Jonathan Swift Festival
Honouring Swift on the anniversary of his 350th birthday, the inaugural Jonathan Swift Festival will take place from 23-26 November.
The festival is run by Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin and collaborates with a number of cultural institutions across the city who have a historic or thematic link to Jonathan Swift’s life and work. In 2017 these include; Marsh’s Library, Dublin Castle, Christ Church Cathedral, Trinity College, The Irish Writers Centre and St Patrick’s Mental Health Services.
The festival will celebrate Swift’s legacy as a writer, satirist, poet and Dubliner of note. Animating the area around Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, the festival will be packed with surprising, unique experiences.
Here are just some of the festival’s highlights:
The festival will open in St Patrick’s Park with a live light animation and a visit to the Cathedral for an exclusive opportunity to see the building after hours–and, of course, visit the grave of Swift himself. Later in the evening, there will be a free screening of Words upon the Window Pane, introduced by Jim Sheridan
Following two sold-out shows at Vicar Street in August, Glen Hansard will bring his band to Saint Patrick’s Cathedral as part of the festival. Glen Hansard is known as a creative voice for social change through the arts. Tickets, which are €40, benefit charities working in areas of importance for both Jonathan Swift and Glen Hansard.
Join Paul Howard, multi-award-winning journalist, author, playwright and comedy writer, and the man behind the eternally popular Ross O’Carroll-Kelly series, for a special evening as part of the festival. Paul Howard’s use of Ross O’Carroll-Kelly, a fictional Irish rugby jock, reflects Swift’s own work featuring invented characters to critique the events of his time. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear from one of Ireland’s preeminent satirists and cultural critics on fiction, satire, and Ireland today.
After 300 years, Gulliver’s Travels still has much to teach us about the potential and pitfalls of travel literature. Manchán Magan’s workshop will use Gulliver’s Travels as inspiration to coax writers towards a more focused form of travel writing – transforming the sights, sounds and soul of a journey into engaging prose with a strong message. This workshop will lay out techniques and practises to make one’s writing gripping, relevant and even revelatory.