Festivals: 10 Days in Dublin
Back on the scene after last year’s triumphant debut is the inimitable 10DaysinDublin. Calling itself an ‘open-format’ arts festival, the beauty of this one is in its diversity. Not just theatre or comedy, it plays host to painting, music and any other type of creativity would-be performers can dream up, and we can advise from last year’s offerings that they can dream up plenty.
Undoubtedly, 10Days is not the only arts festival doing the rounds, but curiously a multi-disciplinary offering is something Dublin lacked before its inception. While there are plenty of theatre, music and comedy festivals on the go, there was no mixed bag to rival the arts festivals of Galway or Kilkenny. Sure, sometimes it’s a pleasure to escape your own city for a shindig down the country, but there’s a lot of comfort to be enjoyed from doing even less than a staycation and just hanging out in your own surrounds, soaking up the goings on. For giving us that pleasure, 10Days nestled its way into our affections last year, and we can only but recommend it as the perfect fakecation for Dubliners… laughs, pints, plays, frolics… and home to your own bed. It’s already slotted effortlessly into the calendar and with 90 shows on this year’s line-up, we reckon its set to make an even bigger impact this time around.
For the uninitiated, the festival takes place across… you’ve guessed it… ten days, in various venues around town. Happening from July 5th to 14th, they launched their line-up last week and though that leaves you plenty of time to peruse the programme and save the sheckles for the (very reasonably priced!) tickets, we’ve picked out a few highlights that Ramp.ie recommends to get you started.
On July 10th at 7.30pm in The Workman’s Club, the guffaw-inducing Conor O’Toole brings ‘The Funeral of Conor O’Toole’ to the stage. We haven’t seen it, but we did catch ‘Conor O’Toole’s Manual of Style’ – a show based entirely on fonts – at last year’s festival, and we can tell you that he’s funny, very very funny. Definitely worth a fiver funny.
The internet’s own Twistedlilkitty is an acquaintance of ours. We’ve followed (via the twitters) her move from Funny Internet User to Giving Comedy A Go to now being one quarter of an entire show! That show is Three Men and a Bitter Lady (lols at the name alone!) and it’s happening on July 10th and 11th from 20.30pm-21.30pm in The Twisted Pepper. If there were an internet version of supporting the locals, this would be it. They’re also funny, obviously.
Sketch trio Foil, Arms and Hog have been on our comedy radar for a while. They’ve been on the up and up with a couple of headline shows in Whelan’s and easily some of the best sketch comedy Ireland has to offer. They have razor sharp lines, spot-on delivery and faultless acting skills. We’re happy to put our money where our collective mouth is and say these guys are on the rise, so catch them for a fiver while you can. July 11th @ 19.30 in The Workman’s Club.
“Four girls in an unspecified area of Dublin are getting ready to go to a nightclub. What happens? Who knows? But they’re all a load of sluts…”, so goes the intro to Sluts – A play about stupid bitches, the unmissable highlight of 10Days’ theatre line-up. Sluts is the work of UCD Dramsoc’s Caitriona Daly and we caught it when it was staged at the university last year (a subtle indication that we are still young enough to have friends at college). Dealing deftly with the struggles of love and heartache, it also features some delicious put-downs and sharp dialogue. With a talent that belies her young age, Daly has written one of the most compelling shows we’ve seen in years and it deserves a jam-packed audience. The New Theatre, July 8th-11th, 6pm.
Something that jumped out at us from the programme was Heroin(e) for Breakfast – an Edinburgh Fringe success detailing the story of three flatmates battling ‘sex, drugs and Marilyn Monroe’. Billed as a mix of theatre and stand up comedy, it seems an ambitious feat, but easily well worth checking out. Matt Smyth, who’s making a name for himself on the Dublin theatre scene, is at the helm as Producer, and he’s also notable as one third of sketch group A Betrayal of Penguins. We reckon if anyone can pull off a theatre/stand-up mashup, he’s the guy. Smock Alley Studio, July 5th-12th, 8pm.