Myth and Mystery: JFK and the Irish Imagination

Myth and Mystery: JFK and the Irish Imagination
Tuesday 2nd July at 7pm


Join Writer and Director Alan Gilsenan as he reflects on the iconic presence of John F. Kennedy on the Irish cultural landscape.

Free, no booking required.

About Alan Gilsenan

Alan Gilsenan graduated with First Class Honours in Modern English and Sociology from Trinity College, Dublin where he received the inaugural A.J. Leventhal Scholarship.

Gilsenan initially made a number of award-winning documentary films about Ireland: THE ROAD TO GOD KNOWS WHERE (Special Jury Prize, 1989 European Film Awards), STORIES FROM THE SILENCE (both of which won two Jacobs Television Awards (Irish Television Critics), PROPHET SONGS and BETWEEN HEAVEN AND WOOLWORTHS.
 
Next he made the documentary series GOD BLESS AMERICA for ITV Network. These were six hour-long, highly personal portraits of U.S. cities through the eyes of American authors - Gore Vidal's Washington DC, Neil Simon's New York, Scott Turow's Chicago, Marsha Hunt's Philadelphia, Patricia Cornwell's Richmond and Garrison Keillor's Minneapolis and Saint Paul.

Other documentaries include the opening and closing episodes of THE IRISH EMPIRE, an extensive history of the Irish Diaspora for BBC, RTE and SBS Australia; EMERALD SHOES , an ITV Network Special on the history of Irish Dance; THE GREEN FIELDS OF FRANCE, a poetic film about the Irish who died in World War One; PRIVATE DANCER, a behind-the-scenes portrait of Ireland's first lap-dance club; MAURA'S STORY, the story of a young Irish-American woman who became a Buddhist saint; ROAD II which revisited THE ROAD TO GOD KNOWS WHERE; and a portrait of playwright Tom Murphy SING ON FOREVER; and THE GHOST OF ROGER CASEMENT, a documentary on the life of English knight and executed Irish rebel Roger Casement, which revealed the results of a forensic examination into the infamous Black Diaries and which won an IFTA (Irish Film & Television Academy) Award and Best Feature Documentary at the Celtic Film Festival .

Gilsenan has directed film drama including Samuel Beckett's EH JOE, the short film ZULU 9, an experimental film based on Paul Durcan's poem SIX NUNS DIE IN CONVENT INFERNO; the experimental feature film ALL SOULS' DAY, both of which he also wrote; as well as the feature film TIMBUKTU for which he was nominated for an IFTA as both director and designer.

Gilsenan also directs for the theatre. His productions include the world premiere of Tom Murphy's THE PATRIOT GAME and ON THE OUTSIDE/ON THE INSIDE for the Abbey; the Irish premieres of Jean Genet's THE BALCONY and Tennessee Williams' SMALL CRAFT WARNINGS; his own adaptation of John Banville's novel THE BOOK OF EVIDENCE at the Gate Theatre; and recently Tom MacIntyre's WHATHAPPENED BRIDGIE CLEARY at the Abbey.

Gilsenan is currently finishing a four-part documentary on a major psychiatric institution THE ASYLUM to be broadcast by RTE this Autumn.


Alan Gilsenan is chairperson of the IRISH FILM INSTITUTE, a member of the IRISH FILM BOARD, and the Board of INTERNATIONAL DANCE FESTIVAL IRELAND.

Join us for a month of engaging cultural and literary events inspired by our Summer Exhibition Homecoming: JFK in Ireland

To learn more about the JFK exhibition click here.

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