MINISTER for the Arts Jimmy Deenihan has revealed that a major performance of Riverdance will herald the start of the City of Culture celebrations in January.
Speaking to the Limerick Leader, the Minister said he could not disclose at this time how much funding he hopes would be made available for the first City of Culture year in the Republic.
The Minister said he will be examining his budget for arts and culture, and will have to cut from other areas in order to give the Limerick co-ordination team the funds that it requires for the year.
“It’s very well organised, there’s a very strong board there and some great people with international, as well as local and national expertise. I’m very confident that it’s going to be very successful. The programme is being formulated and it’s a very ambitious programme,” he said, following a meeting in the Georgian House, which the Leader revealed recently will be the headquarters for the City of Culture next year.
“Of course, now it’s coming down to funding. The Budget is coming up shortly, an earlier Budget this year than in previous years. This could be a major boost to the economy of Limerick city, up to €10m. It could be an extraordinary multiplier to the economy locally. I’m looking at where I can save and cut off of (other budgets) for Limerick.”
As reported in the Limerick Leader last week, a document outlining Limerick’s “approach and strategic aims” for the initiative, containing a request for a specific amount of programming support, has been submitted to Government and is currently being considered at Cabinet level.