The weekend in Mayo

Your guide to what’s on this weekend in Mayo including jiving, weddings, folk rock, opera, genealogy and the journey of an arctic buoy.

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Music, folk rock, Iain Matthews

Ballina Arts Centre, Friday at 8 pm

British folk rocker Iain Matthews, who in 1969 swept Europe with the hit Joni Mitchell song ‘Woodstock’, is coming to the Ballina Arts Centre tonight at 8 pm. Tickets to see the former member of Matthews’ Southern Comfort and Fairport Convention cost between €12 and €15. Booking is advised.

Art exhibition DRIFTED ITP47 The Story of an Arctic Buoy

Áras Inis Gluaire, Belmullet

A unique exhibition charting the 18-month journey of an oceanographic arctic buoy through the Atlantic all the way to Blacksod Bay opened last night at Áras Inis Gluaire, Belmullet.

Transition year students from the local secondary school, Coláiste Chomáin, were involved in the project.

The exhibition consists of an installation of the buoy, video, images and a soundscape that will capture its trip across the Atlantic. It continues throughout the month of February.

Dancing, National Jiving Championships

McWilliam Park Hotel, Claremorris, Friday and Saturday

Some of the country’s top jivers will be in Claremorris over the weekend for the National Jiving Championships at the McWilliam Park Hotel. Staged over two nights, an real exhibition of jiving skill is promised, with entertainment from Derek Ryan and his band on Friday night, and Mike Denver on Saturday night. Contact the hotel on (094 ) 9378000 for more information.

Movies, 12 Years a Slave

In local cinemas now

Highly regarded as a front-runner for Best Picture at this year’s Oscars, 12 Years a Slave is still showing in local cinemas. It’s based on the incredible true story of Solomon Northup, a free black man from upstate New York who is abducted and sold into slavery.

With a running time of just over two hours and rated 15A, 12 Years a Slave could be a good afternoon activity this weekend.

Fairs, Ultimate Weddings Live

Breaffy Arena, Castlebar, Saturday and Sunday

Ireland’s best-known wedding planner and television personality, Franc, is back in Mayo for the Ultimate Weddings Live show this weekend.

Meet Franc and hear about his latest wedding ideas on the main stage at 3pm on Saturday and Sunday. A host of local exhibitors will be showing their wedding wares.

Tickets available at www.ultimateweddingslive.com for €5 or pay €7 at the door.

Drop-in activity, Mayo Genealogy Group

Museum of Country Life, Turlough, Saturday 11.30 am to 1 pm

If you’re a fan of the popular genealogy programme Who Do You Think You Are, an afternoon learning all about tracing your own family tree could be just the ticket this weekend.

The free drop-in activity at the Museum of Country Life Turlough is organised by the Mayo Genealogy Group. No booking is required, new researchers are welcome and lots of free, practical tips are on offer from the group.

At 2pm, William Lyons is giving a genealogy talk on burial registers as a useful tool for researching family history.

Art, The Vanishing Present

Custom House Studios, Westport, concluding this weekend

This weekend is the last opportunity to see The Vanishing Present, an art project by Sarah Stevens in the Custom House Studios, at the Quay, Westport.

The exhibition is a collection of photography, sculpture and drawings capturing the beauty and decay of forgotten and abandoned spaces like homes, schools, hotels, train stations and factories.

Opera, Rusalka, Live at The Met

The Linenhall Theatre, Saturday at 6 pm

Renée Fleming delivers a superb operatic performance as the lovelorn mermaid Rusalk, beamed live from The Met in New York to the Linenhall Theatre on Saturday evening. The Dvorák fairytale opera is described as ‘sumptuously melodic’ and is part of the Linenhall’s live opera season. Rusalk is one of the most successful Czech operas and was first performed in Prague in 1901.

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