Singer-Songwriter Declan O’Rourke to Perform at Famine Summer School

Singer-Songwriter Declan O’Rourke to Perform at Famine Summer School

The Irish Famine Summer School takes place at Strokestown Park, Roscommon from Wednesday 20th to Sunday 24th June and promises to be a fascinating mix of talks, performances and film screenings, offering something for anyone with an interest in Irish history, particularly the Great Famine.

Singer-songwriter Declan O’Rourke will perform songs from his latest album “Chronicles of the Great Famine” at 7.30pm on Friday 22nd June and also be in conversation with Professor Christine Kinealy of Quinnipiac University, Connecticut. All are welcome to this performance. (€5.00 admission at the door).

The 2018 Famine Summer School will be launched by the Canadian Ambassador to Ireland on Wednesday 20th June. This year’s theme is “Irish Journeys: Famine Legacies and Reconnecting Communities” and the programme promises to be a really engaging exploration of the Great Famine and its impact on later movements for social and political change. International speakers from Quinnipiac University, the University of Toronto, Boston College and Notre Dame will be giving keynote papers and mingling with local historians who likewise hold a depth of local expertise. Strokestown Park House and the National Famine Museum provide a hub for visitors and scholars to experience a uniquely preserved historic house and explore the lives of rich and poor in their original setting.

“Strokestown Park has been recognised for its ground-breaking work in delving into the deep complexities of the Irish Famine,” said Caroilin Callery of Strokestown Park. “We are honoured to be welcoming descendants of Edward Neary from the Mahon Estate at this year’s Summer School. Jennifer Robinson will travel to Ireland for the first time and has a moving and harrowing story of Neary’s family who emigrated from Elphin in “Black ’47”. This story is now coming alive thanks to the ongoing Great Famine Voices Roadshow in the US and Canada,w here we have been collecting stories and bringing together Irish emigrants and descendants from the Great Famine of Ireland,” she continued.  A selection of these family memories and stories will be made freely available on the Great Famine Voices online archive www.greatfaminevoices.ie

At 4pm on Thursday 21st June, there will be a Performance by Syrian Refugee from Ballaghaderreen, devised by author Jessamine O’Connor. “Roscommon Connects: Community Building through Shared Storytelling” is a follow up to the visit of the Syrian Refugees who visited Strokestown Park in 2017 to hear the Strokestown Famine Emigrant Story.

“Every year the Summer School goes from strength to strength in terms of the international and local scholars that it attracts and the research that is presented,” said Christine Kinealy, Director, Ireland’s Great Hunger Institute at Quinnipiac University, Connecticut. “We are delighted to continue to partner with the Irish Heritage Trust in helping to host this biennial event and to launch the proceeds of last year’s conference – Children and the Great Hunger – edited by Christine Kinealy, Jason King and Gerard Moran, with a Foreword by Marita Conlon-McKenna,” she continued.

To see the full programme, please click here.To make a booking, (booking options very flexible) please book here or contact Strokestown Park by telephoning 353 (0)71 963 3013  / email: info@strokestownpark.ie  / www.strokestownpark.ie