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Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights Workshop Programme
Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights Workshop Programme
October 20, 2022 @ 11:30 am – 12:30 pm IST
As part of the Creative Eco-Centre for the Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights project, Smashing Times artist and facilitator Michael McCabe hosts a series of creative workshops with secondary school students on the arts, climate justice and human rights.
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Michael McCabe, actor, choreographer and facilitator with Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality, Ireland
Vanessa Ogida, Creative Entrepreneur
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Smashing Times artists and facilitators Michael McCabe and Vanessa Ogida facilitate energetic arts-based workshops with secondary school students from across Dublin on the themes of the arts, climate justice and human rights.. The workshops have been designed by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality artists Michael McCabe, Mary Moynihan, Ciara Hayes and Vanessa Oggida and use theatre and drama techniques to explore climate change, climate justice and biodiversity. The workshops are supported by Concern and WorldWise Global Schools. The workshops are conducted as part of a year-long programme called Creative Eco-Centre for the Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights – see further information below.
Smashing Times Creative Eco-Centre for the Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights – A Creative approach to Climate Action
“There is a magic machine that sucks carbon out of the air, costs very little, and builds itself. It’s called a tree.”
George Monbiot, Author
The Smashing Times Creative Eco-Centre for the Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights , led by Mary Moynihan, writer, theatre and film-maker, uses the arts, social media and new digital technologies to promote intersections between human rights, arts, technology, climate justice and global citizenship education. The project is implemented by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality with Irish Aid World Wise Global Schools, Concern, Front Line Defenders and partners from across Europe supported by Erasmus+. The project is implemented by Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and Concern with schools and the general public and results in the collaborative design and creation of an online ‘Creative Eco-Centre’. The project involves a collaboration between artists, young people and the general public.
The aim is to create a vision and design for, and to bring to life in virtual format, a unique Creative Eco-Centre for the Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights. A series of artworks are developed as artists and partner organisations work with young people in order to create a national Creative Eco-Centre for the Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights.
What would such a centre look like, where would it live and what will it achieve? All questions to be answered by young people working with artists and partner organisations, coming together to create a collective vision for a Creative Eco-Centre for the Arts, Climate Justice and Human Rights to be presented for the 2022 Dublin Arts and Human Rights festival.
The Creative Eco-Centre is housed online as part of the Smashing Times Virtual Arts Centre funded by the Arts Council. This is an online 3-D gallery space dedicated to the arts and human rights. The online centre has a series of ‘virtual’ galleries or exhibition sites such as the Arts and Human Rights gallery; the Arts and Peace Gallery and the Creative Eco-Centre.
The Creative Eco-Centre is an innovative, online space with an online exhibition and associated information created by students working with artists and facilitators to highlight global citizenship, climate justice and human rights. The centre has an information and Education hub with content from Smashing Times, Concern and from students on global citizenship, climate justice and human rights and access to online training; and a social media space for youth.
The virtual centre contains a gallery space with artworks and images from artists and young people; an information and Education hub with content from Smashing Times, Concern and from students on global citizenship, climate justice and human rights and access to online training; and a social media space for youth. The Creative Eco-Centre will feature an online exhibition created by the students working with theatre practitioner and facilitator Michael McCabe to highlight global citizenship, climate justice and human rights.
A real site for Smashing Times and the centre is an aim to be worked on throughout 2022. Young people work with artists and facilitators on the overall design of the online Creative Eco-Centre with content provided by the young people with support from the artists and partner organisations. The aim is to create an online Creative Eco-Centre with a visual art and poetry exhibition using the arts to promote climate justice with input from young people in terms of design and content and to raise awareness of the Dublin Arts and Human Rights festival with young people, encouraging students to engage in creative arts practice exploring links between social activism, climate justice, development education and human rights on a local and global scale.
Creative Workshop Programme
Smashing Times are working with schools in Ireland and schools in an African Nation using creative processes, new digital technologies and social media activism to engage the students in the collaborative design of a ‘Creative Eco-Centre’ exploring global citizenship education and Climate Justice linked to Human Rights to be housed on the new online Smashing Times virtual arts space. Our aim is to work with students from January to December 2022, supporting the students to firstly create visual designs and ideas for what they want the new Creative Eco-Centre to look like and secondly to create content for the Creative Eco-Centre, an online exhibition created by the students working with an artist and facilitator to highlight global citizenship, climate justice and human rights.
Gathering on the Pond is a dazzling storytelling performance suitable for families that is fun, magical and sparking. A theatricality staged fusion of story, colourful costumes and fun moments intersected with dialogue, and song on science, community connections and the environment, and a love of dreams!
Professor Magpie Lovelace arrives in a panic. She is a scientist who loves birds and music. It’s her first day in her new role as Choir Director and she’s late. Well, she travelled there on the infamous number 46a bus, so say no more. Her choir, The Rockin’ Robins, have been singing the same old tired tunes for years now and with the Dawn Chorus Competition fast approaching Professor Magpie, our Professor of Ornithology, wants to try something new. She loves birds, they speak to her and she understands their harmonies and melodies which are full of passion. But their future is bleak and under threat! Professor Magpie wishes to create, with the help of her choir, a song that will teach future generations to respect our feathered friends and keep their future safe. A young scientist, a bus conductor, the dawn chorus and big dreams! And especially . . . the right to dream of a better world! What will happen next? The play provides information on climate change linked to concepts of justice, equality, diversity and human rights and raises awareness of social activism amongst young people, all displayed in a fun and entertaining way.
This theatre performance for all ages highlights our local Irish wildlife, along with simple steps that we can all take to protect it. Based on themes of sustainability and promoting women in STEM, ‘Gathering on the Pond’ uses music, songs and lots of sparkle to engage with younger audiences. Written by Aoife Reilly, Mary Moynihan and Michael McCabe, and based on an original scenario by Mary Moynihan, Gathering on the Pond makes complex themes accessible to audiences of all ages, and use creative processes of music, song and dance for a fun and engaging theatre experience.
Speaker and Artist Biographies
Michael McCabe is a performer, theatre director, movement choreographer, facilitator and arts therapist. He is a graduate of the prestigious Ecole Internationale de Theatre Jacques Lecoq, Paris, France, and The Gaiety School of Acting, Dublin, Ireland.
His theatre appearances include The Drowning Room (Project Arts Centre), Borstal Boy, The Risen People (The Gaiety Theatre), A Christmas Carol, The Ginger Ale Boy (Corcadorca Theatre Company), Lives Worth Living (Graffiti Theatre Company), Good Evening Mr Joyce (Samuel Beckett Centre), Diarmuid agus Grainne, An Bradan Feasa, The Libertine, New World Order (Iomha Illdanach Theatre Company), Promises, Promises (Project Arts Centre), A Day With Daghdha (Daghdha Dance Company), Macbeth, Six Characters in Search for an Author, St. Joan, Ariel (all at the Abbey Theatre), Wheel, Jeckyll and Hyde (Dublin and Prague Fringe Festivals), Resist /Surrender (Dublin Dance Festival), and Where The Shoe Pinches (The Pavilion Theatre). He was clown co-ordinator for 35 clowns and appeared in Barabbas Theatre Company’s production, City of Clowns, at the Dunamaise, Junction and Eargail Arts Festivals, and The Complex, Smithfield and appeared in Pagliacci at The Everyman Place Theatre, as part of Cork Midsummer Festival.
His television and film appearances include Aristocrats (BBC), Ireland:1848, (RTE), Window (IFI), All God’s Children (RTE/IFI), Nationwide (RTE). In 2021, Michael will appear in Bean Sidhe, Sweetcake, and Sodium Party, a new feature film directed by Michael McCudden.
Directing credits include: The Dead Woman’s Son (Smock Alley Theatre), A Wonderful Life, Peter Pan’s Cirque D’Imaginaire (TU Dublin Theatre), Showcases 2017-2019 (The New Theatre) and in 2020, The Grimm Tales (Smock Alley Theatre). Recent appearances include Footfalls, The Journey Home, and in Mermaid Arts Centre for Culture night on a work-in-progress, His Left, Her Right, supported by Mermaid and Wicklow Arts Office.
Michael has an M.A. (Honours) in Dramatherapy from the National University of Ireland, Maynooth, an M.A. in Modern Drama Studies from University College Dublin, and a B.A. (Honours) in Communication Studies from Dublin City University. He has directed theatre work in the HSE, the Dyspraxia Association of Ireland, Trinity College Dublin, St. Michael’s house, and with other special needs organisations and schools with a focus on developing the potential of theatre for working with diverse groups.
Michael has been working as a Movement Director, teaching extensive movement classes for actors at the Conservatory of Music and Drama, TU Dublin, the National Association of Youth Drama, Ringsend Institute, the Department of Performing Arts, Bray Institute of Further Education, and The Gaiety School of Acting (full time course).
Michael is a resident artist with Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and works with Smashing Times as a performer, director and arts facilitator on a range of projects from Acting for the Future to Legends of the Great Birth to State of the Art. His theatre company, Ruaille Buaille, is building a physical theatre ensemble style based on the techniques of Jacques Lecoq, Anne Bogart, and Arianne Mouchkine. Michael was movement director on The Merchant of Venice, at Mermaid Arts Centre, and on the world premiere of Guerilla Days in Ireland World premier in Cork last year, due to open in The Olympia Theatre, Dublin on September 3rd.
Michael is a graduate of National University of Ireland, Maynooth, (M.A. Dramatherapy, 2.1 Honours), and was awarded a scholarship to train with internationally renowned theatre director Anne Bogart in New York. Bursary awards include South Dublin County Council, Irish Actors Equity, and The Arts Council.
Mary Moynihan, (she/her), MA, is an award-winning writer, director, theatre and film-maker, an interdisciplinary artist and one of Ireland’s most innovative arts and human rights artists creating work to promote the arts, human rights, climate justice, gender equality, diversity and peace.
Mary is Artistic Director of Smashing Times International Centre for the Arts and Equality and works collaboratively with artists and over 50 organisations across Ireland, Northern Ireland, Europe and internationally, using the arts to promote rights and values for all. Company patrons of Smashing Times are Sabina Coyne Higgins, Senator Joan Freeman, founder of Pieta House, Ger Ryan, actor and Tim Pat Coogan, writer and historian. Founding patrons were writers Maeve Binchy and Brian Friel.
Mary’s work has won a number of awards including the Allianz Business to Arts Awards, a GSK Ireland Impact Award, a Dublin Bus Community Spirit Award, a National Lottery Good Cause Award, the international #ArtsAgainstCovid award, an Arts Council Project Award and an Arts Council Agility Award.
Mary is Artistic Curator for the annual Dublin Arts and Human Rights festival implemented by Smashing Times and Front Line Defenders in partnership with Amnesty International, Fighting Words, ICCL, NWCI, Irish Modern Dance Theatre, Trócaire and Poetry Ireland, funded by The Arts Council. The aim of the festival is to showcase and highlight the extraordinary work of human rights defenders in Ireland and around the world, past and present, and the role of the arts and artists in promoting human rights today.
Mary’s artistic practice encompasses theatre, film, literature, poetry, and curatorship. Mary’s work focuses on primal, visceral and intuitive responses to vulnerability and conflict and an exploration of self and the other. Her work explores an interconnectedness of the body, voice and imagination, revealing the inner life through physical and spiritual energies and intuitive engagements. Mary has a focus on using historical memory in her artistic practice as inspiration for the creation of original artworks across a range of mediums, remembering stories of ordinary yet powerful women and men from history and today who stood up for the rights of others.
As a playwright, Mary’s work includes the highly acclaimed The Woman is Present: Women’s Stories of WWII co-written with Paul Kennedy, Fiona Thompson and Féilim James; A Beauty that will Pass; Constance and Her Friends – selected by President Michael D. Higgins for performance at Áras an Uachtaráin for Culture Night 2016; In One Breath from the award-winning Testimonies(co-written with Paul Kennedy); and Shadow of My Soul, May Our Faces Haunt You and Silent Screams.
Mary’s film work includes the hour-long documentary Stories from the Shadows, the short film Tell Them Our Names, inspired by women’s stories of WWII and selected for the London Eye International Film Festival and Kerry Film Festival, the creative documentary Women in an Equal Europe and the short film Courageous Women inspired by powerful women’s stories from the 1916 to 1923 decade of commemorations period in Irish history.