laoighaire

Booking here:

This is part of the ‘Shakespeare Lives Across the Island’ programme, which can be downloaded here. More #Shakespeare400 and British Council #ShakespeareLives events can be found on the blog using the tag #ShaxIRL400. Follow us on Twitter at @ShakesinIreland.

Globe on Screen: Shakespeare from the world’s most famous stage – direct to your local cinema

Guest post by Kate Timperley

In a year full of celebrations commemorating the 400 year anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, Arts Alliance are delighted to be working with Shakespeare’s Globe to bring six thrilling, highly acclaimed productions from the world’s most famous stage to a cinema near you.

As someone completely passionate about accessibility to the arts, I am lucky enough to run the Arts Alliance Ambassador programme, a global network of arts-loving volunteers who share our passion for bringing the arts – theatre, opera, ballet, art – to as many people as possible across the world, via our screenings in cinemas. We believe there should be no barriers to experiencing the arts, not cost, not geography or any vague feeling that the arts are not for you for whatever reason. We are some 160 in number, spanning the globe – from the UK to the US, from France to Spain, from India to Denmark, and of course Ireland.

The Ambassador Network is really delighted to be working currently on spreading the word on the Globe on Screen. Seeing these stunning productions straight from the world’s most famous stage via Globe on Screen is a wonderful opportunity for everyone – students and teachers studying the work of the Bard, those that have been or go regularly to Shakespeare’s Globe and want to explore how it looks and feels in the cinema, or those that cannot make it to London for reasons of cost or geography and want to experience the magic of Shakespeare’s Globe round the corner from home for the price of a cinema ticket, and those who’ve never seen or heard much of Shakespeare before and want to use the cinema as an easy, convenient and cost-effective way in to see whether it’s for them.

We love that everyone can experience the magic of Shakespeare in the comfort of local cinema, at an affordable price, at a time that suits them. Sitting in the best seat in the house, you will be able to focus on what matters to you most – the text, the costume, the acting, the staging….or all of the above!

The first production of this year’s Globe on Screen series is that most searching exploration of sexual politics and social justice, Measure for Measure. This was outgoing Artistic Director Dominic Dromgoole’s final production in the Globe’s outdoor space, and it received rave reviews for production and acting: “Shakespeare without a safety net…it’s noisy, it’s earthy, it’s unruly…’s a corking good time, clear enough to make the play count, with a quite astonishing feat of acting at its heart” (Variety)

Globe on Screen - Measure

Cinema audiences react as theatre audiences – laughing, engaged, passionate, moved – and burst into spontaneous applause. In cinemas, you see things that you may have missed in the theatre – the minute, joyous details of the staging, the performances.

And what better play to dive into the details of than the thrilling Globe production of Merchant of Venice, starring Jonathan Pryce as Shylock?

Globe on Screen - Merchant


In some of his most highly-charged scenes, Shakespeare dramatises the competing claims of tolerance and intolerance, religious law and civil society, justice and mercy; while in the character of Shylock he created one of the most memorable outsiders in all theatre. Described by reviewers as “The Globe at its best….a finely balanced, intelligent production” (The Times), this production is returning to the Globe later this year, as well as going on an international tour. What better way to join the conversation than seeing this amazing production in your local cinema?

And what of Sir Ian McKellen’s assertion – that seeing a Shakespeare play makes the words come alive: “if you see Shakespeare on stage, much of the difficulty goes” – we want to encourage people into cinemas to challenge the perception that Shakespeare is not for them, because it is too hard, too complex, or not for them.

How about Richard II as a way in to Shakespeare? Dazzlingly eloquent and ceremonious, Richard II invests a weak and self-dramatising man with tragic status and represents Shakespeare’s most searching exploration of the meaning of kingship and the rising powers that can destroy it. A “lucid and compelling….highly intelligent and fast-moving production” (What’s On Stage), starring Charles Edwards in the title role of this often underrated history play, it feels like the most fitting production for both the Globe and for cinemas, a briskly intelligent production that gives the play exceptional variety of texture.

Globe on Screen - stage

We will shortly be announcing the second three plays in this year’s Globe on Screen series – watch this space to see which of the new productions from Shakespeare’s Globe’s new Artistic Director Emma Rice Wonder Season will be see in cinemas and brought to audiences globally.

Get involved with the conversation on social media at #GlobeOnScreen

See the trailer for this season’s trio of screenings from Shakespeare’s Globe.

Find out more and book your tickets at: 

Find out more about Arts Alliance at Arts Alliance

The Globe on Screen series will be in cinemas in May and June across Ireland including at Movies@Dundrum, Movies@Swords, Movies@Gorey, SGC Dungarven, and the Pavilion Dun Laoghaire – tickets available now.

[Guest blog post written by Kate Timperley – Ambassador Network Marketing Manager for Arts Alliance]


Programme: Shakespeare Lives, 2016


The full programme of events marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death is now available for download: Shakespeare Lives Across the Island – Conversations and Celebrations 2016.

This fantastic line-up, happening all across Ireland, is in partnership with the British Council, and involves universities, museums, libraries and theatres on both sides of the border.

Here’s a preview of just some of the upcoming events:


Irish Renaissance Seminar, QUB: Shakespeare Lives across the Island

on Saturday 7th May, 12pm- 7pm, in the Old Staff Common room, QUB


“Shakespeare: Here and Elsewhere” workshop, dlr Lexicon

a workshop on Shakespeare in film and modern popular culture at dlr Lexicon, Dun Laoighaire, 14th May 


Public talks: UCD – Abbey Theatre Shakespeare Lectures 2016

11th May, 7pm, Pearse Museum:  Prof. Andrew Murphy (University of St Andrews),‘Shakespeare and Irish Radicalism: The Road to 1916’

12th May, 5pm, Abbey Theatre (Peacock):  Prof. Gordon McMullan (King’s College, London), ‘Remembering and Forgetting Shakespeare in 1916’

27th May, 4pm, Abbey Theatre (Peacock): Dr Farah Karim-Cooper (Shakespeare’s Globe), ‘Gesture on the Shakespearean Stage’

9th June, National Library, 7pm: Prof. Margaret Kelleher (UCD) and Prof. Danielle Clarke (UCD): ‘An “Irish Mode”? The Literary Writings and Legacy of Thomas MacDonagh. A conversation, with selected readings from MacDonagh’s works, performed by the UCD Ad Astra Drama Scholars


Symposium: Shakespeare 400 Ireland, NUIM, 21-22 Oct 2016

with a keynote lecture by Professor Willy Maley (University of Glasgow) ‘”They are rising, they are rising”: Shakespeare and 1916’, and papers by Professor Mark Burnett (Queens University Belfast), Dr Jane Grogan (UCD) and Professor Patrick Lonergan (NUI Galway)


More events can be found here.


Check back for more details soon, including an exhibition on Sir Kenneth Branagh at Queen’s University Belfast, a Shakespeare Day at Trinity College Dublin, and a performance of Pericles, Prince of Tyre in association with University College, Cork.

You can also follow what’s happening on Twitter @ShakesinIreland and using the hashtag #ShaxIRL400. Get in touch and let us know what you think!

Family Event: Discover Shakespeare at the Ulster Museum

Discover Shakespeare

Time/Date – 12:00 – 16:00, Sunday 24 April 2016

Celebrate 400 years of Shakespeare at the Ulster Museum. In partnership with the School of English at Queen’s University Belfast, explore different aspects of Shakespearean life.


12:00pm – 3:00pm – Enjoy performances and participate in activities in the Learning Zone

  • Make an Elizabethan ruff and draw Shakespeare’s characters
  • Explore an Elizabethan toy box
  • Listen to and take part in mini Shakespearean plays
  • Enjoy Shakespearean word games
  • Continue a Shakespearean treasure hunt through the museum!
  • This is a free event – booking is not necessary.

3:00pm – 4:00pm – Public Lecture: Shakespeare’s Theatres – Dr Edel Lamb, QUB

  • This talk will be held in the Lecture Theatre on the ground floor. For further information, please contact Ulster Museum Reception on 028 9044 0000 or email
  • This is a free event – booking is not necessary

More information here: