‘Aisling Gheal’ Screens at Tradfest

Dónal Ó Céilleachair’s documentary Aisling Gheal will screen at the IFI, Dublin as part of Tradfest this weekend on Saturday 25th January at 3:30pm.

The film quietly observes the participants of a sean-nós singing programme in the Munster Gaeltacht. Focusing on the relationship between renowned singer and teacher Máire Ní Chéileachair and her talented student, 11-year-old Shahira Apraku, the film immerses us in age-old musical traditions while challenging our notions of ‘Irishness’ in the process.

Shahira Apraku and Máire Ní Chéileachair, one of the greatest living sean-nós singers, will perform after the screening on January 25th. 


Competition: Win tickets to ‘Aisling Gheal’ at IFI Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival



The IFI Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival returns from September 26th to 29th at the Irish Film Institute in Temple Bar. This year’s festival promises outstanding documentaries from both Ireland and abroad, as well as shorts programmes and masterclasses throughout the four days, with many premieres and special guests in attendance.

Thanks to the good people at the IFI we have 2 pairs of tickets to Dónal Ó Céilleachair’s Aisling Gheal to give away. The film screens on Sunday, September 29th at 4pm and will be followed by a Q&A with the director.

To be in with a chance of winning yourself a pair, simply answer the following question:

Dónal Ó Céilleachair’s recent film Dreamtime, Revisited featured which Irish poet and philosopher?

Email filmireland@gmail.com with your answer before 5 pm on Friday, 27th September. Please leave a contact number.


About the film
Sean-nós is considered to be the holy grail of Irish traditional music and the Sean-nós singer is the living embodiment of a tradition that stretches far into Gaelic history. Aisling Gheal are a team of women passionately keeping Sean-nós alive and attracting young protégés all the time. Amongst them is 10-year-old Shahira Apraku who attends the local Gaelscoil and embodies an entire new generation of Irish speakers. Shahira’s journey, the struggles of the women, the songs of the Sean-nós and the flow of the Sullane river provide parallel intersecting narrative vehicles for this documentary, yielding insights into this part of our culture and challenging some of our key contemporary notions of ‘Irishness’ in the process.





Culture Night 2013: Film Programme


Culture Night 2013 will take place on Friday September 20th from 5pm-11pm

We preview the film programme for Culture Night, which takes place on Friday, 20th September. 34 counties, villages and towns nationwide will take part with every element of the programme completely free of charge.


1.      Dónal Ó Céilleachair Screenings – Cork County


Ionad Cultúrtha, Baile Mhúirne will be hosting film screenings by Dónal Ó Céilleachair on Culture Night 2013. Fans of domestic moviemaking will be treated to a night of creative visuals and the event is the perfect opportunity for newbies to discover the best of Irish cinema.


2.      Kildare Launch of The End of the Counter – Kildare


The End of the Counter captures the moment in 1965 when grocery shopping changed forever. Director Laura McGann, who hails from Newbridge, uses personal family archive as the starting point for the film. The Irish Times commented, “the footage shows young men dressed like extras from Mad Men wandering the cramped aisles of Ireland’s rural supermarkets and rubbing shoulders with young women dressed like Jackie Kennedy while their fathers and mothers shuffle past, looking bemused as they put Vim and Zip in their baskets…”. The film was awarded the Best Short Documentary Award at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh. Also screening in the Moat Theatre on the night is a documentary film of an intergenerational choir project in Naas and Maynooth, by Peter Kelly and other short domestic films. 9pm.


3.      Late-night Movie – Newry & Mourne District


A late-night movie screening will take place outside to coincide with the Newry Film Festival.


4.      Music From The Movies – Kildare


The Liffey Valley Orchestra and the Orchard Home and Garden centre invite you to a prom-style concert with ‘Music from the Movies’. Pieces will include, The Dambusters, The Great Escape, Colonel Bogey, Bridge on the River Kwai, American Patrol, Overture from The Sound of Music and many more favourites. Established in 1991, The Liffey Valley Orchestra caters for players of all ages and musical ability. The Orchard Home and Garden, established in 1987, is currently the Bord Bia Garden Centre of the Year. 7pm-8pm.


5.      Civic Theatre –Dublin


A spectacular performance is expected on Culture Night by the multi-award winning Rathfarnham Concert Band Society conducted by Conor O’Riordan. An Ensemble of 70 plus will take to the stage and perform music by Adele, Stravinsky, The Beatles, Queen and the Jersey Boys as well as music from Les Miserables and Dante’s Inferno and a special work by South County Dublin’s own multi award winning composer Vincent Kennedy. These musicians will amaze you, rock you, entertain you and lift your hearts and minds. 8 -9.30pm


6.      Irish Film Institute – Dublin


Free Screening of classic family-friendly Irish film The Boy From Mercury (1996). Directed by Martin Duffy and set in 1960s Dublin suburbia, the film depicts the story  of Harry, a little boy who feeds his imagination with a diet of Flash Gordon at his local cinema until he believes he too is from outer space. There will also be free Guided Tours of IFI Irish Film Archive – get behind the scenes to see where the nation’s heritage is preserved. Numbers limited. Visit www.ifi.ie for details.


7.      Filmbase: Get into Film – Dublin


Get into film with Filmbase! Drop by for lots of fun, film-related events throughout the night including free short film screenings, workshops and more.  Filmbase offers training, equipment hire, funding and more so it’s the perfect place for aspiring filmmakers to network and learn more about the industry.  5-11pm


8.      Goethe – Institut Ireland – Dublin


An evening of music, film, literature and art from Germany. The evening will feature  popular music, Oscar-nominated German short films and readings of contemporary German literature, an exhibition by Amanda Elena Conrad in the Return Gallery and a book sale. 5-11pm


9.      Greedy (Theatre) – Carlow


Director Jimmy Fay and writer and filmmaker Derek O’Connor share a passion for Erich Von Stroheim’s classic 1924 silent masterpiece Greed, an epic tale of hubris and folly – the original, eight hour cut is considered one of the great lost works of cinema. Fay and O’Connor are working on a stage adaptation of McTeague, the classic novel by Frank Norris that inspired Von Stroheim’s work, relocating the action from turn-of-the-century San Francisco to Ireland; here they offer a staged reading of the text, and a tantalising glimpse at a work in progress.


10.  Johanna Enlists Film Screening –  Carlow


Carlow native, William Desmond Taylor, directs America’s Sweetheart Mary Pickford, the world’s first movie star, in this highly popular WW1 patriotic comedy. On Culture Night, this classic silent movie screens for the first time in 95 years in the Director’s hometown. ‘Johanna Enlists’ will be shown with a unique improvised soundtrack and tells the delightful story of young love. The immortal advice of being careful what you wish for comes to the fore when two of the soldiers end up fighting over the naive Johanna. Musical accompaniment will be provided by local multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter, Eric Butler.


All events are free.


Culture Night: An Evening of Films by Dónal Ó Céilleachair & Friends



Ionad Cultúrtha, Baile Mhúirne will be hosting an evening of films by Dónal Ó Céilleachair & Friends on Culture Night, Friday, September 20th, 2013.


Ionad Cultúrtha, which is an arts centre in the heart of the Múscraí Ghaeltacht, is screening Dónal’s works and collaborations.


His works to date have been screened all over the world including for example at
the Irish Cultural Week, Havana, Cuba;
The Queen Sofia National Art Museum, Madrid;
The EU Film Festival, Cambodia & Vietnam,
and at the Rotterdam International Film Festival.


Originally from Macroom,  Co. Cork, Dónal lived in New York for many years and is currently based between New York & Ireland.


Evening’s Schedule:
‘Scéalta Múscraí/Muskerry Stories’ 60 mins, 2011- 6.00 pm;
‘Aisling Gheal/Bright Vision’, 80 mins, 2013 – 7.00 pm; (view a preview on http://www.vimeo.com/12493510
‘Dreamtime Revisited’ 77 mins, 2012 – 8.30pm (more info at www.anupictures.com)
Q/A with Dónal to follow the last screening at 9.30 pm


Entrance; Free


Further information on the films and on Dónal Ó Céilleachair’ work at


Further information on Ionad Cúlturtha at

World Premiere of the 35mm Print of Peidhleacán Solais

Peidhleacán Solais (Butterfly Light), a short experimental film by Muskerry students working with filmmaker Dónal Ó Céilleachair, will receive its world premiere at Rotterdam’s 38th International Film Festival, which runs from 21st January to 1st February, 2009.

This film was made as part of Súil Lán (Eye-Full), the 2008 Muskerry Gaeltacht Filmmaker Residency at Ionad Cultúrtha of the Gaeltacht.

Click on www.filmfestivalrotterdam.com for full programme information.