Excel 15 is gearing up to get going

Excel 15, Mayo County Council’s annual exuberant celebration of young people’s creativity takes place this March. A feast of events, workshops, exhibitions and showcases await this year’s young audiences and events are happening right across the county.

The programme is designed for teenagers and young adults (from the ages of 13 to 21 ) to get involved in and enjoy. Full details of the programme and brochure are available from Mayo Arts Office, by calling (094 ) 9024444 (Ext 7471 or 7558 ) or by emailing [email protected].

As part of Excel 15 students from Ballyhaunis Community School will work with artist Will O’Kane in selecting, discussing, and curating an exhibition of artworks from the Mayo County Collection. The students will also have the opportunity to respond to the artwork with guidance and advice from Mr O’Kane and the students’ own work will also be included in the final exhibition in The Friary, Ballyhaunis.

Mayo County Council will this year work in partnership with Mayo Arts venues to provide a delectable menu of taster art events for secondary school students. The ‘snack’ events will cover a broad spectrum of art forms and will give young people an opportunity to meet artists and arts professionals living and working in Mayo.

Participating venues include Ballinglen Arts Foundation in Ballycastle, Linenhall Arts Centre and the Artsquad in Castlebar, Custom House Studios in Westport, and Ballina Arts Centre. All venues will host two sessions of events, one in the morning and one in the afternoon, and each session will have three ‘snack’ events for young participants. These workshops are now fully booked.

The masterclass programme provides youth arts groups with the opportunity to engage and work with exceptional artists. This year the programme includes three masterclass sessions. Annie Ryan from the Corn Exchange Theatre Company will be facilitating a team-building workshop with members of Mayo Youth Theatre. Anthony McNamee will deliver a percussion masterclass to teenagers in Crimlin Community Arts Collective. Finally, Mayo Youth Orchestra will have a masterclass with renowned conductor James Cavanagh in preparation for their upcoming concert in April.

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