Make A Move festival in Limerick captures imagination of the public

Alan Owens

Reporter:

Alan Owens

OVER 40 different street artists from around the country drew thousands of visitors to the People’s Park on Saturday as part of the Make A Move hip-hop and street festival.

OVER 40 different street artists from around the country drew thousands of visitors to the People’s Park on Saturday as part of the Make A Move hip-hop and street festival.

As the sun shone and DJs pumped music out from the bandstand, some of the country’s top street artists daubed their work on temporary murals around the park. The Park Paint Parade was one of the central events taking part as part of the four day youth festival, intended to celebrate hip-hop culture in the city.

Breakdancers, MCs and DJs also populated Bedford Row for a block party on Saturday afternoon, delighting shoppers with their head-spinning skills.

These were the more obvious events among a packed programme that also included gigs, workshops - featuring up to 100 kids from communities around Limerick - panel discussions and exhibitions.

The festival arose from the coming together of community groups from St Munchin’s, Moyross, King’s Island, St Mary’s and Southill who formed a community arts committee, facilitated by the Paul Partnership and City Council, while funding was secured from the Arts Council and Limerick Regeneration.

Monica Spencer, one of the organisers along with Shane Curtin, Bazzy B and Catherine O’Halloran, education officer in Limerick City Gallery of Art, who drove the park event, said the festival’s success surprised the team behind it, who worked on a voluntary basis.

“It had very modest beginnings, we didn’t expect it to be such a significant event,” explained Monica.

“It set out to be something that had a genuine roots up connection through community based work, and the city centre events really drew attention to the different elements of hip-hop that exist in the city.”

New Orleans rapper Voice, who performed several times over the weekend, hosted a spoken word and hip-hop workshop in the Learning Hub in Thomondgate, in the centre’s new music hub facility, on Friday.

“It is exciting to be here, I am really pumped to see so many young people here,” she explained. “This allows me to bring what I do in the States to communities abroad, which has always been my dream.

“When we organised this, I wanted to be able to make it a point to really connect with the community here. What better way than to do that with kids and being here?”