Scene + Heard: What's going on around the country

FILM TIPS: Star Wars fans and Irish tourist marketers have almost a year to wait for the next instalment, with December 15 looking the most likely release date. 
Scene + Heard: What's going on around the country

Perhaps they can ease their pain with some terrestrial singing and dancing action from La La Land next week. It’s so rare for a film to get such love from critics, but Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone seem to have charmed all round in a lavishly-praised movie directed by Damien Chazelle, who gave us Whiplash last year.

There isn’t much in the way of releases for the weekend ahead, so it’s probably a good time to catch up on some of the biggies that have been put out at a time to catch the holiday crowds and also generate maximum Oscar heat: Rogue One, A Monster Calls, and Silence should all feature on the nominations lists at the end of the month.


While it’s a big season for Hollywood movies, Cork theatre also seems to be coming out fighting for the new year with some impressive productions.

Kevin Barry’s first proper play, Autumn Royal, kicks off at the Everyman on January 30, before touring to Leitrim and Dublin. A darkly comic two-hander set in a home on the northside of Cork, be warned that the seating for the production is on the stage, so there will be fewer tickets available for each night. Get booking.

Another must-see is Corcadorca’s collaboration with Enda Walsh, entitled The Same, which will be staged at Cork Gaol from February 10.

Patrick Bergin is currently filming for his new role in TV3 show Red Rock, but he takes a break from the Dublin studio to return south for one night only in Murder at Shandy Hall at Cork Opera House on February 21.


After a year out of the music business, Ed Sheeran returns to the fold today with a release that he’s been hinting at all week on social media.

The xx are also on the release trail, with new album I See You due next Friday. We’ll have a review on these pages tomorrow. A bunch of tour dates has also been announced for the London group, and fans here will be hoping that the lack of an Irish announcement so far means they’re being lined up for one of the summer festivals.

Meanwhile, anybody worrying about seeing Bon Iver at Kilmainham in June needn’t fret just yet. The group’s recent cancellation of gigs only applies to the immediate round of dates on a tour that was scheduled to finish in London in February. Hopefully, the unspecified “personal issues” behind the cancellation will have abated by the summer.


If you don’t have tickets for the Cork Opera House leg of Glen Hansard’s tribute to the late Interference vocalist Fergus O’Farrell, it looks as if you’ve missed the boat. The February 2 gig is already sold out.

Further down the road, the great John Prine plays the same venue on April 7, with fellow veteran Al Stewart appearing on April 20.

Mark Eitzel is also due to return to Cork, and will play at Cyprus Avenue on February 11.

In Dublin, the David Bowie Festival continues all weekend to mark the first anniversary of his death. Enda Walsh spoke at the Sugar Club last night about his encounters with Bowie for the making of the play, Lazarus, while Irish guitarist Gerry Leonard, who played on three Bowie albums, will offer further anecdotes as part of his gig on Monday.

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