Banter at Other Voices at the Electric Picnic (084, Aug 2014)

After various adventures over the last two years in Derry, Dingle and London, Banter is delighted to join Other Voices as they head into the woods at Stradbally Hall on their first ever visit to Co Laois and the Electric Picnic. By comparison, this is the third Picnic in a row for Banter, though we’re swapping our usual digs with Naoise Nunn and Mindfield for Other Voices’ bijou tent in the woods.

Square Electric Picnic Logo 2014_Music and Arts copy

On Saturday afternoon (4pm, Other Voices tent), Melvin Benn (Festival Republic) and Philip King (Other Voices) will join me to talk about the yin and yang of the modern festival. We’ll look at the long-term history of these musical feasts, how festivals have changed over the past decade or so, the new eclecticism which reigns at the better events, the differences in festival culture between countries and the future for these events.

A talk about festivals at a festival within a festival – prepare for the most meta hour of your weekend. There will also be a very special musical guest too who we can’t tell you about quite yet but, trust us, it will be worth it.

Living for the City: Dublin’s new cafe society (086, Sep 2014)

If it’s September, it’s time to go back to the Twisted Pepper. It’s been a while since we did a Banter in our spiritual home on Middle Abbey Street but we’re back in situ for what is looking like an action-packed autumn-winter schedule.

Our first night out for the autumn, the latest in the ongoing Living for the City series on living, working and playing in the capital, is a look at the city’s new-school cafes. A huge number of cafes have opened in the city in the recent while and it seems as if more are opening or expanding with every passing week. Where has this growth come from, what’s behind it and what’s next as taste buds get more adventurous?

Our panel of cafe fanatics are Maisha Lenehan (Bibis), Barry Stephens (147),Aisling Rogerson (The Fumbally) and Ketty Elisabeth (French Foodie In Dublin). You can check out Ketty’s photos and reviews of these cafes and dozens more in the city here.

Photo by Alpha https://www.flickr.com/photos/avlxyz

Photo by Alpha https://www.flickr.com/photos/avlxyz

The small print: Banter on Dublin’s cafe society takes place on Wednesday September 24 at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1). Doors open at 6pm and the Bantering gets underway at 6.30pm. There is a limited free guestlist available and you can sign up for it here.

Banter at Kinsale Arts Festival (087, Sep 2014)

After two visits to the town in 2013, the Banter series of talks and interviews returns to the Co Cork town for the Kinsale Arts Festival in September. We’ve sessions covering food, music, gardening and film-making and cracking guests for you to meet on Saturday and Sunday 27 and 28 September.

Here’s the line-up

Rory O’Connell (Saturday 1pm Lord Kingsale)

Rory-o-connell-fullMaster chef at work. Rory O’Connell has spent over 20 years cooking in the world’s finest kitchens alongside leading chefs and cooking advocates, including Nico Ladenis at Chez Nico, London, Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir aux Quat Saisons in Oxford, Alice Waters at Chez Panisse, California and Mrytle Allen at Ballmaloe House. Rory co-founded the Ballymaloe Cookery School with his sister, Darina Allen, and is also festival director of the Ballymaloe Literary Festival. His first book, “Master It: How to Cook Today” won the Andre Simon Award for Best Cook Book 2013.

Mary Reynolds (Saturday 2.30pm Lord Kingsale)

IMG_8137-300x300

Meet the gardener. Mary Reynolds, who won a gold medal at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2002 for her Celtic Sanctuary Irish wildflower garden, is a designer who seeks to create landscapes which are expressions of each individual place. A film about Mary’s story called Wild – which was written and directed by Vivienne de Courcy, stars Emma Greenwell amd Tom Hughes and was partly shot in west Cork – is due for release in 2015.

Iarla Ó Lionáird (Saturday 4pm St Multose Church)

Iarla-O-Lionaird-800x533

Cúil Aodha calling. Iarla Ó Lionáird is a singer, songwriter and musician with an unique voice and approach. Whether as a member of the Afro Celt Sound System and, more recently, the wonderful Irish-American band The Gloaming or as part of a plethora of other projects and collaborations from Ghost Trio and Crash Ensemble to work alongside Nico Muhly, Gavin Bryars, Dan Trueman and David Lang as well as film credits for Hotel Rwanda, Calavary and others, Iarla has long exhibited highly individual artistic ambitions when it comes to Irish music.

Pat Collins (Sunday noon The Black Pig)

0006313d-630

Pat Collins is a Cork-born filmmaker who has directed over two dozen acclaimed documentaries since leaving the work of criticism (he edited Film West magazine) and film festivals (Galway Film Fleadh programmer). He has won multiple awards for work which includes Michael Hartnett: A Necklace of Wrens, Oileán Thoraí, Marooned, Gabriel Byrne – Stories From Home and Pilgrim. In 2012, he released his first feature drama, Silence, about a sound recordist returning to Ireland for the first time in 15 years to take up a job recording landscapes free from man-made sound. His most recent work is Living In A Coded Land, a superb vivid look at the people and places of the Irish Midlands

Selling Irish food to the masses (Sunday 1.30pm The Black Pig)

A conversation with Sully (Cully & Sully) and Kieran Murphy (Murphy’s Ice Cream) about the business of food. How do you get a new food brand off the ground? What kind of work and research is involved in moving beyond just local sales and reach? What are the ups and downs on turning your food into a brand? What lessons are to be learned from scaling up?

Nuala O’Connor (Sunday 3pm The Black Pig)

Nuala O’Connor is the Dingle-based writer and producer behind some of the most compelling Irish documentary films in recent years. She worked as a producer and writer on such TV shows as Bringing It All Back Home (and won an Emmy Award for it), River of Sound (the seven-part series on Irish traditional music presented by Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin), The Raw Bar and The Limits of Liberty, a three part television history of 20th Century Ireland presented by Diarmaid Ferriter. In the last 12 months, she has worked on both Moment to Moment, the acclaimed documentary about The Gloaming, and Céiliúradh, the celebration of Irish music and culture at London’s Royal Albert Hall during the visit of President Michael D Higgins to the UK in April. She was also a traditional music reviewer for the Irish Times for many years.

Full information on all sessions and everything else going on at the festival from September 19 to 28 here. Big thanks to Marie McParlin and all at the festival for the return invitation to the town and their help in putting this on.

Banter at CultureTECH 2014 (085, Sep 2014)

It’s our second year in a row at CultureTECH, the week-long messy celebration of creative innovation which runs in Derry from September 15 to 21. We had a fantastic time at the festival last year – and we’ve also enjoyed ourselves enormously on visits to the Maiden City with Other Voices in ‘13 and ’14 – so it was an easy decision to say yes when we got the call from Mark Nagurski to come to the northwest again.

Our line-up for the Banter Big Kahunas evening is as follows:

Jamie Byng – publisher and managing director of Canongate

John Leland – New York Times journalist and author of Hip: The History

Steve Carson – Head of BBC Northern Ireland Productions and formerly Chief Editorial Advisor and Director, Factual Group at RTÉ

Hannah Donovan – Co-founder and design Director at This Is My Jam and previously Head of Creative for Last.fm

The event will take place at the historic St Augustine’s, Palace Street, Derry on Culture Night, Friday September 19 from 7pm. Admission is free, but advance booking is required and can be done here.

9a0be814-3d6d-4641-8dc0-d8a974ed9efb

Banter Sunday Brunch Summit at Mountain Dew (083, July 2014)

We’ve fans of unusual venues at Banter - from an artist’s kitchen in Donegal with a Picasso on the wall to a former bomb shelter in London – so rocking up to the O’Herlihy’s back garden in the wilds outside Macroom was par for the course. The occasion was the Mountain Dew Festival, the little festival in the heart of the countryside which has been running since 2011 featuring a hand-picked selection of local and international acts each year.

This time out, festival organiser Colm O’Herlihy invited us to host a Banter Sunday Brunch Summit and we were delighted to say yes. We’re huge fans of the Sunday morning radio review shows except we don’t think they’re done as well as they could be so we decided to do a Banter radio review show to see what it would be like. One thing we learned is that Marian really does earn her loot.

We’d Nialler9Angela Dorgan (FMC/Hard Working Class Heroes), Brendan Canty (Feel Good Lost) and Stevie Grainger (Red FM, formerly of the Pavilion and DJ Steamy Gee) reviewing the papers and having the chats about whatever caught their eye. We’d Eileen Hogan from UCC talking about the Sir Henry’s exhibition on-campus. We’d Jack Crotty from Rocket Man talking about his adventures in food to date (Rocket Man’s slow-cooked buffalo kebab from the night before got the thumbs up all round).

We’d the infamous Meltybrains? telling jokes and larking around. We’d festival organiser Colm O’Herlihy talking about why he puts on this event. We’d sweet performances from Daniel Martin Moore and Joan Shelley. And we’d a few Banter firsts with an onstage costume change and a panelist spectacularly leaving the stage.  A great day out in Co Cork.

Limerick City of Culture 2015 (082, July 2014)

It’s time for Banter to go back to Limerick and the Make A Move festival. We were here two years ago for a great discussion about Irish hip-hop and it’s a pleasure to get the invitation from Shane MacCurtain and team.

2014 was the year for Limerick’s arts and culture communities to shine thanks to becoming the first national city of culture. Despite some well-publicised teething problems, the year has produced a run of events and festivals to showcase the city’s culture vitality.

City-Of-Culture-2014-Logo_0_6

The big question, though, is what comes next. When the circus leaves town at midnight on December 31, will Limerick cease to be a city of culture? Does a city like Limerick need a city of culture designation to show off its wares? Isn’t culture supposed to be more about bed nights? What will Limerick remember most from and take from 2014′s cultural parade? Will we remember this year in a year solely for reports, spats, costs and inventive use of an old dairy?

We’ve gathered a panel of local artists and activists to join us at Banter to discuss all of the above (and more besides) and we will hopefully not mention the legacy word all that much.

The panel: Mike Fitzpatrick (director Limerick City of Culture 2014 and previously Head of Limerick School of Art and Design, a director of EVA International and  director and curator of Limerick City Gallery of Art), Monica Spencer (board member of the Arts Council, actor, director and youth drama facilitator with the new Creative Communities Limerick Network), Catherine O’Halloran (Senior Youth Worker,  leading light behind the Draw Out Project and board member of the Make a Move Festival) and Michael Finneran (head of the Department of Arts Education & Physical Education in Mary Immaculate Collegefounder member of Bare Space Theatre Company and one of those behind the establishment of Limerick’s newest professional performing arts venue the Lime Tree Theatre).

Banter presents Limerick City of Culture 2015 takes place at the Shannon Rowing Club (Shannon Bridge) on Friday July 4 at 7.30pm. Admission is free. Big thanks to Shane Curtain and Jennifer Moroney Ward for their help in putting this together. 

Make A Move takes place in various venues across Limerick from July 3 to 6. See website for full information.

A conversation about Frank (081, May 2014)

It’s a Frank special. A few weeks ago, Banter was packed to the rafters for the visit of Jon Ronson who talked at great length about Frank Sidebottom and the true story which inspired the forthcoming Frank film.

This time around, we’re delighted to welcome the film’s director Lenny Abrahamson, actor Domhnall Gleeson and music composer Stephen Rennicks to Banter on Thursday May 1 to talk about all things Frank.

113233.28629616_900

Lenny Abrahamson, who has form when it comes to Banter, has previously directed such magnificent flicks as Adam and Paul, Garage and What Richard Did.

Domhnall Gleeson, who appears in Frank as wannabe Jon Burroughs who finds himself out of his depth when he joins an avant-garde pop band led by the enigmatic Frank, has previously appeared in About Time, Anna Karenina, Calvary, Sensation, True Grit and many other films.

Stephen Rennicks is the Dublin-based composer whose compositions for feature films include The Stag, The Pipe, Happy Ever Afters, Eden and work on all of Lenny Abrahamson’s films to date.

The credits: Banter’s conversation about Frank takes place at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1) on Thursday May 1. Doors open 6pm and the conversation gets underway at 6.30pm sharp. Tickets can be obtained here

A conversation about Frank is brought to you in association with Element Pictures. Frank opens in cinemas on May 9

Living for the City: Covering the city (080, Apr 2014)

Banter’s Living for the City series on living, working and playing in Dublin in the 21st century continues to motor along. We’ve had discussions to date on cycling in the cityalternative spacesimmigrationhousing and homelessness and we still haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of stuff around and about Dublin that we want to discuss.

Our latest excursion into capital city issues is Covering the City, a look at media in the city as part of The Beatyard festival.

Albert_Kish_Newspaper_Stand_King_Street_1965_377_55

Covering the City will look at how various media – new, old, online and offline – cover what’s going on in the city. We’ll examine what the panel feels is of interest to Dubliners about the place they call home. And we’ll talk some about the other stuff which should be covered and why.

The panel: Ian Lamont (editor, Totally Dublin), Kate Coleman (editor, Le Cool Dublin), Niall Harbison (Lovin Dublin) and James Reddy (Rabble)

The small print: Covering the City takes place at the Twisted Pepper on Wednesday April 30. Doors open 6pm, the Bantering gets underway at 6.30pm and admission is free, but you need to sign-up to the invite list in dvance.

Banter at Cúirt 2014 (079, Apr 2014)

More announcements from the Banter universe to join last week’s flurry about our conversations with Jon Ronson and Ben Watt (both of which are nearly sold out) and our discussion on Irish identity at the St Patrick’s Day Festival.

We’ve one more Banter-related announcement to come this week, but today is all about our first visit to the Cúirt International Festival of Literature in Galway in April.

Banter will be hosting three events in all on Saturday April 12

Coffee and Cronuts with Sam Lipsyte: an interview with one of America’s best and funniest fiction writers. Have a coffee, enjoy a cronut and hear what Sam has to say about the art of sardonic writing (and cronuts). Busker Brownes, 11am, admission €8

The Music Book Club: what do musicians read? Who are their favourite writers? What effect, if any, do those writers have on their songs and music. Join us for some book chat with special guests Adrian CrowleyNíal Conlon from Delorentos and Maria Doyle KennedyRoisin Dubh, 3pm, €8

Facts about fiction with Rhianna Pratchett. An award-winning scriptwriter, story designer and general narrative paramedic, Rhianna has worked on such titles as Tomb Raider, Heavenly Sword, Overlord, Bioshock Infinite and Mirror’s Edge, as well as a plethora of screenplays and comics. She joins us to talk about the nuts and bolts of how to tell stories in games, develop a narrative and collaborate with a team. An Taibhdhearc, 5pm €8

You can find full details of the rest of the Cúirt programme – including Hugo Hamilton, Sebastian Barry, Roddy Doyle, Kathleen McMahon, Anakana Schofield, Colin Barrett, Patrick deWitt, recent Banter guests Donal Ryan and Eimear McBride and many, many more – here

An evening with Damian Barr (077, Apr 2014)

We’re as pleased as punch to welcome Damian Barr to Banter for a special evening about his book Maggie & Me. Damian is the latest literary prize-winner to join Donal Ryan and Eimear McBride in the Banter Hall of Fame, as Maggie & Me was voted political humour and satire book of the year at the Political Book Awards in London earlier this week. The critical praise for Maggie & Me has been loud and lavish too since its publication.

8dbff3b1c3912d2b083f63d1a867caf2_1

Maggie & Me is the touching and darkly witty memoir about a yongster surviving Thatcher’s Britain; a story of growing up gay in a straight world and coming out the other side in spite of, and maybe because of, the iron lady. It’s a tale of a family divided by sectarian suspicion in a community held together by a sprawling steelworks. As Maggie snatches school milk, smashes the unions and makes greed good, our hero works hard, plans his escape and – in spite of violence, strikes, AIDS and Clause 28 – manages to fall in love dancing to Madonna in Glasgow’s only gay club.

Aside from Maggie & Me, Damian has been a journalist for over ten years writing mostly for The Times, but also the Independent, Telegraph, Financial Times, Guardian, Evening Standard and Granta. He is the author of Get It Together: A Guide to Surviving Your Quarterlife Crisis and has co-written two plays for BBC Radio 4. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Faculty at the School of Life, host of the infamous Literary Salon at Shoreditch House and was named Writer of the Year at the 2013 Stonewall Awards.

An evening with Damian Barr takes place at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St.,) Dublin 1 on Wednesday April 2. Doors open at 6pm-ish and the conversation with Damian gets underway at 6.30pm. Admission is free and you can sign up to the limited invite list here.

A conversation with Dawn O’Porter (078, Apr 2014)

Banter’s ongoing series on conversations with authors has seen us welcome the likes of Jon RonsonBen Watt and Alan McGee into the tent in recent times, while we also look forward to our visit to the Cúirt festival in Galway next month for a day of book-related talks.

Next month, we also present a conversation with writer, TV presenter and columnist Dawn O’Porter. She’ll be here to talk about her new book for young adults Goose, the follow-up to last year’s well-received debut novel Paper Aeroplanes.

1-Dawn-1024x678

 

Aside from these books, Dawn is also the editor of The Booby Trap And Other Bits And Boobs (a compilation of stories by well-known people in aid of breast cancer charities), the presenter of a rake of TV shows about all sorts of things from polygamy to the movie Dirty Dancing for the BBC, Channel 4, ITV, Sky and FIVE in the UK, and WE TV and TLC in the US – her next appearance will be on This Old Thing, a Channel 4 series on vintage clothes (and there’s a book to go with it) – and a columnist for Glamour magazine.

Paper-Aeroplanes-and-Goose

 

We’re delighted to welcome Dawn to Banter for a conversation to be conducted by author and journalist Anna Carey.

Date, time and venue: it all takes place on Saturday April 5 at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1). Doors open at 6.30pm and the interview kicks off at 7pm sharp. Admission is free and you can sign up to the limited invite list here.

The Back Page

The Back Page is a new festival of talking about sports. Brought to you by the people behind Banter and Bodytonic Music, it will feature all kinds of sports people talking about all kinds of sports. For our first outing, we have swimmers, athletes, football managers, snooker champs, rugby players and those who write about and talk about all of the above.

Full day by day programme below. Tickets for each session are now on sale here, including a special season ticket which will get you into every talk over the weekend.

THURSDAY MARCH 27

6.30pm Stage – Brian Kerr on the art of the gaffer

As well as being an astute and sharp pundit, Brian Kerr has been an international manager (Republic Of Ireland, Faroe Islands) and a club manager (St Patrick’s Athletic) so he knows all about controlling, directing and guiding the team from the sideline. The Back Page will quiz him about what it takes to be a manager, what makes a good – and bad – manager and who he rates in the game. Anyone who caught Brian in full flow at Banter a while ago will know to expect some witty, insightful and super-sharp thoughts.

8.00pm Stage – Go Deep with Steve Redmond

The endurance swimmer comes out of the water to talk (and talk). A former rugby player and triathlete, Steve is best known for successfully completing the Oceans Seven challenge, which entails swimming seven of the most difficult straits or channels across the globe, and was voted 2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year. The Back Page will ask him about what he does and, more importantly, what drives him on to do more.

FRIDAY MARCH 28

6.30pm Stage – War Stories

Vincent Hogan (Irish Independent), Shane McGrath (Irish Daily Mail chief sportswriter) and Clare McNamara (RTE) compare scars and tall tales from life in the trenches writing and talking about sports. Chaired by Michael Moynihan (author of “GAAconomics” and sports writer with The Irish Examiner). Flak jackets and helmets available at the door.

6.30pm Basement – Online with Paddy Power

Michael Nagle from Paddy Power on how social media helped to turn a small Irish bookmaking set-up into a worldwide operation. We’ll hear about how the company has used social media to push their profile and build the brand, the ups and downs of this strategy, the way in which social media has changed the market, what’s the future for sports – and sportspeople – online and if our favourite athletes will continue to use Twitter to act the eejit

8.00pm Stage – A conversation with Ken Doherty

The don of the green baize talks sport as we join him on the road from Jason’s in Ranelagh to world snooker champion and well-regarded broadcaster with Sunshine FM

8.00pm Basement – A rough ride in Rwanda

Writer with The Observer, Tim Lewis is also the author of “Land of Second Chances: The Impossible Rise of Rwanda’s Cycling Team”, an incredible book about how the Rwandan cycling team overcame impossible odds to inspire a country which had been torn apart by the 1994 genocide. In conversation with Gavin Cummiskey from The Irish Times

SATURDAY MARCH 29

6.30pm Stage – GAAconomics

We all know – or think, anyway – that the GAA is loaded, but where exactly is the money and where does it come from? One of the best sports books of 2013 was“GAAconomics” by Irish Examiner journalist Michael Moynihan who set out on the trail on the money in the our national games. He joins us at The Back Page to uncover the money trail from the training pitch of your local club to the plush surrounds of GAA HQ in Croke Park. In conversation with Mick O’Keeffe

6.30pm Basement – The Summit

Nick Ryan is the director of The Summit, the powerful, magnetic and riveting documentary about what happened on the K2 expedition in 2008 which led to the deaths of 11 climbers who had successfully made their way to the top. It’s a compelling look at why people take this challenge on the peak which straddles the Himalayas between Pakistan and China – and the terrible, often fatal dangers even for the most experienced climbers

 

8.00pm Stage – The Anti Room on the gender politics of sport

fiona-coughlan_a_2119340i

Be it Premiership football, golf, rubgy or Formula 1, there is an on ongoing disparity between attitudes to, and coverage of, male and female sports. Sportswomen and commentators – Irish women’s rugy team captain Fiona Coghlan and writer, broadcaster and sports fan Elaine Buckley – join Sinead Gleeson to discuss sports, gender and the issues which women athletes face.

8pm Basement – Just A Bit of Banter Banter

Eamon Zayed (Shamrock Rovers and Libya), Dermot Keely (former player and manager, current newspaper columnist with The Irish Sun) and Ed Randolph (US born former basketball pro and coach now living in Dublin) recall tales of racism and sectarianism, on and off the field of play, discuss what needs to be done to deal with them in sport and how sport can, in the wider world, help to tackle them. Presented in association with Show Racism the Red Card and chaired by Emmet Malone from The Irish Times

Banter on Irish identity: past, present and future (074, Mar 2014)

Continuing a busy week of Banter announcements, we’re delighted to announce a special panel as part of this year’s St Patrick’s Day Festival.

The question of Irish identity is one which seems particularly apt around about now, as the national holiday approaches and we prepare for a few years of centenary commemorations and celebrations. But what does it mean to be Irish in 2014? Does it even matter? Does our past identity inform our future one? Or should it? What about the new wave of Irish emigrants? This Banter event will delve into questions of Irishness and unearth where our collective identity is at – or at least start the conversation.

flag15n-1-web

The panel: Sinead Gleeson (Irish Times/The Book Show), Denise Charlton (Immigrant Council of Ireland), Colm O’Gorman (author, activist, director of Amnesty International Ireland and founder of One in Four) and Paddy Cullivan (The Camembert Quartet,  Leviathan and Callan’s Kicks). This Banter will be chaired by Una Mullally.

For this one, we’re moving to the Grand Lodge of the Freemason’s Hall (17 Molesworth St., Dublin 2) on Saturday March 15 at 4pm. Admission is free but advance registration is required.

Thanks to Susanna Lagan at the St Patrick’s Day Festival for the invitation to take part.

A conversation with Ben Watt (075, Mar 2014)

Musician, singer, songwriter, author and DJ, Ben Watt is a man with a long and chequered musical history. One half of Everything But the Girl, the founder of the Buzzin’ Fly and Strange Feeling labels, the man behind the Lazy Dog, Neighbourhood and Cherry Jam club nights and venues and a regular DJ on BBC 6 Music, Ben recently returned to the solo career he parked back in 1983 when EBTG came along. His new album “Hendra” will be released on his new Unmade Road label next month.

Ben-Watt-by-Edward-Bishop-IMG_5622-Colour

He has also found the time to pen two fine books. Published in 1996, his autobiographical memoir “Patient – the True Story of a Rare Illness” told the story of his extraordinary life and death battle with a rare auto-immune disease Churg-Strauss Syndrome (aka Eosinophilic Polyangiitis) four years earlier, during which he was hospitalised for nine weeks, endured several life-saving operations, and lost 80 per cent of his small intestine.

His new book is called “Romany & Tom” and it’s a portrait of his parents, a vivid story of the post-war years, ambition and stardom, and family roots and secrets.

rom-and-tom-jacket-400px-72dpi

Having made his Banter debut in London last year, we’re delighted to welcome him to Dublin for an interview, to be conducted by Sinead Gleeson, presenter of RTE Radio One’s The Book Show, about the new book and his career to date.

Date, time and venue: it all takes place on Tuesday March 18 at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1). Doors open at 6pm and the interview kicks off at 6.30pm sharp. Admission is free and you can sign up to the limited invite list here.

 

 

A conversation with Jon Ronson (076, Mar 2014)

It gives us great pleasure to welcome journalist, documentary maker, humorist and author Jon Ronson to Banter. Between books like Them: Adventures With Extremists and The Men Who Stare At Goats to great documentaries like Dr Paisley, I Presume and Crazy Rulers of the World, we’ve long been fans and admirers of his work.

Jon will be joining us on Thursday March 20 to talk about “Frank”, his forthcoming e-book on the extraordinary Frank Sidebottom and the true story which inspired the forthcoming movie of the same name by Lenny Abrahamson which stars Michael Fassbender, Domhnall Gleeson and Maggie Gyllenhaal.

For a taster of what to expect from the book, have a read of this beautiful piece by Jon about Frank’s creator Chris Sievey, which ran in The Guardian a few months ago.

9781447271376

The Banter conversation with Jon Ronson takes place at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1) on Thursday March 20. Doors open at 6pm and the talking starts at 6.30pm-ish. Admission is free but limited and you need to sign up to the invite list here. [Please note that the invite list is now closed]

Living for the City: alternative spaces (073, Feb 2014)

We’d another full house at Banter last night as we welcomed Peter McVerry for a conversation about his life and work. It was an engrossing evening, helped hugely by the righteous conviction and fortrightness of the man answering the questions. Many thanks to Peter for his time – and to the audience for their attention and great questions.

That conversation was part of our ongoing Living for the City series which really seems to have struck a chord. To date, we’ve also talked about bikesgaffs and the new Dubliners.

Our fifth outing will be about alternative spaces around the city. In recent times, we’ve seen a huge growth in new venues and creative spaces in and around the city which have provided audiences with something other than the norm when it came to entertainment.

We’ve gathered together a number of people who are involved in these new initiatives to talk about how these spaces have come about, what they offer to creative projects, what’s the long-run prognosis for these venues, the role of NAMA and Dublin City Council and what advice they’d offer to those seeking to do their own alternatives.

Our panel:  Orlaith Ross (The Crypt), Laura G Dovn (Block T), Peter O’Brien (Upstart) and Ciara Scanlan (MART)

The Crypt at Christ Church Cathedral

Block T

Granby Park

 

SM_0018_0170_web-530x350

MART, Dublin

The details: Twisted Pepper, Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1; Wednesday February 26; doors open 6pm and the talking starts at 6.30pm; discussion followed by audience Q&A; admission is free but you need to sign up to the invite list here.

Bantercasts: we’re now in the podcasting business with new episodes from our previous adventures in talking every week. You can catch up on the broadcasts to datehere or subscribe via the iTunes store or, for Android users, this link. Big thanks to Bantercast producer Tanya White for Old Hat for all her work on this and to Garret HynesKiwi Horgan and Ken McGuire for their recording aid and assistance.

Banter at Other Voices, Derry (072, Feb 2014)

We really should be playing “The Town I Loved So Well” at this juncture. Banter travels the rocky road to Derry next weekend for our third outing in the city in the last 12 months and our second visit with Other Voices.

It’s actually our fifth hook-up with the good folks at Other Voices in all – we’ve already been with them in DingleDerryLondon and Dingle again – and it’s mighty good to be able to bring the Banter show on the road like this every couple of months.

We have an action-packed line-up of guests for Derry and here we go with the day-by-day line-up and venue details. Admission to all Banter at Other Voices events is free, but capacity is limited so it’s first come, first served. We’ll also be raffling tickets for the main Other Voices’ concert at our events Saturday and Sunday so if you’re after a ticket, we may be able to help.

Thursday – Nerve Centre, Magazine St. – 8pm

Annie Mac – the BBC Radio One queenpin joins us for a chat about life on the radio. She’ll be playing a late-night gig at Sandino’s but before she brings the rave, Annie will be talking about this, that and the other.

Annie Mac

Annie Mac

Saturday – The Cottage, Craft Village, Shipquay St. – 2-6pm)

Conor Masterson – the director of In the Deep Shade, the acclaimed documentary on Irish musicians The Frames, on his relationship with the band and catching the skin and bones of the band’s 20 year-plus career on the big screen. Conor’s film will be screening at The Nerve Centre at 5.30pm as part of the OneTwoOneTwo music documentary festival’s trip to Other Voices.

The Love/Hate Story – it’s been one of the biggest Irish TV hits of recent years and as we prepare for the fifth season, director David Caffrey joins us for the ballad of Nidge, John Boy, Fran, Tommy, Siobhan, Trish and Elmo

Michael Hann on the art of the interview – what does it take to get a great interview out of someone? Is there anything that can be done to save an interview when it goes off the tracks? Should some interviewees be told in advance that they can always say no? Is Noel Gallagher really the best value interviewee in rock? Michael Hann, The Guardian’s music editor and a man who knows his way around good and bad interviews, talks about what happens when you press record

Guardian music editor Michael Hann

Guardian music editor Michael Hann

Musical performances on the day from Colm Mac Con Iomaire and Eve Murtagh.

Colm Mac Con Iomaire

Eve Murtagh. Photo: Kieran Frost

Sunday – The Cottage, Craft Village, Shipquay St. – 2-4.30pm

Lloyd Bradley – a highly-regarded British writer on black music from funk to reggae, Lloyd is the author of the compelling history of reggae “Bass Culture” and, more recently, the compelling “Sounds Like London”, a book at looks at how immigrants have shaped black music in the city over the last 100 years.

Lloyd Bradley

Paul Duane – the film-maker behind hit TV series Amber and such fantastic dodcumentaries as Barbaric Genius (on London-Irish writer John Healy), Natan (profiling revolutionary Franco-Romanian director Bernard Natan) and Very Extremely Dangerous (focusing on musician, robber, cancer patient and all-round badass Jerry McGill) talks about his work to date – and life after getting listed by Variety magazine as one of their 10 Directors to Watch in 2014

Paul Duane

Paul Duane

We will also have a live set from Sive today.

Sive

Sunday – Nerve Centre, Magazine St. – 5pm sharp

Martin Hayes – we bring our weekend of Banter to a close with a conversation with the master fiddler from Feakle, Co Clare and a founder member of The Gloaming, a group who are proving to be one of the greatest Irish acts of their generation. Banter’s conversation with Martin Hayes will precede of a screening of the Moment to Moment documentary on The Gloaming as part of OneTwoOneTwo at Other Voices.

MartinHayes

 

Full information on all Other Voices’ activities in Derry over the weekend, from the performances in the Glassworks and such new initiatives as Local Voices and Outer Voices to the music trail to OneTwoOneTwo, here.

A conversation with Peter McVerry (071, Jan 2014)

Time for the fourth installment in Living for the City, Banter’s autumn/winter series of talks about living, working and playing in the capital city. After indepth looks at bikesgaffs and the new Dubliners, we welcome Fr Peter McVerry to Banter for an indepth conversation on his life and work.

Peter-McVerry

The latest freeman of Dublin has been working with Dublin’s young homeless for more than 30 years. During this time he has campaigned tirelessly for the rights of these young people. In 1979, Fr McVerry opened a hostel to address the urgent need for accommodation for young homeless people. Four years later, he set up a charity called The Arrupe Society, to provide further housing and support.

Renamed in 2005 as Peter McVerry Trust, the charity has progressed from providing a three bedroom flat in Ballymun to today’s wide range of services catering for the diverse needs of young homeless people. Some services include an open access service, supported accommodation, drug services, under 18s hostels and apartments across the city to offer longer-term housing for those ready to live independently.

The details: a conversation with Peter McVerry will take on Wednesday January 29 at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1). Doors open at 6pm and the interview begins at 6.30pm. Admission is free and you just need to sign in advance to the invite list here.

Banter at First Fortnight: Over the Bar (070, Jan 2014)

It gives us great pleasure to start 2014 in the company of the First Fortnight festival. Since 2009, First Fortnight have been talking about and examining mental health through the creative arts. They’ve put together a fascinating programme of visual art, film, music, spoken word, theatre and discussions for their 2014 run.

Our contribution to the festival is Over the Bar, a panel looking at how sports teams and individual athletes deal with the issue of mental health.

Given that sportsmen are exposed to win-at-all-costs pressure from a young age, there is a growing need for all codes to address how mental health issues are responded to and whether the culture around sport is conducive to promoting a tolerant response to those experiencing difficulty. The discussion will look at the many issues around mental health in sport and what teams, clubs, organisations and managers should be doing to help, both during and after a player’s career, especially given the reticence by men in particular to speak about these issues.

The panel: Richie Sadlier (formerly irish professional football player and CEO St Patrick’s Athletic and currently pundit for RTE Sports and Second Captains and Sunday Independent columnist), David Gillick (athlete – 400 metres gold medal winner at 2005 and 2007 European Indoor Championships) and Liam Moggan (Coaching Ireland).

Former Irish footballer Richie Sadlier

Former Irish footballer Richie Sadlier

 

Irish athlete David Gillick

Irish athlete David Gillick

 

Banter: Over the Bar takes place on Tuesday January 7 at the Twisted Pepper (Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1) and tickets for the event are on sale here at €5 each.

Banter Review of the Year (069, Dec 2013)

If we were simply talking about the review of the Banter year, there would certainly be lots to talk about. This was the year of peak Banter, 27 events and counting as we roamed from Cork to DerryKinsale to Londonthe Burren to Belfast and Dingle to our spiritual home at the Twisted Pepper in Dublin, where it all began.

We talked about everything from craft beers and Bruce Springsteen to bikes and farming. We had fascinating conversations with people like Alan McGeePeter HookDr Steve MyersMaeve O’RourkePaul MorleyMary FitzgeraldNeil Hannon and tons more. 2013 was a blast – and we’ve some amazing stuff already in the pipeline for 2014.

As has become the norm at Banter (and we did this in 200920102011 and 2012), we end the year with the review of the year. It’s always a splendid night out as our panel run the rule over the events, news stories, heroes and villians of the last 12 months.

Our panel for the review which will probably cover everything from horseburgers and the Anglo tapes to Martin O’Neill, the Clare hurlers and the selfie: Aine Lawlor (presenter of RTE Radio One’s News At One, RTE TV’s The Week In Politics and Facing Cancer), Alison Curtis (Today FM DJ and producer), Paddy Cosgrave (Web Summit, F.ounders) and Ciaran Walsh (managing editor Le Cool Dublin and co-founder Sweatshop).

Aine-Lawlor

RTE’s Aine Lawlor

Date, time and venue: Monday December 16, 6.30pm (doors open 6pm), Twisted Pepper, Middle Abbey St., Dublin 1.

Admission is free, but you must sign up in advance to our guestlist here.

PLEASE NOTE: the invite list for this event is now full. Additional spaces may become available nearer the date so check back for more information.