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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: March 22, 2012 @ 6:11 pm

    If you only do one thing this weekend . . . take in a tiny piece of theatre

    Laurence Mackin

    Theatre: A small tiny idea has blossomed into a very impressive artistic body of work – last year Fishamble Theatre and The Irish Times asked the public to send in their tiny plays, of no more than 600 words each, and you responded in your thousands. This week, the Project Arts Centre began staging the first of two tranches of these glittering pieces of tiny drama. Included in the programme are works by Dermot Bolger, Michael Cussen, Colin Murphy, Rory Nolan, Joseph O’Connor, Ardal O’Hanlon and many more. The cast is made up of Steve Blount, Peter Daly, Robert Donnelly, Mary Murray, Kate Stanley Brennan and Don Wycherley, and the production team is impressive to boot, with Jim Culleton directing, Gavin Kostick on dramaturgy duties, and sets by Sabine Dargent, and many others involved. Initial reviews have been strong to say the least – you can read Peter Crawley’s verdict here.

    Watch: Last week I had the singular pleasure of sitting in a darkened theatre and watching almost nothing happen on screen. In Turkish. Once Upon a Time in Anatolia is allegedly a crime drama, but those expecting something akin to Gomorrah (look, I knew nothing about the film and went to see it based on one picture I saw – the one above) will be very surprised. This is a film filled with giant, ancient landscapes, shot largely at night in the Turkish countryside, as a team of police and investigators tour around with a murder suspect who is struggling to remember where he left the body. The script is boiled down to raw bleached bone, the photography is breathtaking and while it’s 2 hours and 20 odd minutes certainly don’t fly by, this is one of the most satisfying film experience you will have this year. You can read Donald Clarke’s review here if you won’t take my word for it.

    Jazz: Flamenco jazz guitarist Eduardo Niebla is currently on an Irish tour, with Matthew Robinson lending a hand, and he plays the Triskel Arts Centre in Cork on Friday, before heading to Meath on Saturday, Wicklow on Sunday and then heading south and west later in the week. Expect virtuoso playing at speeds that are difficult to comprehend. For those of you with shallower pockets, you can continue to take advantage of the selection of free jazz gigs that seem to be countrywide at the moment. Mike Nielsen is leading a quartet in the Jazz Cave in KC Peaches, Dawson Street, Dublin on Saturday, while Cormac O’Brien and a crack team of Sean Carpio, Myles Drennan and John Moriarty are in the Central Hotel’s Library bar on Sunday afternoon. Hargadon’s in Sligo has its regular session with Anything Goes on Friday, while on Sunday afternoon the Jazz Lads are at the Harp Tavern. Just remember to put something in the hat when it’s doing the rounds.

    Dance: It’s been a strong few weeks for dance shows in Ireland, and the Russian State Ballet will be continuing things in style with Swan Lake at the Bord Gais Energy theatre, with star soloists from the Bolshoi and Mariinsky, and RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra on pit duties. Meanwhile in Sligo, the Fidget Feet Aerial Dance company (is this the best name ever?) will be turning the poetry of WB Yeats into a new work fusing aerialism, traditional music, rap and Irish dancing. The Second Coming is at the Hawk’s Well Theatre on Monday and it’s free.

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