Community Arts Programmes Get a Major Boost in East Cork

By Seamus Whelehan

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Community Arts projects throughout East Cork received a welcome boost earlier this week when they shared in Cork County Council’s Arts Scheme 2017.
This year the Council had 204 applications for the arts programme.
With a total budget of €155,000, 145 groups throughout the county received grant aid assistance.
The largest overall grouping for applications came from the voluntary sector, accounting for almost 70%
Ian McDonagh head of the Arts Scheme said it was very important to recognise these organisations that are very much keeping the arts alive in the county.
He said the festival sector is very strong in the county extending right beyond what we might consider to be festival season during the summer.
The earliest festival the authority will fund in East Cork this year is the Cobh Arts Festival from the 1-7 May.
The theatre sector accounted for the largest increase in applications this year, with 22 applications, an increase of 11 on 2016.
Mr McDonagh said the increase “points to an energy and vitality in the sector. It also provides an opportunity for county venues to programme and introduce new work to audiences.”
Last year 132 arts organisations and artists were supported through the arts scheme.
The funding supported the involvement of 1,348 volunteers in cultural activity within communities, enabling 8,500 actively participate in the arts, including the elderly, young people and those with special needs.
These organisations helped reach an audience of over 125,000 generating almost €1million in the community.
31 festivals which received grant aid in 2016 is estimated to have created €1.5million for the local economy.
This year the following East Cork projects were successful:
Sirius Art Centre Cobh €1000 to assist the exhibition of new works by Stephen Brandes.
YSEDG Mall Art Centre Youghal €2,500 to provide a programme of live arts.
Fota House €600 for a programme of light classical concerts and stage performances.
Killeagh Inch / Monday Club €400 for a creative activity programme for older adult.
Youghal Little Theatre €400 to rehearse and perform “too close to home”.
Mid-May Festival Midleton €2,000 to support strong artistic programme in visual arts and music.
First Cut Youth Film Festival €5,000 youth festival taking place in Youghal, featuring new films made by young people.
Cobh Carillion committee €700 90th season of carillon recitals July- September
Cobh Art Festival €500 literary and local heritage event May 1-7
Cobh Confraternity Brass and Reed Band €900 – 50th anniversary events programme
Comhaltas Craobh Eochaille €1,000 the establishment of East Cork Folk Orchestra in partnership with Midleton Comhaltas.
Cobh Youth services €500 for two mural based arts projects .

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