Trevor Conway, a Sligoman living in Galway since 2005, writes mainly poetry, fiction and songs. He has recorded an album of his songs, released in 2013. His work has appeared in magazines and anthologies across Ireland, Austria, India, the UK, the US and Mexico, where his poems have been translated into Spanish. These publications include ROPES, Decanto, Read This, Fusion, The Literary Yard, Cuadrivio, Periodico de Poesia, Poetic Expressions and Poetry Salzburg Review. Subjects he’s drawn to include nature, creativity, football and people/society, especially the odd ways in which we look at the world. In 2011, he was awarded a Galway City Council bursary. He is a contributing editor for The Galway Review, and his first collection of poems is forthcoming from Salmon Poetry. http://trevorconway.weebly.com/
Preview of Oscar Wilde Festival, Galway: 4th-6th September
By Trevor Conway
The Oscar Wilde Festival, Galway will kick off again in just under two weeks, and this year’s programme signals a step-up from last year’s incarnation. An Pucan bar hosts the opening, which will be launched by Michael Seeney, of the Oscar Wilde Society. Michael will also give a talk about how Oscar Wilde’s image/brand has been used on such items as record sleeves, perfumes, tea-towels and mugs in the 115 years or so since his death. I’ve heard Michael speak before, and know that he is a treasure trove of very entertaining stories about Wilde memorabilia and general Wilde-related topics.
This year’s festival also sees people getting out and about. A Wilde-themed walking tour begins at the steps of the Hotel Meyrick on Eyre Square, an event which takes place on Friday but is repeated on Saturday and Sunday. Meanwhile, on Sunday 6th at 10am, a bus will leave the cathedral car park, destined for Castle Ellen House, near Athenry. This is the stately home (filled with a fascinating collection of stuffed animals) which Wilde visited as a youngster, and where Edward Carson grew up. Carson, of course, is the man who prosecuted Wilde, leading to his two-year prison sentence, and ultimately his tragic demise. It is interesting to note that the two also attended Trinity College together, knowing each other long before their paths would cross so dramatically in court. There will be a talk and some refreshments served at Castle Ellen House, but hurling fans need not worry – you’ll be back well in advance of the All-Ireland Final throw-in.
There will also be a talk on Wilde’s plays, given by Ian Walsh of NUIG. It will take place in the Harbour Hotel on Saturday 5th, and will be followed by the excellent 1999 film of Wilde’s play “An Ideal Husband”, starring Rupert Everett, Julianne Moore and Cate Blanchett. All in all, this year’s programme seems to have a better dynamic than last year’s programme, which included some tenuous links to Wilde. Each event shows evidence of careful thought and planning, and is sure to entertain Wilde fans, whether those new to his work or those who can quote whole passages at random after a few too many whiskeys.
Friday, September 4th at 5.30pm, An Pucan Bar (FREE EVENT): Festival Opening
Friday, September 4th at 7.30pm, Begins at Hotel Meyrick (8/10 euro): Wilde’s Walking Tour of Galway City
Saturday, September 5th at 12 noon, John B Keane suite, Harbour Hotel (5 euro): Wilde at the Abbey: How Wilde’s Plays Were Produced and Received in Ireland
Saturday, September 5th at 2.30pm, Begins at Hotel Meyrick (8/10 euro): Wilde’s Walking Tour of Galway City
Saturday, September 5th at 5pm, John B Keane suite, Harbour Hotel (FREE EVENT): The Face of Oscar Wilde: Perfumes, Cartoons and Tea-towels – Oscar Wilde in Words and Pictures
Saturday, September 5th at 8pm. John B Keane suite, Harbour Hotel (8 euro): An Ideal Husband (film)
Sunday, September 6th at 10am sharp, Bus leaves Cathedral Car Park (15 euro): Trip to Castle Ellen House – The Edward Carson Connection
Sunday, September 6th at 11am, Begins at Hotel Meyrick (8/10 euro): Wilde’s Walking Tour of Galway City
Sunday, September 6th at 6.30pm, An Pucan Bar: Festival Party
Tickets available here: