Sunny season is upon us, so this month I’m highlighting a number of events around the country to entertain family members of all ages. Most arts and theatre venues have a full book of events for the coming months, and are well worth checking out.

The RHA Annual Exhibition runs until 4 August.

RHA Annual Exhibition

For my first suggestion, I am in the capital city, Dublin (sorry Cork), and this week saw the opening of the RHA Annual Exhibition, which will run until the first week in August.

This is Ireland’s largest and longest running exhibition of visual art. It attracts over 50,000 visitors annually, showing 515 works by some 389 artists across paint, sculpture, drawing, print, mixed media, photography and architecture. Artists are invited to submit their works for the RHA Annual Exhibition through an open submission process.

The works are viewed anonymously but, of course, sometimes an artist’s work will be recognised by someone on the panel. This means that all submissions are judged purely on the quality of the work.

Sometimes something quite unusual will get through and it might not be to one’s individual taste, but that is part of the experience, and each year it uncovers new talent. The intention is to make the exhibition even more accessible and to reach new audiences.

The Royal Hibernian Academy (RHA) originated when artists from the Society of Artists in Ireland petitioned the then Viceroy of Ireland in the late 1700s for the opportunity to exhibit their works annually.

A Royal Charter was finally granted in 1821, giving the Academy independence from all other institutions.

The Academy’s first home was destroyed by fire during the 1916 Easter Rising. The keeper managed to vacate the burning building with the Royal Charter and bank records, but the entire Annual Exhibition of that year, other works and many records were lost. The Academy was without a permanent premises until 1939, when it acquired the house and garden of 15 Ely Place, its home today.

Admission to the RHA Annual Exhibition is free

TuneFest Dungarvan

TuneFest Dungarvan, a most exciting emerging traditional Irish music festival, will take place in that scenic harbour town from Friday to Sunday, 21 to 23 June. It brings together some of the most talented traditional Irish musicians and singers from Waterford, Ireland and overseas for a weekend of top-class music and fun.

With sessions, concerts, recitals and workshops, festival goers can enjoy the cream of traditional Irish music, dance and song. The festival prides itself on being family friendly, and includes opportunities for young musicians to perform and learn with street busking and tutors.

Kicking things off on a high on Friday, 21 June in Dungarvan Town Hall Theatre are Cherish the Ladies, one of the most heralded Irish music ensembles in the world.

This Grammy-nominated Irish-American supergroup formed in New York City in 1985 to celebrate the rise of women in what had been a male-dominated Irish music scene.

Dungarvan, and specifically Club Creation, will rock to the sounds of Talisk who are Saturday’s headline act. This ground-breaking, chart-topping, genre-bending, globetrotting folk group from Scotland promise an unmissable night of high energy music. Talisk are one of the most talked about folk bands in the world, with three albums and numerous awards under their belts.

The final concert of the weekend features Danú, one of the leading traditional Irish ensembles, and they will perform at The Park Hotel, Dungarvan.

This much-loved group brings to the stage a high-energy performance and a glorious mix of ancient airs, popular ballads, céilí, jigs, reels, and polkas to more modern tunes with an Irish trad twist.

Tickets for TuneFest Dungarvan are on sale at and Eventbrite. Prices start from €20

An adaptation of David O'Doherty's book will be staged in Cork.

The Summer I Robbed a Bank

The Everyman Cork presents the stage adaptation of the children’s book The Summer I Robbed a Bank by Irish comedian and author, David O’Doherty. This production, directed by Sophie Motley, will run from 8 to 16 June as part of Cork Midsummer Festival.

The play follows the story of 12-year-old Rex, who is forced to spend his summer holidays on the picturesque Achill Island. Though reluctant at first, Rex soon discovers the island’s whimsical characters and unexpected adventures, leading him on a journey of self-discovery. O’Doherty’s charming and humorous tale is the perfect blend of adventure, heart, and friendship, and the production features a talented cast of both experienced and up-and-coming actors, promising a delightful and engaging experience for audiences of all ages.

The Everyman Theatre is a cultural institution at the heart of Cork City, renowned for its diverse programming and commitment to nurturing local and emerging talent. A familiar face on television, David O’Doherty is an award-winning comedian, author, and musician. He has written several critically acclaimed children’s books, including two which have been adapted for the stage. CL

Ticket prices start at €15 plus booking fee and there is a family of four price of €50 plus booking fee. See

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