The Miller's Story is at Friars Gate theatre this weekend
THE highlight of this weekend has to be Dreams Fest in Bruff - a full weekend of music to celebrate Dolores O'Riordan. Toss in a circus, some fine comedy, saucy Chaucer and a new exhibition at the city gallery and we have the makings of a great weekend in Limerick!
Thursday (Sept 5)
Fossett's Circus arrives at Cleeves car park in the city centre this Wednesday for twenty shows of clowning and death-defying acrobatics between now and September 15. They're competing with Circus Vegas out the Ennis Road, so for once in Limerick we have all the circuses we can possibly eat. Fossett's is Ireland's national circus, touring continuously for 131 years, and is an utter powerhouse when it comes to sawdust and feats of danger.
They've promised an entirely new and bigger show in Limerick for this visit. Weekday shows are at 4:30pm and 7:30pm; at the weekend they're at 2pm and 5pm. All tickets are €10, including the much-desired ringside seats.
Limerick City Gallery is hosting the first Irish solo exhibition by German artist Mariele Neudecker, opening this week. She's best known for her tank series, 3D sculptures presented as 2D pictures in tanks of water.
If water tanks aren't your thing, they'll also have a giant model boat. Catch the exhibition preview on Thursday at 6pm or see it any time until November 17. Free to see.
Comedian Dylan Moran takes on the mysteries of love, politics and kitchen arrangements this Thursday as he visits the University Concert Hall with his new show Dr Cosmos. He's been called the Oscar Wilde of comedy, despite Oscar Wilde being the Oscar Wilde of comedy, but he remains one of the finest acts you can see on the comedy circuit so his shows are always worth catching. 8pm, tickets are €32.
Friday (September 6)
Dreams Fest is a weekend-long celebration of the life and music of Dolores O'Riordan, kicking off in Bruff this Friday. There's an impressive lineup of Limerick music acts set to play the main outdoor stage in the town, with Parliament Square headlining on Friday night at 9pm. Saturday is the big festival day, opening with Fox Jaw at 4pm and running through Mizdrea, the Flag Listeners and Protobaby before one-time Cranberries lead singer Niall Quinn takes to the stage at 9pm. Sunday offers everything from folk to hard rock, with a bit of cabaret thrown in. New Age Messiah will close out the weekend at 8:50pm. Smaller gigs run in the town's pubs every night after 10pm. This is the biggest thing to hit the town since the Irish Civil War, so if you like music (and who doesn't?), get yourself to Bruff this weekend.
Fancy some Chaucer? Simon Thompson visits Friars' Gate Theatre in Kilmallock this Friday night with The Miller's Story, a stage version of the tale told by the miller in The Canterbury Tales. These days, Chaucer is regarded as the father of English literature and the finest poet of the 14th century but you'll want to keep your hat on for this show as the story the miller tells is one of deceit, marital infidelity and a man convinced that the best way to avoid a Biblical flood is by sleeping in a bath tub suspended from the ceiling. It is probably the bawdiest and filthiest yarn ever told by a front-line author in the history of the English language.
That's your warning. It'll be fun. This is the show that you shouldn't miss this week. 8pm, tickets are €10.
Saturday (Sept 7)
Knavecon is Ireland's biggest board game convention and it's back at the Castletroy Park Hotel this Saturday. It'll run from 10am until the early hours of Sunday. Tickets are €18 for adults, €10 for students and free for accompanied children. Unaccompanied children will be given a big bag of jelly snakes and taught how to swear really loudly.
Over 190 supercars will be on display this Saturday afternoon at the Radisson Blu Hotel on the Ennis Road, as the second leg of this year's Cannonball Supercar Roadtrip makes a pit stop in Limerick. A supercar is the pinnacle of automotive technology, as well as a very expensive sports vehicle aimed at men over 40 who want something nice for themselves and need to keep their assets very mobile in the event of a divorce.
For anybody who likes cars, there's nothing more exciting than seeing one that costs more than a house. The motor extravaganza has raised more than a million euros for Irish charities over the past ten years and this year's event is in aid of the Irish Cancer Society. They're scheduled to arrive at 12:30pm and you can check out the cars freely for about an hour.
Limerick Youth Dance Company are throwing a live music, dance and jam workshop at Dance Limerick this Saturday afternoon. It's open to absolutely everybody, regardless of your age or dancing ability, and will kick off with a dance class followed by a jam where everybody can join in if they like. It looks like the sort of inclusive and uplifting fun that we all need as we approach the dank and dark winter, even if you're the sort of person who rather rightly thinks that any sort of jam is best enjoyed from a jar. It will run from 3pm to 4:30pm and will cost you a tenner.
Birmingham death metal band Memoriam are in Dolan's Warehouse this Saturday night. They're an old-school metal band, eschewing unnecessary frills in favour of proper guitar songs about death, war and the meaningless of existence. They'll be supported by Ten Ton Slug and Zealot Cult. 8pm, tickets are €20.
Sunday (September 8)
Berlin-based Irish production duo Long Island Sound bring a heavy dose of techno to Pharmacia this Sunday night, headlining at the seventh iteration of Clique. They've deservedly attracted a lot of attention since moving their sound from jazz-streaked house to darker electro and this gig is a must for anyone into electronica. Doors at 10:30pm, tickets are €10 online or €15 on the door.
Sheila Richardson's Hetertopias exhibition is at Limerick Museum till September 27. Mariele Neudecker's Sediment exhibition is at the Limerick City Gallery until November 17. Both free to see. Tickets are €10 for the Lavery & Osborne: Observing Life exhibition at the Hunt Museum, which runs till September 30.
That's your lot for this weekend and, as always, if you go to things, there will be more things!