This month we thought we’d try something completely different and report from one of Ireland’s most inspiring Summer Schools, The John Hewitt Society International Summer School in Armagh City.

Now in its 29th year, the John Hewitt Summer School features talks, readings, theatre, performances, discussions and workshops in a unique blend of culture and creativity.

In what was a packed week of events, we managed to talk to writers Carlo Gebler, Maureen Boyle and Malachi O’Doherty about their work and film readings by Ciaran Carson, Eilean Ni Chuilleanain, Tom French, Martina Devlin, Rita Ann Higgins, Grace Wells. We also got to hear Donal Ryan give a sneak preview from his forthcoming novel ‘All We Shall Know’ (an Attic Sessions Exclusive!)

A big thanks to John Hewitt team members Hilary Copeland, Bill Jeffrey, Tony Kennedy & Paul McAvinchey for allowing us to produce our first festival report from a very special Summer School.

It’s quite a long video, so we thought the following list of  timecodes might help you navigate your way through Session #5.

0:40 – Bill Jeffrey, a member of the John Hewitt Society committee, talks to Nessa about the Summer School.
3:03 – Ciaran Carson reads from his poetry collection ‘From Elsewhere’
4:19 – Carlo Gebler talks to Nessa about his work in progress.
10:52 – Martina Devlin reads from her novel ‘About Sisterland’.
12:37 – Karen McDonnell talks to Nessa about the John Hewitt Society Bursary Scheme.
16:59 – Eilean Ni Chuilleanain reads from her poetry collection ‘The Boys of Bluehill’.
18:14 – Tom French reads from his new poetry collection ‘The Way to Work’.
19:34 – Nessa talks with Terri Ciofalo, programme director of ieiMedia’s Armagh Project about their students’ experience in Armagh.
21:32 – Grace Wells reads from her second poetry collection ‘Fur’.
24:44 – Rita Ann Higgins reads from her latest poetry collection ‘Tongulish’.
26:02 – Writers Maureen Boyle & Malachi O’Doherty talk with Nessa about their recent work.
30:09 – Donal Ryan gives a sneak preview from his forthcoming novel ‘All We Shall Know’ (ATTIC SESSIONS EXCLUSIVE!).
33:30 – ieiMedia students Amber, Marion & Lexi talk to Nessa about their experience at this year’s John Hewitt Summer School.

Featured Books

Martina Devlin About Sisterhood (Poolbeg, 2015)
Eilean Ni Chuilleanain The Boys of Bluehill (Gallery Press, 2016)
Tom French, The Way to Work (Gallery Press, 2016)
Grace Wells, Fur (Dedalus Press, 2015)
Rita Ann Higgins, Tongulish (Bloodaxe, 2016)
Donal Ryan, All We Shall Know (Doubleday, 2016)


The Attic Sessions #5 – At The John Hewitt International Summer School

The John Hewitt International Summer School

Presented by Nessa O’Mahony

Theme music by Ellen & Carla
‘Dreamer’, from the EP ‘Floods’
available on iTunes:


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