Newstalk features documentaries covering a wide variety of subjects, from the plight of the Malawi people to the Aurora Borealis, and everything in between.
A new radio documentary, premiering on Newstalk this Sunday, tells the story of two sisters from Northern Ireland who left their family and faith for an alternative spiritual journey with the Hare Krisna community in the 1990's. Peace and Love in a Time of Trouble is produced by Magi Scully and takes the listener on a journey from Christianity to Krishna with Karuna Smith-Ryan, from Co. Down. Peace and Love in a Time of Trouble will be broadcast on Newstalk 106-108fm on Sunday 13th October at 7am, and repeated on Saturday 19th October at 9pm. Podcast goes live on www.newstalk.com after first broadcast. Living in Northern Ireland during the troubles, the Smith sisters moved with their husbands to rear their families among the Hare Krisna community at Inis Rath Island in Lough Erne on Fermanagh. A relatively new religion, the Hare Krisna's were founded in New York in 1966, and were best known in Ireland for their street singing and chanting, as well as vegetarian food restaurants. Beatle band member, George Harrison, became a devotee and helped the spiritual organisation with funds for printing books, recorded albums and made the significant donation of a manor house in Watford, which is the UK headquarters today. Karuna Ryan Raised among the island community, Karuna's daughter Ekhadasi, was educated by Christians and moved to study fashion design in the UK, where she is a weekly visitor to the Temple in Watford. Karuna Ryan now runs Karuna's Kitchen Catering at Temple Bar food market Dublin on Saturday and People's Park, Dun Laoghaire on Sunday. Sukhada Smith-Repass founded the Ray of Light, which is located at the Shambala Holistic Centre in Derrylin Co. Fermanagh. www.rayoflight108.com Since the 1990’s, the number of Hare Krisna’s living on Inis Rath has dwindled. A small community are presently fundraising to maintain the temple, and open for retreats and events including the masters of calm festival. For more information, visit: www.Krishnaisland.com CREDITS: Peace and Love in a Time of Trouble was edited by Heather Mcleod, Produced and Presented by Magi Scully. The programme was funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland with the Television License Fee. Thank you to Karuna and Ekhadashi Ryan, to Sukhada Smith – Repass, Radha Mohan Das and Keshto and the Hare Krisna communities at Bhakti – Vedanta Manor and Inis Rath. Peace and Love in a Time of Trouble will be broadcast on Newstalk 106-108fm on Sunday 13th October at 7am, and repeated on Saturday 19th October at 9pm. Podcast goes live on www.newstalk.com after first broadcast.
16 October Finished
Producer Francesca Lalor explores the world of the professional kitchen, as seen through the eyes of Irish chefs “My ethos of food is that the hero of the dish is the ingredients…and my life’s work is to make them sing…” Chef Gavin McDonagh Knives At Dawn will be broadcast on Newstalk 106 – 108fm on Sunday 8th September at 7am, and repeated on Saturday 14th September at 9pm. Podcast from www.newstalk.com after the first broadcast The working life of a professional chef involves long hours, split shifts, ferocious stamina, practiced skill, and above all, the quest for culinary perfection... In her latest radio documentary, premiering this weekend on Newstalk, producer Francesca Lalor follows the lives of Irish chefs, from the start of their training, through their experiences working in kitchens around the world; from Michelin-starred restaurants in Paris, to poky dive-bar kitchens in the Lower East Side of New York, and back to Ireland. Their passion for food is contagious. Their backroom tales of all the drama, steam, sound and fury that take place in professional kitchens are at times extreme, at times hilarious, and always gripping. This documentary, Knives At Dawn aims to capture their stories. There was a time, not so very long ago, when garlic was practically unheard of in Ireland. When you couldn’t get a decent cup of coffee anywhere. Where eating Italian meant visiting your local chipper. Exotic ingredients like balsamic vinegar, Jalapeño peppers, Parma ham or mozzarella were either unheard of or highly unusual. But now, Ireland has a burgeoning culinary scene that is experimental, vibrant and modern. A scene that is holding it’s own against any food scene in the world. And one of the reasons for this is that many of our chefs emigrated, trained and worked around the world, and have now returned, armed with new knowledge, skills and experience. So where did these chefs end up cooking? What experiences did they have on their travels, armed only with the tools of their trade: their precious set of knives wrapped in their apron? In this programme, we follow the lives of Irish chefs as they tell the story of their careers in their own words. Beginning with their origins, right back in their early training days, we travel with them as they recount their experiences of emigrating and working in kitchens around the world, before we journey back with them to Ireland, as they return with their new-found skills, ready to break into the Irish culinary scene. Who will tell the story? Knives At Dawn features Irish chefs who have developed their reputations in International kitchens. Each of our chefs comes from a very different background, and each took a very different path over the course of their chefing careers. What they share is that they are passionate about their jobs. They are also excellent storytellers, with the passion to bring their varied experiences in kitchens worldwide to life. They are the upstarts, the returned rebels, the innovators...and they represent the future of the Irish food scene. Chef Brendan Keenan, currently trains chefs in Cathal Brugha Street at the Technological University Dublin: Originally from Ardee in Co.Louth, Chef Brendan Keenan was meant to take up a job as an accountant, but opted to rebel, and trained as a chef instead. In 1989, he won a Green Card to the US in a visa lottery, and secured a scholarship to train in New York. “I got lucky”, he says. “I just walked up Broadway and got a job”. Working in top kitchens, including the Waldorf Astoria, he cooked for the great and the good, before returning to Ireland. One of Brendan’s claims to chefing fame is that he cooked for Margaret Thatcher when she was in Dublin for political talks in the ‘80s. “The British Secret Service insisted on coming into the kitchen, and standing over me as I prepared her food. They made me taste each ingredient before it went into the pot”, he remembers. Brendan now trains budding chefs back home in Dublin, bringing his wealth of experience and passion for ingredients garnered abroad to a new generation of trainee chefs. Chef Gavin McDonagh, formerly of Brioche Restaurant, and currently development chef with the Dylan McGrath Restaurant Group: Originally from Crumlin, Gavin McDonagh started training as a chef at the age of 16 in his local college, Crumlin College, before continuing his training in Cathal Brugha Street and Tallaght IT. He started cooking “just to have a trade”, but when he entered a chef competition in Hotel Olympia in London, and won three gold medals, he got bitten by the bug. Returning to Ireland, he walked into L’Ecrivain Restaurant in Dublin, and got hired as an apprentice chef, under the tutelage of Derry Clarke. “Derry mentored me constantly”, he says, “and encouraged me to compete at Eurotoques with the Irish National Team”. In 1995, he won the Baileys Young Chef of The Year, and his prize was a four month stint working as an apprentice chef in Paris in a 1-Star Michelin Restaurant, in a very old classical style restaurant called Le Petit Colombier, under Chef Bernard Fournier. There, Gavin developed a love for classical French cooking. “In Paris, I learnt the ethos of what flavour should come out of food, and the old-school way of doing things…One of my jobs was to go the market at 5am every Tuesday. I learnt about ingredients…you’re picking up kilos of Morel mushrooms, that would cost a fortune in Ireland, and using them for stews…truffles are being used as if they’re free…” Returning to Dublin, via stints in kitchens in Germany and the U.K., he landed a job cooking in the Michelin-Starred Restaurant Patrick Guilbauld…”In my formation as a chef, I got to experience two different styles of Michelin starred food, and that’s what informs my cooking. My ethos of food is that the hero of the dish is the ingredients…and my life’s work is to make them sing…”. Gavin currently works as development chef with the Dylan McGrath Restaurant Group. Knives At Dawn will be broadcast on Newstalk 106 – 108fm on Sunday 8th September at 7am, and repeated on Saturday 14th September at 9pm. Podcast after first broadcast from www.newstalk.com Francesca Lalor is an award-winning radio documentary/drama maker. She is Series Producer of Documentary & Drama On Newstalk 106-108fm. She also lectures in radio production in DLIADT and Griffith College Dublin. This is her 20th feature-length radio documentary/drama. CREDITS: Knives At Dawn was produced, recorded and edited by Francesca Lalor. Mastered by John Murphy of Guerrilla Sounds. The programme was funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, with the Television License Fee. With thanks to Chef Brendan Keenan, currently training chefs in Cathal Brugha Street at the Technological University Dublin; and Chef Gavin McDonagh, formerly of Brioche Restaurant, and currently development chef with the Dylan McGrath Restaurant Group. Sound and Vision is a funding scheme for television and radio that provides funding in support of high quality programmes on Irish culture, heritage and experience, and programmes to improve adult literacy. The scheme is managed by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.
8 September Finished
Enquiring Minds will be broadcast on Newstalk 106 – 108fm on Sunday 1st September at 7am, and repeated on Saturday 7th September at 9pm Just as the schools go back for another year, Newstalk 106-108FM broadcasts Enquiring Minds, a new radio documentary which follows a group of ten-year-olds (4th class) from the Central Model Senior School on Gardiner Street in Dublin’s inner city, who are participating in a series of philosophy and contemporary art workshops. The documentary celebrates the capacity of children for critical and independent thought, and their ability to question and explore through the disciplines of contemporary art and philosophy. Central to the documentary is the children’s responses as they are engaged on a philosophical level. We listen to their capacity even at a very young age for deep thinking and critical reflection. Woven through the children’s voices are the reflection of philosophers and teachers on the role philosophy and contemporary art has in our society. We hear about the importance of engaging children in philosophical enquiry in school through the study of philosophy and art. We see how this can teach children to become critical and independent thinkers, empowering them for a future within a rapidly changing world. Together philosophical ideas and contemporary art can open up new ways of connecting and developing the enquiring mind, enriching the child’s capacity for expression and for critical and independent thought. “We try and find ways of talking about values and ethics philosophically, but also to find ways of connecting with the lives of children and young people so they have these spaces to explore, and understand, and imagine different ways of thinking and existing in the world,” said Aislinn O’Donnell, Philosopher and Professor of Education at Maynooth University, member of the Centre for Public Education and Pedagogy and founder member and ambassador of Philosophy Ireland. “They really have something to offer us in terms of showing us the singularity of who they are, the ways they see the world, what they have witnessed, experienced and the wisdom that comes from that, I think we can underestimate children.” Enquiring Minds is also a story of the need to create space and time within a rapidly paced society for engaging with the complexity of concepts and ideas, to question deeply, to imagine divergent views, to explore many answers to the same questions about love, justice, identity, existence, meaning, politics and knowledge. “When you engage in philosophy for children it forces you to rethink your understanding of philosophy and rethink your understanding of children. It is not some cute novel thing that is happening, it is people making sense of their experience. And just because they are shorter and have not been around as long should not make a difference”, said Dr Joe Oyler, lecturer in teacher education in Maynooth University, co-ordinator for the philosophy for children workshops hosted by the Institution of the advancement for philosophy for children. Katy Fitzpatrick, who works in gallery education with a focus on children and young people’s engagement in contemporary art and co-creator of Art and Philosophy in the classroom said of the philosophy and contemporary art workshops; “To have that space to be able to have those conversations in a safe way, I think for children to have those ranges of experience with different artists and art practices with different galleries, to go into artist studios. To work in different rhythms and methodologies for children is really important” Enquiring Minds will be broadcast on Newstalk 106 – 108fm on Sunday 1st September at 7am, and repeated on Saturday 7th September at 9pm Podcast will be available for download from newstalk.com after the broadcast. Credits: Enquiring Minds is a Curious Broadcast production funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland with the Television License Fee. It was narrated and produced by Patricia Baker, with edit and final mix by Gerry Horan at Contact Studio. To find out more about The Enquiring Classroom Project, go to: http://www.enquiring-project.eu/the-enquiring-classroom-training-manual.html Sound and Vision is a funding scheme for television and radio that provides funding in support of high quality programmes on Irish culture, heritage and experience, and programmes to improve adult literacy. The scheme is managed by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland. Curious Broadcast is an arts-based broadcast studio that creates a space for innovation and cultural experimentation across all sectors. Curious Broadcast is based in Inchicore, Dublin 8.
4 September Finished
In the latest episode of Documentary On Newstalk, Producer Jim Doherty goes on a road-trip with Europes first, and Irelands only, cross-border, cross-community mobile library in: ‘Books Over Borders’. In 2004, Europe’s first cross-border mobile library took to the roads, serving rural communities in Donegal, Derry and Tyrone. Funded by the EU’s Peace Programme, it was jointly conceived by Donegal Library Service and Libraries NI. It is a prime example of co-operation between institutions who operate in different jurisdictions, working together to serve isolated border communities. A practical, all-island approach to pooling resources and providing a quality service. However, this innovative and valued community resource that has trundled along our border roads for the past 15 years is facing a few bumpy future. Brexit, and the unknown impact it will have on our borders and cross-border institutions, is creating some uncertainty and worry. The service has become an important feature in the lives of the villages, rural housing estates and small primary schools that it stops at during its 6 days a week schedule. Many people have come to rely on it, not just for books but for the social element it provides. Much of this is due to the cheerful and knowledgeable librarian, Denis Doherty, who has built strong links with his clients over the years. The mobile service also has a key role to play in promoting literacy, particularly among children who would otherwise be glued to a smartphone or tablet. The people who use the service have many reasons for doing so and would sorely miss it if it were gone. Jim Doherty spent some time travelling with the mobile library, calling at the schools and villages and meeting the people who use it. The border itself is still invisible and will hopefully remain so. As Denis pointed out over one of many cups of tea “People are the same no matter what side of a border you’re on”. BROADCAST TIMES: ‘Books Over Borders’ will be broadcast on Newstalk 106-108fm on Sunday August 18th at 7am, with repeat broadcast on Saturday 24th August at 9pm. PODCAST from www.newstalk.com after the first broadcast CREDITS: ‘Books Over Borders’ was produced, recorded, and edited by Jim Doherty - and was supported by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, through the television licence fee. ABOUT THE PRODUCER: Jim Doherty is a lecturer in Media Production in Derry’s North West Regional College and produces documentaries and radio features for broadcasters including RTE, BBC Radio Foyle, Newstalk and Highland Radio.
16 August Finished
This weekend on Newstalk, a new radio documentary by Sorcha Heron explores the history of Ballykinlar Internment Camp in County Down, where thousands of Irish men, including her own grandfather, were interned by the British army during Ireland’s War of Independence…. Broadcast Times: Ballykinlar: The Barbed Wire Cage will air on Newstalk on Sunday 11th August at 7am, with a repeat broadcast the following Saturday 17th August at 9pm. Podcast available from www.newstalk.com after first broadcast. Ballykinlar: The Barbed Wire Cage that held 2,000 Irish Prisoners of War By Sorcha Heron. Many Irish families are laden with tales of republicanism and my family is no different. Growing up, I’d heard occasional stories of my grandparents’ (on my dad’s side) passion for the Republican movement. But it wasn’t until 2016, when the decade of centenaries was in full swing, that I took a keener interest. While rifling through an old bureau in my parents’ home, I came across a little notebook – an autograph book – and tucked between its pages was a very old black and white photo of some young men. It turns out my grandfather James Heron was among the rather dishevelled looking group and alongside him – with his hand firmly placed on his shoulder – was an older man, my great-grandfather Joseph Heron. Pic: My grandfather James Heron sitting, front row, centre. My great-grandfather Joseph Heron standing, second row, second from right (hand on James’s right shoulder) Credit: Muiris Heron But it was the inscription on the back that really piqued my interest: “Ballykinlar Internment Camp, 1921”. I’d never even heard of Ballykinlar – were was it? Was it a prison? A military camp? And how both my grandfather and great-grandfather ended up being there? Pic: A drawing of Ballykinlar by an internee. The Mourne Mountains can be seen through barbed wire with seagulls flying (signalling a beach nearby). Ballykinlar: The Barbed Wire Cage that held 2,000 Irish Prisoners of War is the story of how, in the aftermath of Bloody Sunday, November 1920, thousands of Irish men across the country were interned by the British army at a military camp in County Down. Some of the men would later have prominent roles in Irish society and culture - including former Taoiseach Sean Lemass; founder of Walton’s School of Music Martin Walton; along with esteemed songwriter Peadar Kearney. But many of the men were from ordinary backgrounds – like my grandfather and great-grandfather - whose lives were upturned by extraordinary events designed to break their spirit. And yet, these men not only survived but occasionally thrived within their small community - endeavouring to better themselves through education, the arts and above all else comradeship. Pic: Internees’ signatures in Hut 14, Camp 2 in Ballykinlar, including my grandfather James Heron (Seamus O’Hearagain) and my great-grandfather Joseph Heron. The 48-minute documentary features contributions from Moira Mahon and Muiris Heron (relatives of James and Jospeh Heron); Assistant Curator at Kilmainham Gaol Aoife Torpey; Professor of Irish Contemporary History Eunan O’Halpin; Author of Prisoners of War: Ballykinlar Liam O’Dhuibhir; Pat McCarthy of the Military History Society of Ireland; Music Historian at Illinois University Christine Bashford; and Major Tony Canniford at Ballykinlar Training Camp. With archive material supplied by Kilmainham Gaol; Down County Museum; Ballykinlar Training Camp; Pat McCarthy’s own collection; Heron family collection. A very special thanks to Mike King, Heritage Manager at Down County Museum where of the ‘Ballykinlar History Hut’ project will be located in 2020. For more information or to share any knowledge of Ballykinlar from 1914 onwards, go here: https://www.facebook.com/pg/BallykinlarHistoryHut/about/ Broadcast Times: Ballykinlar: The Barbed Wire Cage will air on Newstalk on Sunday 11th August at 7am, with a repeat broadcast the following Saturday 17th August at 9pm. Credits: Ballykinlar: The Barbed Wire Cage was produced and narrated by Sorcha Heron. Sound designed, recorded and edited by Neil Kavanagh. Actors were: Sean O’Suilleabhain, Aaron Creavin & Niamh Hassell. Music: Arise: Ballykinlar March performed by: David McEntee on piano, Frank McCann on vocals, and Niall Connaire on violin. The project was supported by The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland as part of the Sound and Vision 3 Funding Scheme.
14 August Finished