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The programme of events for the seventh annual SiarScéal Festival has just been announced. The festival opens on Thursday, March 7th, 2013. The full programme details are available to download here.
SiarScéal celebrates the culture and heritage of Roscommon. The Gathering is the theme for the 2013 festival: recognising and reaching out to the Irish diaspora, particularly those who originate from Roscommon.
Submissions are also being accepted for the annual Hanna Greally Literary Awards, which takes place in conjunction with the Festival. The closing date for entries is Friday, 15th February, 2013.
The full programme of events runs from March 7th - 9th (Thursday through to Sunday). It includes exhibitions that will be on display until the end of the month at Roscommon County Library, which also serves as the headquarters for the festival.
A special screening of Kanata an Irish Story will take place at the library on Friday, March 8th. It follows the lives of the Irish emigrants to Canada. Director and author, Eleanor McGrath will be present.
The formal launch of the festival will take place at 10am on Saturday, March 9th in Roscommon County Library. Canadian Ambassador to Ireland, Loyola Hearn will provide the keynote address. This will be followed by the presentation of the Hanna Greally Literary Awards and the Ger Hanily Memorial Cup. The Mayor of Roscommon, Cllr. Tom Crosby will also be attending. Festival patron and Roscommon County Librarian, Richie Farrell will officiate over proceedings.
The rest of the afternoon's programme (the Roscommon Samba, starting 2pm) will consist of a lively session of open mic readings, music, dance.
Later that evening, at Gleeson's Townhouse, The Square in Roscommon, the SiarScéal International Gathering will take place consisting of a Canadian/Irish collaborative concert. Tickets for this event, which starts at 7pm, are now on sale and can be booked from this website - more information.
At last year's festival a SiarScéal anthology, Roscommon in Reflection, was launched bringing together the best in the previous five years of work submitted. Copies of this anthology are available to buy online from this website. A Kindle edition has also been produced and is available to buy on Amazon.