28 Sept 2022

Tipperary author Donal Ryan meets Jane Austen at "real time" Dromineer Nenagh Literary Festival

Tipperary author Donal Ryan meets Jane Austen at "real time" Dromineer Nenagh Literary Festival

Author Donal Ryan: will appear alongside Decadent Theatre when he reads form his work at Nenagh Arts Centre this Friday

Tipperary literature lovers are in for a treat this weekend as one of the country's only "real time" festivals takes place in Nenagh.

The Dromineer Nenagh Literary Festival is due to kick off in Nenagh Arts Centre this Thursday, October 1, with contemporary crime writers Siobhán MacDonald,  Catherine Kirwan, Patricia Gibney and Cat Hogan in Nenagh Arts Centre.

On Saturday, the Nenagh Players will stage excerpts from local playwright Jim Minogue's All-Ireland winning play Trainees about the Cormack brothers from Loughmore.

Saturday night sees Elaine Feeney, poet, playwright and novelist who writes about national identity, institutions and particularly women’s lives in Ireland, being joined by Alan McMonagle, who has written for radio, published two collections of short stories, both of which were nominated for The Frank O’Connor award, and Alice Lyons is a versatile writer, artist and filmmaker born in the United States but living in County Roscommon for more than 20 years. She is an award winning poet and her first novel Oona, was published last March. The event will be chaired by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald.

However, expected to be one of the highlights will be a chance to see and hear internationally acclaimed local award winning author Donal Ryan and fellow national award winning theatre director Nenagh's Andrew Flynn read and perform from Donal's book, The Thing About December.

As we are all aware the arts world globally has been devastated by the pandemic, and artists from every discipline, have found their lives and livelihoods, in many cases, wiped out completely.

Once the initial lockdown restrictions were lifted the Dromineer Nenagh Literary Festival committee was determined they would do everything possible to organise a live festival, however limited it would be, while obeying the Government guidelines relating to Covid-19.

“We wanted to host a real festival in real time, and even though our programme is shortened, we are delighted to provide the opportunity for a number of writers, actors, interviewers, and photographers, to showcase their work. Our Nenagh audiences will be among the most privileged people in the country to have access to a live festival, as almost every live event has been cancelled or gone on line this year,” said Geraldine McNulty, chair of the Dromineer Nenagh Literary Festival Committee.

“Despite all the limitations and uncertainty, we are offering a varied programme for a literary festival, with crime, contemporary fiction, a trip to the Jane Austen era, and a showcasing of our own local writing and history, all being available in this year’s festival,” she said.

“We are particularly proud to be able to bring together, in a unique event, the work of two very successful Nenagh men. Renowned local writer Donal Ryan, and award winning, theatre director, Andrew Flynn will come together for the first time to discuss Andrew’s adaptation of Donal’s novel, The Thing About December.

"n Hall Theatre in Galway last year. We are very much looking forward to hearing from them and seeing scenes from Donal’s novel performed live”, she said.

The Tea and Cake with Jane Austen event being hosted in Ashley Park in Ardcroney is proving to be very popular with both performances now sold out.

“The festival committee would also like to acknowledge and thank the director of the Nenagh Arts Centre, Eva Birdthistle, and her staff, for their support for the festival and artistic life in the community. Without the Arts Centre the festival would festival would not have been possible this year.

Thanks to an investment in new technology made by the centre, a live recording of the events being held in the Arts Centre will be available on the Nenagh Arts Centre website,, for two weeks after the Festival, for a fee of €5.

This means that all the many supporters of the Dromineer Nenagh Literary Festival, both local, national and global, will be able to enjoy the events from their own computers, from 24 hours after the event is over, and for two weeks.

A full programme of events can be viewed on and bookings can be made, subject to conditions due to Covid-19, at

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