A feast of music, visual arts, literature, theatre and family activities is anticipated at the Boyle Arts Festival gets underway next week on July 27th. Musical adventures abound in the line-up for this year’s festival. Highlights include the concert by the Fuzzy Logic Ensemble in the Church of Ireland on Saturday, July 28th, the concert in King House with soprano Sylvia O’Brien and pianist Gary Cooper on Wednesday, August 1st and the concert with pianist Philip Martin on Sunday, July 29th. There is also a plethora of music events going on around the town, including Jimmy Canavan in Clarke’s Bar on opening night, Friday, July 27th, the jazz group Rumbatism in Daly’s on Sunday afternoon, July 29th and The Longshotts in the Moving Stairs on Friday, August 3rd. Exhibitions are on-going throughout the week, with a visual art exhibition of new and emerging artists and invited guests running at King House until Saturday, August 11th and a local and open art exhibition in the Church of Ireland school during the festival. For lovers of literature, events include poetry and storytelling. Poet Paul Perry will attend an event in the Royal Hotel at 12.30 p, on Sunday, July 29th, at which the results of the poetry competition will be announced. Later that night, there will be storytelling with Barry Feely and Pat McGeeney in Clarke’s Bar. Dance, plays, film and comedy will thrill the theatre goers. The ponydance theatre company will give dance performances in the town hall on Friday, 27th and Saturday 28th, while comedian Joe Rooney will appear at the Moving Stairs on Saturday night, July 28th. Later in the festival, the Mangiare Theatre Company will present ‘A Play on Two Chairs’ by Michael West in King House, with performances at 6 pm on Tuesday, July 31st and 1 pm on Wednesday. Also on Wednesday, August 1st, Boyle Drama Group present John B. Keane’s gem ‘Big Maggie’ in the town hall. Przypadek (Blind Chance), a Polish film, will be screened in King House at 3 pm on Friday, August 3rd. Family events also abound at this year’s festival. Among the highlights of this year’s event is the parent and toddler workshops such as Kindermusic with Anna Houston (30th July to 2nd August from 2.30 – 3.30 pm). This workshop emphasises the importance of music in the early years of a child’s life will allow parents and toddlers to participate in learning songs, exploring instruments, singing action songs and listening to music. Sligo Artist Heide Wickham will hold ‘Have fun with Felt’ (2nd and 3rd August from 10.30 – 11.30 am) which allows toddlers to get in touch with their creative side in the company of their parents and take home their very own hand crafted piece of unique felt work. A five-day drama workshop (July 30th – August 3rd) with Catherine Simon will invite groups of 4-7 years to explore their own creativity through the magic of drama while the 8-12 year olds with an interest in all aspects of the stage will participate in fun-filled interactive exercises such as improvisation, character creation and role play. ‘Having Fun with Words’ is the title of the three-day writing workshops (July 27th, 28th, and 29th) for 9-12 year olds. Local writer Gerry Boland will encourage, guide and support budding young writers to get their ideas on to a page and leave with their own original material, freshly written to take home. Other events include the carnival parade workshops for children aged four to sixteen, and a one-day music workshop with the Whistleblast Quartet. Advance booking through the Festival Office is necessary for all workshops. The Festival box office will be located in King House and bookings can be made by calling (071) 96 63085. Further details of workshops are contained in the 2007 Boyle Arts Festival Programme distributed throughout Boyle and the West of Ireland. Further information can be also obtained from the festival website www.boylearts.com or by ringing (071) 96 63085.