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In Pictures: Laois Leaves Festival a huge success with a range of well attended events

The Leaves Festival 2022 brought the best of Irish writing and music to Laois last week.

The festival to welcomed Booker Prize shortlisted Claire Keegan as its first festival length writer in residence.

Her Booker Prize shortlisted novel Small Things Like These has had an extraordinary public reception since publication.

Claire joined the festival for a public event with novelist and broadcaster Edel Coffey as well as a series of workshops in schools libraries and prison.

Small Things Like These Is also the October One County One Book for Laois.

There was also two screenings of the award winning film An Cailín Ciúin based on Claire Keegan’s story Foster.

The festival also celebrated 40 years of Salmon Publishing with a music and poetry event while it welcomed native poet Pat Boran and chef Rory O’Connell (in conversation with Katy McGuinness).

There was plenty of music too with Harpanno, Alannah Murray and The Messages amongst others.

Another event saw host Ronán Hession in conversation with broadcaster Clare O’Brien and there was also an afternoon open mic event of poetry and music.

The World of Words, a collection of short stories by new Irish writers that is the culmination of a creative writing journey started almost a year ago in the aftermath of lockdown, was also launched.

Check out some great pictures from the events below:

Diarmuid Cushen, Maria Dunne and Fergal Cushen at ‘What Poems Look Like’ with Pat Boran during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Kevin Flanagan and Charlie Harte with some of Pat Boran’s works at ‘What Poems Look Like’ with Pat Boran during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Doreen Lewis and Mary Clarken at ‘What Poems Look Like’ with Pat Boran during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Michelle de Forge introduces Pat Boran at ‘What Poems Look Like’ with Pat Boran during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
‘What Poems Look Like’ with Pat Boran during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Spoken Word & Song Open Mic with Laura Murphy during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Colette Wrafter and Joyce Keating at Spoken Word & Song Open Mic with Laura Murphy during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Laois Arts Officer Muireann Ni Chonaill introduces Laura Murphy at Spoken Word & Song Open Mic with Laura Murphy during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Noreen Uí Laighin with PJ and Bernie Cahill at Spoken Word & Song Open Mic with Laura Murphy during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Laura Murphy (right) with friends from left: Aine O’Mahony, Simon Rogers and Eilish Fitzpatrick at Spoken Word & Song Open Mic with Laura Murphy during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Spoken Word & Song Open Mic with Laura Murphy during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Alastair Roe, VIMAR; Doireann Ni Dhufaigh and Laois Arts Officer Muireann Ni Chonaill at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
The Messages performing at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Betty Callaghan, Caroline Delaney, Anne Derenda and Ruth McHugh at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Ruth Condell, Rita Kelly and Arthur Broomfield at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Sheila Coady and Deirdre O’Brien at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Breda Keating, Ann Hanniffy, Rita Kelly, Doreen Roe and Maura Killackey at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Edel Connelly, Rita Kelly, Rosemary Finnegan, Vera McHugh, Daisy Thomas and Ciara McHugh at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Rory O’Connell in conversation with Katy McGuinness during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Authors Jean O’Brien, Mary Dorcey, Louise C. Callaghan and Rita Kelly; Muireann Ni Chonaill, Laois Arts Offcier and Michelle de Forge, Dunamaise Arts Centre Director at ‘Standing Our Ground’ an evening of poetry celebrating 40 years of Salmon Publishing, during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Blathnaid and Ruth Bergin at Rory O’Connell in conversation with Katy McGuinness during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Jonathan and Grainne Walshe at Rory O’Connell in conversation with Katy McGuinness during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Jazz duo Alannah Murray and Jonathan Murray performing at Rory O’Connell in conversation with Katy McGuinness during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Agnes Devlin and Michelle Kennedy at Rory O’Connell in conversation with Katy McGuinness during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Michelle de Forge, Liz Meagher, Kevin Kavanagh and Catherine Guidera at Rory O’Connell in conversation with Katy McGuinness during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Michelle de Forge, Dunamaise Arts Centre Director; Katy McGuinness, Rory O’Connell, Laois Arts Officer Muireann Ni Chonaill and Cormac Kinsella, Leaves Festival at Rory O’Connell in conversation with Katy McGuinness during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Rónán Hession in conversation with Claire O’Brien during the Leaves Festival at Portlaoise Library.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Kamila Duffy and Mary Thompson at Rónán Hession in conversation with Claire O’Brien during the Leaves Festival at Portlaoise Library.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Ann Marie Delaney and Arthur Broomfield at Rónán Hession in conversation with Claire O’Brien during the Leaves Festival at Portlaoise Library.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Rónán Hession in conversation with Claire O’Brien during the Leaves Festival at Portlaoise Library.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Portlaoise Librarian Aoife Moore with Rónán Hession and Claire O’Brien during the Leaves Festival at Portlaoise Library.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Harpanno performing at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Anne and Michael Turley; Frank Smith and Cathy and Adrian Honan at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Heather Goodwin, Muireann Ni Chonaill, Abbie Goodwin, Mary Byrne and Olivia Murray at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Madaline MhicLochlinn, Cynthia Ní Mhúrúchú and Ruth Barry at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Jan Smolorz and Joanna Bar from VIMAR at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Olivia Murray, Pauline Clooney and Mary Byrne at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Maura Keogh and Kamila Duffy at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Niav Riley and Caragh Burns Sharma at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Edel Coffey, Muireann Ni Chonaill, Laois Arts Officer; Michelle de Forge, Dunamaise Arts Centre Director and Claire Keegan at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Members of Portlaoise Book Club, Ray O’Keeffe, Maura Keogh, Kamila Duffy, Mary Thompson and Stephen Connolly at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.
Vanessa O’Conaill, Jason O’Conaill, Cathal OConaill, Muireann O’Chonaill, Laois Arts Officer; Doireann Ni Dhufaigh and John Duffy at Claire Keegan in Conversation with Edel Coffey during the Leaves Festival at The Dunamaise Arts Centre.
Picture: Alf Harvey.

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Stradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016.