Zhu Xiao-Mei survived the rigours of China’s Cultural Revolution. She makes no secret of how severely scarred she was by it. Photograph: Martin Jehnichen/Accentus Music

Kilkenny likes Bach. At the close of this year’s Kilkenny Arts Festival, where the musical focus gave the music of Bach the largest, most concentra(...)

Architects of Air’s Mirazozo. Photograph: Jason Nakrani

  1 Be prepared Punters queuing to get in to the opening concert at Kilkenny were somewhat disconcerted by the sight of an army lorry (...)

Leon Walsh Vaughan, Kemal Souleyman and Zach Bay Hammond watch Kojak perform at the Caravan Club Extravaganza as part of the AKA in Kilkenny over the weekend. Photograph: Dylan Vaughan

A couple of days at the Kilkenny Arts Festival can be akin to a close encounter with mind-altering substances. Want to change the way you see t(...)

Portrait and landscape artist Mick O’Dea (centre) joined by some of the people he will paint for an evolving Kilkenny Arts Festival series, including (from left) actor Aisling O’Sullivan, Druid director Garry Hynes, actor  Derbhle Crotty  and Kilkenny Arts Festival director Eugene Downes. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

The Kilkenny Arts Festival renews its classical focus in a new programme revealed today by festival director Eugene Downes. Dominated by the world’s l(...)

Pianist Barry Douglas’s gutsy playing was often an edge-of-the-seat experience

It was like old times at Kilkenny Arts Festival. The new director, Eugene Downes, put classical music right back at the heart of this year’s festiv(...)

Clockwise from far left, a work from ‘Circle in the Square’ by Marilyn Lerner; Cloud Tyvek by Max Streicher at St Mary’s; O by Karen Donnellan; and Róisín de Buitléar’s blown-glass musical instruments

Eugene Downes’s first year as director took the Kilkenny Arts Festival back to its musical roots. The scale and ambition of the programme would hav(...)

The Basiani Ensemble from Georgia singing in the rain outside Kilkenny Castle yesterday to mark the opening day of the Kilkenny Arts Festival. Photograph: Pat Moore

Clowns on the Parade. Clouds inside St Mary’s Chapel. Bold geometric shapes at the Butler and softly resonating glass sculptures at the National Craft(...)

Shara Worden, aka My Brightest Diamond, who will be taking part in this year’s Kilkenny Arts Festival, which begins on August 8th

Secret concerts, artists-in-residence, a grand ensemble finale and surprise guests are all in store for this year’s Kilkenny Arts Festival (KAF), whi(...)

The Gloaming will perform at St Canice’s Cathedral in August

Eugene Downes knows something about journeys. He has made countless trips in a career built on advancing Irish arts worldwide. As a former chie(...)

Actor John Kavanagh at  the funeral of Susan Fitzgerald  at the Church of The Three Patrons, Rathgar, Dublin, Dublin. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

The actor Susan Fitzgerald, who died last Monday, had no fear of dying and had sympathised with the doctor who had to tell her she had little time lef(...)