Maggie Gyllenhaal and Irish theatrical event RIOT among Irish Arts Center presented shows in 2018

The Irish Arts Center (IAC), which will break ground on its new state of the art facility on the West Side next year, has received a grant of $250,000 from the Howard Gilman Foundation, one of New York City’s foremost funders of performing arts organizations, including Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center Theater, Brooklyn Academy of Music, and Park Avenue Armory. The grant supports IAC with financing costs for the new center. 

Last week the IAC also announced its spring 2018 lineup, featuring a wide range of theatrical, musical, dance, literary, podcast, interdisciplinary and educational events.  

Among the highlights is the U.S. premiere of RIOT, a theatrical event that is also an evening of spoken word, circus, drag and delectable trash culture, co-presented with NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts on February 15-17 at the Skirball Center.  It comes to the U.S. as part of a world tour, after having won Best Production at last year’s Dublin Fringe Festival. 

IAC’s concert series, Masters in Collaboration, which brings together two artists to fuse their musical proclivities, influences and repertoires, welcomes collaborators Rhiannon Giddens and Dirk Powell (February 9-11). The two already have a rich history of working together, and are set to reunite at IAC for a week to develop new music, continuing to pair their knowledge of a variety of musical traditions, from Appalachian to Creole/Cajun to Celtic to gospel sounds. 

An IAC 2017 co-commission, Olagón, a Cantata in Doublespeak, a musical work that looks at contemporary, post-Recession Ireland through a retelling of the myth of Olagóna, bringing together Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Paul Muldoon, fiddler Dan Trueman, vocalist Iarla Ó Lionáird and Grammy-winning contemporary music ensemble Eighth Blackbird, will receive its premiere (February 22-24). Fiddler Dana Lyn and guitarist Kyle Sanna celebrate the launch of their third album, The Coral Suite, sharing their “through the looking glass” approach to traditional Irish music in concert on April 13.

IAC presents two live recordings of Randy Cohen’s interview podcast, Person, Place, Thing, which takes as its central idea the notion that people are particularly engaging when they speak not directly about themselves but about something they care about; the schedule for these recordings will be announced on irishartscenter.org. 

From April 3-June 29, Eoin Francis McCormack’s triptych art, exploring painting as a work ethic, fills IAC’s gallery. 

The spring 2018 season sees the return of Muldoon’s Picnic, the cultural extravaganza led by Paul Muldoon, which brings together music, storytelling, poetry and more, and this season features the talents of The Deuce star Maggie Gyllenhaal, A Super Sad True Love Story author Gary Shteyngart, poet Monica Youn, American Irish punk group the Prodigals and many more (February 12, March 12 and April 9).

The IAC celebrates St. Patrick’s Day with the St. Pat’s for All benefit concert, supporting the inclusive St. Pat's for All Parade, on March 2; IAC’s annual St. Patrick’s Open Day on March 11, welcoming the public to sample a number of classes IAC offers, and celebrating the holiday with authentic music and dance performances, as well as various demonstrations of St. Pat’s traditions; and the eighth annual Irish Arts Center Book Day, on St. Patrick’s day (March 17), honoring storytelling as one of the most vital elements of human history, by handing out thousands of books by Irish authors alongside those from the Caribbean.

IAC’s Irish Language Day (April 8) this year showcases bilingual performances of poetry and song, with Irish language teachers educating participants on the richness of the language and its expression through various art forms.

The IAC’s winter term begins January 22, and spring on April 16.  Visit www.irishartscenter.org.

A rendering of the proposed new Irish Arts Center, in New York City.IAC