Words: Dylan Murphy
On Monday 21 December, District is sharing a specially commissioned piece for To Be Irish. To Be Irish is an initiative to create meaningful connections with the Irish diaspora around the world and is brought to you by the Department of Foreign Affairs.
A short film titled ‘Homecoming’ will premiere on December 21 with narration from breakthrough artist Gemma Dunleavy and a score from James Vincent McMorrow.
District will also pair writers up with visual artists to bring together different perspectives on what it means to be Irish at Christmas. Writers Yan Ge, Chiamaka Enyi-Amadi and Karen Cogan will have their work paired with acclaimed photographers Linda Brownlee, Dragana Jurišić and Shane Lynam respectively for a series that will live on both the District and To Be Irish sites.
Our collaboration with To Be Irish will culminate with the launch of Homecoming, a short film about Irish people abroad who are unable to return home for Christmas. In the short film, an Irish woman in London is caught in a reverie as she contemplates the fact that she will not be able to return home for Christmas.
Meanwhile, back in Ireland, the world is left empty without her presence. District have enlisted the help of James Vincent McMorrow and Gemma Dunleavy to contribute a score and narration, respectively. London-based, Irish playwright Karen Cogan provides the original screenplay.
Speaking on the short film, Director George Voronov said, “Karen’s script really resonated with me because it cut to the core of how we relate to Christmas time.”
“The idea of Christmas is a mosaic that is made up of countless fragments of memories. It’s never any one single thing. It’s a complex combination of moments and emotions; every hug, every cuddle, every cup of tea. They all coalesce to become more than the sum of their parts. The feeling of the video was informed by my own friends that I’ll be missing this Christmas. My hope is that it will resonate with those around the world who are also missing their loved ones at a time that is so much about being together.”
To Be Irish aims to be a virtual hub for sharing the joy of being Irish at special moments throughout the year. People are also encouraged to share their stories of what it means to be Irish at Christmas by tweeting and using the #ToBeIrish hashtag.
Click here to register for tickets to watch the premiere of ‘Homecoming’ on December 21 at 12pm.