Free digital and gaming events at Culture Night tonight

23 Sep 2011

Culture Night:

Amongst the many free events happening tonight for Cultural Night across Ireland, you can check out a display of vintage computers and classic arcade games such as Pacman and Space Invaders to play at the DERI in Galway, or head to Dublin’s Science Gallery at TCD for the ELEMENTS exhibition – a visual conversation between art and science that will draw upon the Periodic Table, generally credited to Russian chemist Dmitri Mendeleev.

Art lovers, music enthusiasts, children and people of all ages are getting ready to join in on the festivities for this year’s Culture Night, with free events happening all over the country, as the museums, galleries, iconic buildings and cultural spaces, historic houses, artists’ studios and cultural centres open their doors for free for one night only! The seat of our Government, Leinster House, is even accessible to the public this evening.

Here are some digital snippets:

  • Vintage computers will be on display and you can play classic arcade games such as Pacman and Space Invaders at the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI), in Galway.
  • At the Science Gallery, ELEMENTS will be a visual conversation between art and science, drawing on the Periodic Table, and linking in with the UN/UPAC International Year of Chemistry.

The Culture Night concept came about in 2006 in Temple Bar, Dublin’s cultural quarter, and part of Dublin’s old city.

The night itself, which runs from 5-11pm tonight (23 September), has spread to 30 regions across Ireland.

Culture Night will take place in Dublin, Belfast, Carlow, Cavan, Clare, Cloughjordan, Cork City, Cork County, Derry-Londonderry, Drogheda, Letterkenny, An Ghaeltacht, Galway, Kerry, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Leitrim, Limerick, Mayo, Navan, Offaly, Roscommon, South Tipperary, Sligo, Strabane District, Waterford, Westmeath, Wexford and Wicklow.


  • Tours of the world-renowned Windmill Lane Studios, Dublin, where U2, Kings of Leon, The Corrs and Lady Gaga have recorded
  • Presidential candidates Mary Davis, Sean Gallagher, Michael D Higgins and Gay Mitchell will discuss the importance of art and culture at a Presidential Hustings Meeting in the Irish Film Institute, Dublin
  • Star gazing at Blackrock Castle Observatory, Cork
  • Outdoor film screenings in Letterkenny
  • Performances by up-and-coming opera singers in the world at the Wexford Opera House
  • A showcase of vintage fashion, photographs and prints at Bedlam Market, Derry

Click here to learn more about events in your area.

Highlights from Dublin:

Free buses will ferry people to their chosen gallery/cultural space. Dublin Bus will leave every 20 minutes from three bus stop locations (A, B and C), with each of the three buses covering a different cultural loop in the city.
A = Bachelor’s Walk (in front of the Arlington Hotel)
B = Aston Quay (in front of the USIT office)
C = Trinity College (Grafton Street side)

Heuston/museum quarter

In Dublin’s Heuston/museum quarter, for instance, people can visit attractions such as Kilmainham Gaol, the Guinness Storehouse, Old Jameson Distillery, the NCAD Gallery on Thomas Street and The Joinery.

Historic Quarter

Meanwhile, in the Historic Quarter of the city, St Patrick’s Cathedral will have Evensong at 5.30pm, while the Intercultural Voice choirs will start singing at 6.30pm.

The Contemporary Music Centre on Fishamble Street is aiming to create a sonic experience of live and electronic music, “inspired by the past and shaped by the future in the shadow of Handel”, whose Messiah was first performed in Dublin.

For those who want to learn more about taxes and customs, the Revenue Museum, based in the crypt of the Chapel Royal in Dublin Castle, will tell the story of Ireland’s activities in this area from the distant past to the present day.

New Acropolis Ireland will have rolling events this evening, ranging from talks on philosophy, culture, theology, mythology and the art of happiness, with visual events catering to families, as well as an exhibition of homemade cakes.

Temple Bar and north of the Liffey

In Temple Bar and north of the Liffey, the newly opened independent bookshop Gutter Bookshop, named after the Oscar Wilde quote: “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars” will feature many cultural book events tonight.

Ireland’s oldest Socialist bookshop Connolly Books & The New Theatre will be holding tours of its secret theatre at the back of the shop.

The Ark cultural centre for children will feature The Revs, who will perform in the Ark’s child-sized theatre. Shows will run for 20 minutes, starting from 6pm. They will be suitable for children ages 3 and up.

Gaelchultúr, located at Filmbase, will feature Irish cultural workshops and sean-nós dancing and singing.

North Georgian Quarter

In the North Georgian Quarter, you can go to The Gate Theatre, for instance, the James Joyce Centre, the GAA Museum in Croke Park, Hello Operator for a shared listening experience from the world of radio. At the An Post, in the GPO on O’Connell Street, children can take part in the An Post children’s quiz.

At the Dublin Writer’s Museum ‘Is it Love’ will be a one-act show featuring various observations on the topic of love from writers ranging from Michael Jagger to JM Synge and Richard Brinsley Sheridan.

At Casino at Marino, one of Europe’s finest 18-century neo-classical buildings, situated on Cherrymount Avenue, off Malahide Road (Dublin 3) there will be musical entertainment from 6.30-8pm.

Trinity College Docklands

In the Trinity College Docklands area you can visit Marlborough Studios for free visual/performance art displays, Dance Ireland for dance film screenings and video installations. At the Science Gallery, ELEMENTS will be a visual conversation between art and science, drawing on the Periodic Table, and linking in with the UN /UPAC International Year of Chemistry.

You can also head to the Royal Irish Academy of Music (on Westland Row) for musical performances from tiny tots to grown ups, as well as open rehearsals and classes.

The Oonagh Young Gallery will feature artists who work with sound visuals and text from Budapest, Galway, Berlin and Dublin.

South Georgian Quarter

There too many events to mention here that are happening in the cultural melting pot of Dublin’s South Georgian Quarter. But here are a few snippets:

European Union House will have a exhibition in alliance with The Polish Embassy and Art Polonia, featuring the illustrations of the Polish graphic artist and painter Janusz Kapuska.

Cullenswood House in Ranelagh will feature a candlelit evening in the house where Patrick Pearse founded St Enda’s in 1908 and where an eclectic mix of artists lived.

For one night only, Little Museum of Dublin, will offer guided tours on the hour. Pre-book online.

Children and adults alike can join in and doodle on a massive art canvas that will be laid out in the Alliance Francaise on the corner of Kildare and Nassau Streets.

Jimmy Murphy will be discussing his latest play The Hen Night Epiphany at Focus Theatre.

The National Museum – Natural History will feature the Nocturnal Nature exhibition.

The Italian Institute of Culture – Dublin will feature Chimica-mente Legami di creativitá to celebrate the aforementioned International Year of Chemistry.

St Ann’s Church on Dawson Street, associated with famous authors such as Bram Stoker of Dracula fame, and Wolf Tone, will be open for viewing. Since 1723, bread shelves in the church have contained loaves of bread for the poor of the city.

Freemasons’ Hall will also welcome visitors to look at the eclectic rooms in the Victorian gem, headquarters of the Freemasons in Ireland.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic