Baboró crash course — everything you wanted to know but felt too old to ask

Get ready for a great buzz around Galway this October 17 – 23 when the Baboró International Arts Festival for Children sees children and their families enjoying shows and events throughout the city. We asked AISLINN Ó HEOCHA, Baboró’s Executive Artistic Director, how to get the most out of this year’s festival.

What are the dates for this year’s festival? We’ve got seven action-packed days planned from Monday October 17 – Sunday October 23.

What ages do you cater for? Baboró is for anyone aged 0 to 100; there really is something for everyone. Generally we cater for children aged 0 to 12 but we also have shows for all the family to enjoy.

How do we find out about the festival?

We’ve just launched a brand new website which is really easy to navigate – see baboro.ie You’ll find us on Facebook and Twitter too or you can pick up a festival brochure around the city, and in the Town Hall Theatre.

Can you describe the events in the festival?

You name it, we’ve got it! There’s theatre, dance, music, puppetry, film, animation, exhibitions, talks and workshops.

Are there shows for babies and very small children?

Young children are very welcome at Baboró. The festival caters for early years (ages 0-6 ) as well as older children. This year for example The Shape of Things is for ages 6 months – 2 years. Capacity for early-years shows is quite small so we advise early booking.

Are there shows for older children and adults to enjoy together?

Absolutely – there are lots! Dream City from De Dansers is a really high-energy dance and live music show for anyone aged 8+. We’ve got the fantastic Theatre Lovett, who brought us My Foley, The Radio Operator, with their new show A Feast of Bones for ages 9+. The Gold Digger, for ages 10+, features lots of toe-tapping tunes and rousing live music and The Queen Has Vanished, for ages 6+, speaks to children and adults alike about the power of hope. We’ve also got Galway’s Youth Ballet West with their show Alice Underground (all ages ). These are all wonderful shows to enjoy as a family together.

What price are tickets?

Individual show tickets are €9 and family tickets (4 persons ) cost €30. There are group rates for 10+ of €7.50 per ticket. Tickets for school performances are €6.50 each.

Are there any free events?

Yes, there are free exhibitions, storytelling and workshops to choose from. Simply search for ‘Free’ events on the programme page of our website.

I’ve booked a show. Is there anything else we can do before or after that?

Yes, there’s so much on offer. We encourage everyone to ‘Make a Day of it’ by choosing a show, going to a workshop and checking out our free exhibitions. It’s really lovely to see families enjoying a jam-packed Baboró day.

Do I have to accompany my child to the shows and workshops?

Unless your child is attending a dedicated schools event, adults are required to accompany children at shows and workshops. It’s all part of the Baboró experience to enjoy the festival together.

Are there any suitable shows for children with special needs?

Yes, we have a dedicated programme of ‘Relaxed Performances’ where we aim to provide a comfortable and supportive atmosphere for children with special needs. This year there are three productions with relaxed performances; Whoosh!; I Pack my Bag and The Secret Life of Suitcases.

Do I need to have a child with me to attend a Baboró show?

We’ll let you in on a little secret… grown ups absolutely love childrens’ shows! If you’re curious about a show, buy yourself a ticket and come along, with or without a child. You’ll be sure to get a warm Baboró welcome.

Is there a programme for grown ups too?

Yes, we offer professional development workshops for teachers, early-years educators, students and actors. We also have a delegate programme where Irish and international artists can come along to see shows and network with their peers. For details search for events for ‘Grown ups’ on the programme page of our website.

I’m a teacher. How do I arrange to bring my class to a show?

Children can attend shows as part of their school day together with their entire class. For advice and guidance on the best performance for your class/group, call the dedicated Baboró schools line on 091 562642 or email [email protected]

Right! I’m ready to book tickets. What do I do next?

Visit www.baboro.ie or contact the Town Hall Theatre box office on 091-569 777.

For someone who’s never been to the festival, what do you advise?

Just dive in! Come along to a show and we guarantee you’ll be hooked for life.

Baboró International Arts Festival for Children takes place from Monday October 17 – Sunday October 23 in venues throughout Galway. For more see baboro.ie

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