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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: February 28, 2013 @ 5:58 pm

    If you only do one thing this weekend … be shocked by the new

    Laurence Mackin

    Aa Here leave it etc and so on: The shock of the new is on offer at the National Concert Hall this weekend, when New Music Dublin takes over the building. It’s an eclectic programme with a number of intriguing offerings, chief among which is Saturday’s concert by the preposterously named A Winged Victory for the Sullen. This is a collaboration between ex-Sparklehorser Adam Wiltzie and composer Dustin O’Halloran that mixes post-rock ambient sounds with more classical influences.

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    Also on Saturday, Arvo Pärt and Louis Andriessen will be attempting to usurp governments, when the RTE Concert Orchestra performs Pärt’s Symphony No 4 – a direct criticism of Russian President Vladimir Putin – and Andriessen’s De Staat – a piece from 1976 that has developed a cult following.

    The Hilliard Ensemble blew my tiny mind with their 2011 concert in St Patrick’s Cathedral with Jan Garbarek, and now they are back, playing a double header with Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson.

    On Sunday evening, Crash Ensemble will be delivering its Europa survey of cutting-edge European music. The programme features works by Simon Steen Andersen (which uses text from Nelson Mandela’s prison diaries), Georg Fredrich Haas (in this piece, the audience sits within the players), Heiner Goebbels (this work is a reconstructed ballet), and Michel Van Der Aa. The latter’s piece is called Here. Anyone heard heckling with an “Aa here, leave it out” will probably get thrown out – but it will be well worth it.

    Pop goes the cello: If that’s not adventurous enough for you how about some Swedish fantasy cello pop? Linnea Olsson is happy to oblige in the Workman’s Club on Saturday night.

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    Theatre of note: The premise of Noteworthy, which runs at TheatreUpstairs at Lanigan’s Bar in Dublin until Saturday, is intriguing. A woman burn’s her deceased brother’s suicide note, some time after it has been read and fixated upon by her family. The oddness creeps in, though, when it becomes apparent that the note is a fake. (In a further unsettling piece of theatricality, the dead brother is on-stage throughout, played by Barry O’Connor.)

    Róisín Coyle’s short play, directed by Janet Moran, is pitched as a dark comedy, and props to the team for tackling an issue that should be right at the top of the agenda in Ireland, cultural or otherwise. Click here for more information, and here for Peter Crawley’s review.

    All the lads: You can always rely on your friends for a helping hand, and guitarist Henry McCullough has more friends than most. A benefit concert for McCullough, who suffered permanent damage after a heart attack in November, takes place in Vicar Street on Sunday, and more than a few of the great and good are showing up to show their support.

    McCullough began his career with The Skyrockets and Gene and The Gents (they don’t make band names like they etc and so on), before touring with the likes of The Animals, Pink Floyd and the Jimi Hendrix Experience. He joined Sweeney’s Men and Joe Cocker’s Grease Band, meaning he was on-stage during that show at Woodstock in 1969.

    McCullough was also in Wings, which just goes to show that nobody’s perfect, but quit in 1973 and then played in numerous solo and group projects.

    Among those on the roster on Sunday are Sweeney’s Men, The Fleadh Cowboys, Christy Moore, Declan Synnott, Mick Flannery, John Spillane, Honor Heffernan, Johnny Duhan, The Ed Deane Band, Jimmy Smith and more. Click here for the necessaries.

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