Titania’s Palace

Grant-aided by the Heritage Council, the short film, Titania’s Palace, explores the collective memory of the world-famous ‘doll’s house’ that was on display in north Wexford until 1965, and is now owned by Leogland in Denmark. Featuring older people sharing their memories with primary school pupils, the film was widely viewed online and in presentations in communities, libraries and festivals throughout county Wexford.


Irish National Opera’s new film The Lighthouse


The Gap Arts Festival is delighted to announce that, fresh from its screening at Hook Head, Irish National Opera’s new film The Lighthouse will be shown at the Gap’s Outdoor Cinema at Ballythomas on Saturday night August 7th

It is based on an actual event in December 1900 when a Scottish lighthouse went dark and the keepers vanished. Investigations suggested a supernatural link. Reflecting this, the composer Peter Maxwell Davies used the Tarot Card, the Tower, in structuring the opera.

A limited audience, in pods in the Community Field, Ballythomas, will enjoy the film on the Gap’s screen and sound system. Details on booking will follow soon.

‘The Lighthouse is not suitable for children,’ Festival Director Garrett Keogh said, ‘but we are continuing the tradition of a late-night family-friendly movie on the night before, Friday August 6th.’

Meanwhile, things are busy at the Gap. ‘We start recording the new audio series this week,’ Keogh said.
Called Are You Ready, after the first words transmitted by radio telegraph, it will be recorded in studio, as well as on location at well-known historical and beauty spots – the new Wexford walking trail at Annagh Hill, Kilninor Graveyard, and the like. It will use the latest 3D sound, and should be listened to on headphones or earbuds for the full binaural effect.
‘Remembering Marconi, who invented radio, (without whom we wouldn’t have mobile phones, or Bluetooth), and remembering that he spent his childhood summers at his mother’s homeplace, west of Enniscorthy, the series is a mix of local history, true crime, altered reality, and a touch of Shakespeare…’

The full Gap Arts Festival programme will be announced soon. The deadline for entries for the Short-Short Showcase, an open call for submissions of new writing for theatre, has been extended to July 23rd. See for further information.




The Gap Arts Festival Short-Short Play Showcase is open to anyone over 16 years of age residing in Ireland. Entries, which must be original work, have a strict maximum of one thousand words – including stage directions. Any works exceeding this limit will not be considered.
There is a maximum of two characters in each script, – any gender or age.
The deadline for entries is noon July 16th. No entries will be considered after this time.
We are only able to accept entries submitted online.
Please do not submit any supporting materials including CDs, photographs, reviews or any audio-visual material.
Scripts must be submitted by the writer and not by an agent or any other third party.
The entrant must exclusively own and control all copyright and all other related rights to the submitted script.
The submitted script must be available for production at the Gap Arts Festival August 6-8, 2021.
All scripts must be double-spaced, and sent as PDFs to
No correspondence will be entered into, except notification of winners.
There is a ten Euro fee per entry, to cover administration.


Life Under Lockdown

The Gap Arts Festival 2020 is delighted to invite you to join us in the online premiere of two short Covid-related films. 

On Friday October 9th at 8pm, the Festival will present the Facebook Live Premiere of Ceol na gCrann, The Music of the Trees; and Life Under Lockdown.

Life Under Lockdown
is a series of videos made by people in and around Ballythomas, north Wexford.
A few years ago, the Festival ran a two-month  Mobile Device Filmmaking Workshop. Earlier this year, into the beginning of lockdown, we decided to put these skills to use. We commissioned a short film to be made by people at home. Ten people, young and old, from 13 to 60 plus, – secondary students, a pizza-serving publican, a local priest, among them, – recorded aspects of their daily lives in the new situation on their phones and laptops. Trailer:


Ceol na gCrann – The Music of the Trees

About this Project

The Gap Arts Festival 2020 is delighted to invite you to join us in the online premiere of two short Covid-related films. 

On Friday October 9th at 8pm, the Festival will present the Facebook Live Premiere of Ceol na gCrann, The Music of the Trees; and Life Under Lockdown.
Ceol na gCrann, The Music of the Trees, is a bi-lingual allegory with original soundtrack by local musician Marc Aubele, and uilleann piper Daire Murray. Shot in the woods at Ballythomas, it features the Giant Stag, an outdoor sculpture by Imogen Stafford, and props made by participants in the Ceardlanna na Lóchrann Draíochtacha/The Magical Lantern Making Workshops.



Fionntán Ó Súilleabháin, Vice-Chair of Gorey Kilmuckridge District, announced that the eleventh Gap Arts Festival will take place at Ballythomas on August 6-8th.
Speaking at the newly erected sign and map for the Wexford Walking Trail opposite the Gap pub, he noted that the Gap’s new audio series starts out at the map and continues on the walk up Annagh Hill.
Are You Ready, a four-part podcast recorded in studio and on location at well-known historical and beauty spots uses the latest 3D sound technology and should be listened to on headphones or earbuds for the full binaural effect.

Are You Ready, were the first words ever transmitted by Guglielmo Marconi, the man who invented radio. He spent his childhood summers down the road at his mother’s homeplace outside Enniscorthy. The series, available in Irish and English, explores Marconi’s theory that no sound ever made, ever dies. So, as well as enjoying the wonderful views from Annagh, the narrator, and the listener, are mysteriously transported into scenes from the past. 

Written by Festival director Garrett Keogh, the series mixes local history, true crime, altered reality, with a touch of Shakespeare…
But live performance and the bringing of people together are at the heart of the Gap Festival. And so, as well as the downloadable audio series, this year’s programme offers a mix of indoor and outdoor events, all organised in accordance with Covid safety guidelines.

The Gap Outdoor Cinema will present Irish National Opera’s The Lighthouse, their brand-new film of their opera based on a true and mysterious story of a lighthouse crew who mysteriously vanished. It is not suitable for children.
But the Gap will also offer a late-night family-friendly movie – so bring your sleeping bags, fold-up chairs and popcorn, and sit back under the stars.
Picnic@TheGap invites families to bring their own food to an afternoon of live music and circus acts in Ballythomas Community Field.

The Field is also the venue for the Sunday lunchtime Classical Concert, with The Navarra Duo, Christopher Quaid and Cillian Ó Breacháin on violins, accompanied by Enya Quaid on piano.

short short showcase

In another new initiative the Gap Short-Short Showcase will present new work – short plays in rehearsed public readings by professional actors and directors. Encouraging local talent, and giving writers a chance to see their work in front of an audience, the submissions cover a wide range of topics and styles, from sea swimming to trade unions, and from tragedy to farce.

There is an outdoor sculpture, The Triskelion, specially commissioned from artist Imogen Stafford, who did the Giant Stag for the Gap Festival in 2020. In the Nature Slate Community Art Project, artist Rachel Druett will host a series of painting workshops for all ages. The works will be displayed in the Gap Community Art Exhibition.
To ensure safe and healthy practice, booking on Eventbrite will be necessary for all events. See for details.

All events will observe government health and safety guidelines, including social distancing and sanitisation. People are respectfully asked to do the same, and to wear masks at indoor events. 
Please note that as audience capacities will be very reduced, there is strictly no admission to any event without pre-booking at



How to Skin a Rabbit How to Skin a Rabbit Acknowledgements


Garrett Keogh, Mary Fleming, Eamonn Nolan and the Gap Arts Festival Committee. Katherine Byrne, Anne-Marie Stafford and all the staff at Ballythomas National School. Ffion Scott Davies & Dolores Davies. Rory & Stephen Doonan. Maggie & Basim in Loggan. The Gap Pub, G.A.R.A. & Patrick Stack. Kilanerin Community Centre, Kilanerin Men’s Shed and Peter O’Connor. Fr. Denis Browne & Kilanerin National School. Robert Duffy & Tinahely Writers’ Group. Seamus O’Brien & Monaseed National School. Carol Boland, Cooneys and Hollyfort Book Club. Terence White and the Courthouse Arts Centre, Tinahely. Rev. Mark Hayden and St. John’s Church Committee. Fr. Chris Hayden & Shillelagh-Coolboy G.A.A. Club. Tinahely Men’s Shed. Kilanerin I.C.A. Coolboy Rangers Soccer Club. Tinahely I.C.A., Nolans of Annagh and Gorey Writers’ Group. Dearbhla Ní Laighin & all the staff at Gorey Library. Amanda Byrne and Gorey Chamber of Commerce. Special thanks to Liz Burns and all the staff at the Arts Department, Wexford County Council. Finally, grateful thanks to each and every participant and especially the parents/grandparents for doing the driving!

How to Skin a Rabbit How to Skin a Rabbit Author Biographies


Carmel Kinsella lives in Toberpatrick. She came to the area when she married Laurence Kinsella in April 1967. Carmel enjoys baking and worked in Institutional Catering in public schools. This is her first time giving Creative Writing a go.

Avae Sweeney lives in North Wexford. She was born in October 2007. As well as telling stories, Avae loves to go on adventures and to swim.

Alex Sweetman McDonald was born in Wexford Hospital in 2009. He lives in Ballythomas and enjoys hurling, rugby, soccer and video games. This was his first time trying out a Creative Writing course and he found it really fun.

Caoimhe McGonigle lives in North Wexford. She enjoys hurling, swimming, football, gymnastics, music, soccer and playing. But her favourite is creative writing. Caoimhe loves exploring and adventures.

Fionn de Faoite plays soccer for Coolboy Rangers and Gaelic Football for Shillelagh-Coolboy G.A.A. Club. He goes to school at Gorey Educate Together. Fionn loves the Gap Arts Festival because it’s fun and there are plenty of activities.

Éadaoin Kinsella O’Neill lives in Toberpatrick. She enjoys doing gymnastics, rugby and G.A.A., but most of all she loves gardening with her Dad and running the fields with her dogs. She tried Creative Writing to help her tell her own stories and to do something different with her ‘Gran’ Carmel Kinsella.

J.R. Hogan lives in Craanford and has done for most of her twenty- two years. She writes because, when growing up, books were a gateway to so many different worlds and places. She hopes that one day her writing may be that same gateway for others.

Brigid Kinsella grew up in rural Ireland in the 60s. Having no TV or telephone, her family interacted daily with neighbouring families. Many tales were recalled in their homes. Now a retired nurse, this year Brigid joined a Creative Writing class.

Rua de Faoite is nearly fourteen. He loves sport, art and gaming. He enjoys writing because it clears your head and is probably kicking a ball in his back garden as you read this.

Brenda Barry is originally from Dublin. She now lives in South County Wicklow. Her grandchildren enjoy hearing her stories of life in County Down and County Dublin, during the 1940’s.

How to Skin a Rabbit How to Skin a Rabbit Foreword


When i go into the school at Ballythomas, for a meeting of the Board of Management, or when we’re setting up the stage for the Gap Arts Festival, or for one of the Festival’s workshops, I’m fascinated by the drawings and paintings, the model-making, and the stories and poems and projects that line the walls.

We didn’t do painting or drawing when I was in school. I remember one day in Primary, a teacher telling the class that ‘there was no art in Ireland. No art and no minerals…’
In Secondary we learned passages of prose, plays and poetry by heart. And we memorised the literary terms such as litotes, synecdoche, pathetic fallacy—words of literary analysis that could get you high marks in exams, even if you never really understood what they meant.

I used to go to the Hugh Lane Gallery, and look at the paintings. And although there were many I didn’t like, and more I didn’t understand, I thought that this was the sort of thing a teenager should do.

Then one day I was walking down the road near where I lived, and something caught my eye. A glass fanlight above a Georgian hall door. I’d seen these fanlights all over Dublin. But never like this. The teardrop shapes in the glass lay on top of each other like… Like shapes I’d seen in the Hugh Lane Gallery.

The Irish artist Michael Farrell had painted canvasses that spilled from the walls onto the floor like giant white teardrops. And I had stared at them, year after year, with not a clue what they were or what they meant.
It took a couple of years, but that day walking down my road, a road I had walked down a thousand times before, I stopped in my tracks. Because I had seen something that I saw every day in a new way.

We used the word metaphor in our Leaving Cert English analysis: a figure of speech in which one thing is compared to another. But they never told us that metaphor comes from two Greek words. And that they mean to carry, or to cross over. And that to me, is what art can do. It can carry us over into new worlds, worlds with different ways of seeing.

This Inter-Generational Writing Course is central to the Gap Arts Festival’s aim of developing skills in the community and collaborating with artists in telling our own stories in our own landscape. I thank Wexford County Council’s Arts Department for all their help and support under the Creative Communities Programme.

I congratulate all the participants and mentor Sylvia Cullen. And I look forward to their stories, their different ways of

looking at the world.

Garrett Keogh, Director, The Gap Arts Festival, June 2019