The legend of the Táin Bó Cúailnge will be celebrated spectacularly on Thursday 7th of February at 7pm when the 2019 Táin March Festival will be launched at An Táin Arts Centre. The launch will be followed by a performance of Warrior of the Táin by Quintessence Theatre, An Táin Arts Centre’s Theatre Company in residence.
The Táin March was established in 2011 as a community walking festival to celebrate and promote the epic tale of the Cattle Raid of Cooley. It begins in Rathcroghan in Co Roscommon, where Queen Maeve began her quest for the Brown Bull of Cooley and ends in Bush, Cooley, Co. Louth on the June bank holiday. This year the Festival is sponsored by Dundalk Credit Union. The launch event will start at 7pm with a drinks reception sponsored by Carlingford Brewing Company, who brew the fitting Donn Cuailnge brown ale. Speeches from the founding committee members will be followed by a musical performance by Gerry O’ Connor of his original composition “The Táin March”.
At 8pm Quintessence Theatre will take to the main stage to perform Warrior of the Táin, the grand finale of Quintessence Theatre’s 4-year residency with An Táin Arts Centre.
For jealousy of her husband’s prize bull, and in a vengeful bid to right old wrongs, Maeve, Queen of Connacht, takes her people to war with Ulster to steal the legendary Brown Bull Cúailnge. With the Ulstermen stricken by a curse her victory seems ensured – until Cúchulainn enters the fray, and brutally disassembles her army, her sanity, and all she has ever loved.
Stylised and expressionistic in both performance and design with a multi-rolling ensemble cast, Quintessence use their dazzling physical theatre techniques to take this epic of ancient Irish literature and breathe vivid new life into it on the Táin stage by telling the untold side of this infamous story: through the eyes of the warrior Queen Maeve.
Villains and heroes will never look the same again…
During the interval National Pub of the Year and member of Boyne Valley Flavours, The Glyde Inn, Annagassan will transport us back in time with their authentic and award-winning locally sourced chowder made up of “Bia Bán” or white food eaten during the time of the Táin. The chowder contains white fish, smoked haddock, Clogherhead hake and prawns. The dish is accompanied with a modern twist of sun dried tomatoes and basil focaccia. You can purchase your bowl of Táin chowder in advance from our website.
Paul Hayes, Director of An Táin Arts Centre says: “We are so excited to be launching the Táin March Festival on the same night as the premiere of Warrior of the Táin. The fact that is all happening in An Táin Arts Centre, is a match made in heaven”.
This unique celebration of heritage, theatre, food and drink takes place on Thursday 7th February at 7pm at An Táin Arts Centre. Additional performances of Warrior of the Táin are Fri 8th and Sat 9th of February at 8pm at An Táin Arts Centre.