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Rinceoir Cónaitheach Sean-nóis ceaptha ag OÉ Gaillimh
Thursday, 26 March 2009
(English Version)Tá sé fógartha ag Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh, OÉ Gaillimh, go bhfuil Seosamh Ó Neachtain ón Spidéal ceaptha mar an chéad Rinceoir Cónaitheach Sean-Nóis riamh san Ollscoil. Léiríonn a cheapachán an bheocht atá sa damhsa ar an sean-nós i gConamara faoi láthair agus an cumas iontach atá ag Ó Neachtain mar dhuine de na damhsóirí is fearr dá bhfuil ann. Chuir an Dr Louis de Paor, Stiúrthóir Ionad an Léinn Éireannaigh, fáilte roimh an gceapachán mar chuid de thiomantas na hOllscoile do na taibh-ealaíona, agus go háirithe do phobal ealaín thraidisiúnta Chonamara: "Is iontach an rud an borradh atá tagtha faoin damhsa sean-nóis le deich mbliana anuas, agus tá sé aitheanta anois ar an léiriú is cinnte agus is fearr de chultúr na hÉireann, anseo agus thar lear". Fuair Seosamh Ó Neachtain céim as OÉ Gaillimh agus tá sé ar dhuine de na rinceoirí is mó cáil atá tar éis damhsa ar an sean-nós a chur ar an ardán náisiúnta agus idirnáisiúnta. Sa bhliain 2000 fuair sé sparánacht ón gComhairle Ealaíon le staidéar a dhéanamh ar rince tap i Nua-Eabhrac. 'A wonderful improvisation of down-to-earth Irish tapping that showed the direct link between Irish roots dancing and American rhythm tap', a thug Ballet.Magazine ar an damhsa a tháinig as an staidéar sin. Fuair an rince a rinne sé leis an damhsóir Tamango ón Afraic moladh chomh hard céanna ó léirmheastóir an Irish Times a dúirt go raibh cosa Uí Neachtain 'like playful birds at the floor. He almost hovers, and you almost wonder if he might be able to dance across water'. Tá stáitsí ar fud an domhain roinnte ag Seosamh Ó Neachtain le cuid de na ceoltóirí traidisúnta is fearr dá bhfuil in Éirinn faoi láthair, Altan, De Danann, Máirtín O'Connor, Harry Bradley, Jesse Smith, Johnny Connolly agus Róisín Elsafty ina measc. Chomh maith leis sin, tá an clár a rinne sé sa tsraith Ceolchuairt do TG4 i ndiaidh gradam ag an bhFéile Scannán Ceilteach 2009 a bhaint amach. Tá sé ag gabháil do chéim MA le Ceol agus na Meáin Chruthaitheacha in Institiúid Teicneolaíochta Dhún Dealgan faoi láthair. Mar chuid den obair a bheidh ar siúl aige i gcaitheamh na bliana, múinfidh Seosamh Ó Neachtain sraith ceardlann damhsa ar an sean-nós in Amharclann Bhanc na hÉireann, OÉ Gaillimh. Tosóidh na ceardlanna ar 7.00in agus beidh an chéad cheann ar siúl Dé Máirt, an 7 Aibreán. The Dancer-in–Residence programme is supported by Ealaín na Gaeltachta, Údarás na Gaeltachta and The Arts Council in association with the Centre for Irish Studies at NUI Galway. -críoch- NUI Galway Appoints Sean-Nós Dancer-in-Residence The Centre for Irish Studies at NUI Galway is delighted to announce the appointment of Seosamh Ó Neachtain, from An Spidéal, as its first ever Sean-Nós Dancer in Residence. His appointment acknowledges the current vibrancy of sean-nós dancing in the Connemara Gaeltacht and Ó Neachtain's outstanding abilities as one of the most celebrated practitioners of his particular art form. Dr Louis de Paor, Director of the Centre for Irish Studies, welcomed the appointment as part of the University's commitment to the performing arts in general, and to the traditional community arts of the Connemara Gaeltacht in particular. 'The revival of sean-nós dancing over the past ten years has been quite extraordinary, to the point where it is now identified as one of the definitive and most popular expressions of Irish culture, at home and abroad.' A graduate of NUI Galway, Seosamh Ó Neachtain is one of a handful of performers who have rejuvenated the Gaeltacht tradition of sean-nós dancing, introducing the athleticism and sophistication of a dynamic but neglected art form to national and international audiences. He has performed on concert stages throughout the world with some of the finest exponents of traditional music, including Altan, De Danann, Máirtín O'Connor, Harry Bradley, Jesse Smith, Johnny Connolly, and Róisín Elsafty. In 2000, Seosamh was awarded a bursary from the Arts Council of Ireland to study aspects of tap dance in New York City. The resulting performance was described by Ballet Magazine as 'a wonderful improvisation of down-to-earth Irish tapping that showed the direct link between Irish roots dancing and American rhythm tap. In his collaboration with African dancer Tamango 'a dialogue expressed not in words but in physical exhilaration', Ó Neachtain's feet, according to the Irish Times, were 'like playful birds at the floor. He almost hovers, and you almost wonder if he might be able to dance across water …' His contribution to the TG4 series Ceolchuairt explored the influence of Irish dance on American tap dancing and has just won the entertainment category in the Celtic Film Festival 2009. Seosamh is also one the founding members of the traditional dance show Barr go Sáil/Heel to Toe which has performed at festivals such as Tonder Festival, Denmark, Celtic Connections, Glasgow and the International Dance Festival of Ireland. He is currently studying for a Masters Degree in Music and Creative Media at Dundalk Institute of Technology. Seosamh Ó Neachtain will conduct a series of dance workshops at NUI Galway beginning on Tuesday 7 April. The workshops, which are free of charge and open to the public, will take place in the Bank of Ireland Theatre, commencing at 7.00pm. The Dancer-in–Residence programme is supported by Ealaín na Gaeltachta, Údarás na Gaeltachta and The Arts Council in association with the Centre for Irish Studies at NUI Galway. -ends-
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International Dance Festival in Aid of Special Olympics
Wednesday, 25 March 2009
Galway's first International Dance Festival will be held at the Radisson SAS Hotel, Galway, on Thursday, 16 April. The event is a fundraiser for the Galway division of the Special Olympics and the money raised will be used to fund 22 clubs throughout the county of Galway. Dancing from countries including Mexico, Malaysia, Slovakia, Peru, Cuba, Argentina, South Africa, Guatemala, India and Ireland will be featured. The International Dance Festival promises to be a lively event, according to chief organiser, Gloria Avalos, who works at the School of Medicine and Health Science at NUI Galway: "People from different countries will be performing their traditional dances in traditional costumes. It's a unique opportunity to see a variety of cultures in the one place". The event will begin with a parade led by the athletes and members of the Garda Síochána who will be carrying the Special Olympics torch. This will be followed by various dance exhibitions, from a Mexican 'Dance of the Deer' to an Argentinean Tango. The dancing exhibitions will be followed by live music from Galway's well known salsa band, Cuba Libre, and finishing off with a D.J. playing world music. Gloria Avalos is organising the event along with other colleagues from NUI Galway and the Sisters of La Retraite, Galway. The Festival was launched on Monday by NUI Galway President Dr James J. Browne. Tickets are available in advance from the Socs Box, in Áras na Mac Léinn at NUI Galway, and at the Radisson SAS Hotel on the night, where doors open at 7.30pm. All proceeds from the event will go to the Special Olympics clubs in Galway. -ends-
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Virtual Stock Market at NUI Galway to Understand 'Boom and Bust' Cycles
Tuesday, 24 March 2009
An effort to understand the 'boom and bust' cycles of financial markets has seen the launch of a Virtual Stock Market experiment at NUI Galway. The Virtual Stock Market will provide a platform to conduct a series of experiments with both automated computer agents and humans. The aim is to understand the factors that underpin 'boom and bust' cycles, as well as human and software agents' interactions. The Virtual Stock Market is the result of a multi-disciplinary research collaboration between the J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics, the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) and the Computer Integrated Manufacturing Research Unit (CIMRU) at NUI Galway. The Virtual Stock Market lists ten companies and has four types of computer agents trading in the market. NUI Galway students are invited to trade on the stock market and each participant will be given an initial endowment of 10,000 Airgead (virtual currency) and an equivalent amount of shares. Dr Srinivas Raghavendra, an Economics lecturer at NUI Galway, Dr Laurentiu Vasiliu, a group leader in DERI/CIMRU, and PhD student Daniel Paraschiv in CIMRU/DERI are behind the experiment. Dr Raghavendra comments: "The main objective of our research is to understand the generating processes that underlie the empirical facts of the real world financial markets. We approach this problem from an experimental economics point of view as we believe that experiments with human agents could provide us with insights or testable hypotheses to further our understanding of the dynamics of financial markets". Human traders on the virtual stock market are welcome to try out their own investment strategies, technical trading strategies or other hybrid strategies. The high-frequency data (real time data) of the virtual market can be directly downloaded to a spreadsheet, which will allow participants to try out various technical trading rules. Dr Laurentiu comments: "It is envisioned by the DERI commercialisation team to move the concept forward towards a potential future professional stock exchange testing environment, where novel strategies and financial products can be tested by interested financial houses. This would ensure a basis for evaluating new financial approaches as well as IT technologies that are currently developed by NUI Galway and other Irish universities. At the same time it can be shown how a very close cooperation between IT and Economics researchers provides a safe and needed financial testing ground, particularly in the current economic climate". There is also a teaching benefit to be had from NUI Galway's new stock exchange. According to Dr Raghavendra: "As a teaching tool, the Virtual Stock Market provides an excellent opportunity for students, at all levels, to understand the basic functioning of a stock market. For advanced students, it provides a platform to test their own investment strategies. For students of computer science and IT, this platform provides a unique opportunity to understand the interface between human agents and computer agents (algorithms), and its implications for the dynamics of financial markets". The scope of the Virtual Stock Market can be extended to Futures Trading and Monetary Policy experiments. Dr Raghavendra adds: "Even the anticipation of a monetary policy swings the markets, let alone the post announcement effect. The experiments in this area would be useful to study the dynamic between monetary policy rules and instruments, and human agents' expectation formation, which is one of the fundamental issues in understanding the stability of markets". The results of the experiment with the virtual stock market will be presented in July to the Society for Computational Economics at the 15th International Conference on Computing in Economics and Finance in Sydney, Australia. -ends-
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Equality and Inclusion Week at NUI Galway
Tuesday, 24 March 2009
Topics including multiculturalism, racism, social inclusion and family rights will be discussed by a range of experts during Equality and Inclusion Week at NUI Galway. Organised by the University's Law Society, Equality and Inclusion Week runs from 23-26 March and will feature a series of free public lectures. On Tuesday, 24 March, Fr Peter McVerry will share his thoughts on social inclusion, drawing on his 30 years of experience of working with young homeless people in Dublin. During this time he has campaigned tirelessly for the rights of these young people and in 1983 he set up the Peter McVerry Trust which provides a wide range of services catering for the diverse needs of young homeless people through supported accommodation, drug detox, education and training. The talk will take place at 8pm in the IT Building, Room IT250. On Wednesday, 25 March, there will be a discussion on the need for the law to recognise the diversity of Irish family life and to ensure that all family types in Ireland have equal opportunities. Panellists will include: Geoffrey Shannon, family lawyer and children's rights expert; Margaret Dromey, CEO of the unmarried parents group Treoir; Brian Sheehan, Managing Director of the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network; and Dr Anne Egan, lecturer in Family Law at NUI Galway. The discussion will take place at 8pm in the Cairnes Theatre. On Thursday, 26 March, a multiculturalism and anti-racism evening will feature Niall Crowley, former CEO of the Equality Authority, Chinedu Onyejelem, Editor and Publisher of the multicultural newspaper, Metro Éireann, and Robin Hannan, CEO of the Irish Refugee Council, as guest speakers. The discussion will take place at 8pm in the Cairnes Theatre. The public lectures will take place at 8pm each evening in the Cairnes Theatre, in the Arts and Science Building at NUI Galway. Several other societies and a number of charity organisations will also organise equality and inclusion themed events during the week. Highlights will include a multicultural fair, an art exhibition and a film night. Commenting on the week student Karla Sheerin-Griffin, who is director of Equality Week for the NUI Galway Law Society, said: "The purpose of Equality Week is to promote awareness and positive change. We want to encourage people to embrace and support diversity. With all the attention focused on surviving the recession and saving the economy, we seem to be ignoring what really matters, which is people. We need to recognise the inequalities in Irish society and take positive action to remove them. I really hope students take part and help us send the message across that students care and want to help Irish society to change for the better". All events will be run on a first come first served basis and will not be ticketed so arrive early to avoid disappointment. For further information on any of the week's events contact Karla Sheerin-Griffin on 0864051400, or email firstname.lastname@example.org -ends-
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National Finals of 2009 Debating Science Issues Announced
Monday, 23 March 2009
(Sligo School to Represent Connaught) The national finals of the 2009 Debating Science Issues competition, which is co-ordinated by the Regenerative Medicine Institute at NUI Galway, takes place on Thursday, 2 April, in the Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin. Four teams of secondary school students will represent the provinces of Connaught, Ulster, Leinster and Munster in the debating competition final. The public are invited to attend. This year, there were almost 40 entries in the Debating Science Issues competition, which encourages young people to engage in debate on the cultural, societal and ethical implications of advances in biomedical science. Participating students took part in a series of three-hour workshops designed to facilitate discussion and learning about biomedical science - from stem cell research to nanotechnology - in an informal round table forum. Competition organiser Danielle Nicholson, from the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) at NUI Galway, comments: "The debating science competition concept was initially run on a regional basis and due to its success went national last year. Workshops provide an open and impartial environment, and challenge students to think about the ethical and societal impact of biomedical research and stimulate them to learn more about this important area of research. The debates themselves reflect the level of insight and interest among 15-18 year olds in the field of biomedicine". Kathleen Kelly is a teacher at Ballincollig Community School, Co. Cork, which won the national final of Debating Science Issues 2008. Ms Kelly commented: "The competition has opened students' eyes to scientific issues in newspapers, for example, that may not have been explored without Debating Science Issues". Funded by the Wellcome Trust, Debating Science Issues is co-ordinated by REMEDI at NUI Galway in conjunction with fellow Science Foundation Ireland Centres for Science, Engineering and Technology: UCC's Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre and DCU's Biomedical Diagnostics Institute. The event is also supported by the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, along with W5 Science Centre in Belfast and Tyndall National Institute at UCC. -ends-
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