The 2014 Festival Theme has been announced


Friday May 30th – Sunday June 1st 2014

Theme: Pallas, Inniskeen, Mossbawn, the Importance and Significance of Birthplace in Influencing the works of Goldsmith, Kavanagh and Heaney.

The 30th annual festival follows on from the “Gathering” of 2013. This year’s Theme is “A  Sense of Place Pallas, Inniskeen, Mossbawn the Importance and Significance of birthplace in influencing the works of Goldsmith, Kavanagh and Heaney”

On Friday May 1st, under the chairmanship of Festival Chairman Seamus Mc Cormack, the official opening will be performed by Professor Andrew Carpenter Emeritus Professor of English at UCD. A valued friend, Dr Carpenter delivered the keynote speech in Abbeyshrule 30 years ago.

This will be followed by what promises to be witty wise and informative presentation by Larry McCluskey and Art Agnew who have a long association with Kavanaghs Yearly and the annual festival at Inniskeen Co Monaghan This will be followed by the usual lively panel discussion and finally musical entertainment courtesy of the McGoey family at the Rustic Inn..

Saturday’s events commence with the Goldsmith Literary Tour. Beginning in Ballymahon at 11.00 am the tour will visit many of the famous sites associated with Goldsmith including Pallas, Forgney, the Three Jolly Pigeons, the Busy Mill, the Parsonage and Kilkenny West and will include readings from Goldsmiths works.  .

The beautiful Goldsmith room in Ballymahon Library is the venue for the talks on Saturday afternoon. The first speaker will be Dr Fergus O Ferrall  who will speak on “A sense of place”. Then the acclaimed poet and playwright Noel Monahan will explore the idea of  “ A sense of place as an inspiration to the writer ” Both speakers are well known in Goldsmith Country having participated many times over the years  Finally Saturday’s events will be rounded off with the Goldsmith Barbecue an evening of musical entertainment in the famous “Three Jolly Pigeons” pub in Tang, near Athlone.

The Festival culminates on Sunday with the third annual such Goldsmith Miscellany. This has proved a charming addition to the programme.  Chaired by William Dowler and featuring a number of short talks interspersed with music and poetry this will also take place in the congenial surroundings of the Goldsmith Room.

The final event for 2014 take place as usual at Goldsmith’s birthplace, Pallas, with the results of the children’s and adults’ poetry competitions organised under the aegis of the festival and adjudicated upon by poet Noel Monahan. The Longford native has published six collections of poetry and has won many awards. Joe and Chris Farrell of Pallas once again host the annual cheese and wine reception with lots of age appropriate food and drink for the younger poets. Chaired by Anne Tully of the Festival Committee the poetry competitions have received an extremely high quality entry from all over Ireland while the Children’s poetry competition will once again feature poetry from the children of primary schools in Goldsmith Country. This event is kindly sponsored by Anthony O Haire Transport and Ballymahon Credit Union.

For this charming outdoor poetry reading we once again welcome a valued friend.  Des Egan read at the inaugural event at Pallas three decades ago. In the intervening years Des Egan’s poetry has been translated into several languages and he has received many awards. Appropriate musical accompaniment will be provided by Gerry Bohan and friends

The Goldsmith International Literary Festival has a very full and exciting programme of events and the hard working committee are looking forward to welcoming old friends and new to Goldsmith Country