National Lottery SkyFest Limerick 2010

Fire, Dragons, Flares, Acrobats, Stilters, Drummers.  Arcana performed during an 18 minute Spectacular Fireworks Display in Limerick City to celebrate the St. Patricks Festival National Lottery Skyfest.  Broadcast live on 13th March and once again on RTE before live St. Patricks Day Festival Parade coverage.

Volvo Ocean Race Ball

On Sunday 31st May 2009, the Volvo Ocean Race Ball took place in the Radisson SAS Hotel, Galway.  Attended by 650 guests, Arcana event managed the entire evening on behalf of the VEMUK (Volvo Event Management UK) team -from designing the menus and tickets, to supplying state of the art AV capabilities, venue dressing, entertainment, food and beverages.

Volvo Ocean Race – Street Entertainment

For the duration of the two week port stopover, audiences were entertained by Irelands finest street entertainment companies and performers.  We were asked to program a series of shows and walkabouts to entertain the crowds along the Green Dragon Route – from Eyre Square, to Race Village, the Spanish Arch and out to Salthill for the in port racing.  Including performances by our own members of Arcana, other companies programmed were LUXe, Grant Goldie, Tumble Circus, Spraoi, Bui Bolg, The Gombeens and The Workhouse.

Volvo Ocean Race – Main Stage Bands

An average turn out of 15,000-20,000 per night enjoyed the free band performances programmed on the Topaz sponsored main stage in the Race Village.  Arcana were asked to put together a musical program to entertain audiences for the duration of the two week stopover.  Sharon Shannon, The Hot House Flowers, Aslan and the Stunning were some of the bands that were enjoyed during the balmy summer evenings.

Volvo Ocean Race – Opening Ceremony 24th May 2009

Galway City Council and Let’s Do It Galway commissioned Arcana to devise and produce the official Volvo Ocean Race Opening Ceremony. We created an hour long show that was hosted by MC Hector O’Heochagain and included a feast of musical talent from the West of Ireland. It featured Mairtin O’Connor, Cathal Hayden, Seamie, Jimmy Higgins, Con Tempo, Frankie Gavin and De Dannan, Cois Claddagh, Simon O’Dwyer, The Blue Teapots and aboard the Swan Boat – The Galway Tenors who enthralled audiences with a beautiful rendition of Nella Fantasia.  Many thanks also the Galway Fire Brigade, Cladonian Mariners Club and the LDIG Volunteers.

Volvo Ocean Race – Boats Arrivals

23rd -24th May 2009.  We were on standby for 24hours. Just before midnight we got our final stand by call… Ericsson 4 were in definite first place finish, the Green Dragon and Puma were battling it out for second place.  Eventually at 00:54am Ericsson 4 crossed the finish line at 00:54, followed by Puma Il Mostro at 02:19am and the Green Dragon so close in third place at 2.31am.  Unexpected crowds of thousands turned up at the harbour to welcome the teams to Galway, Port Stopover 7 of the round the world race.  The atmosphere will go down as one of the most amazing night time welcomes in VOR history, the teams were notably touched.   Arcana devised a Boats Arrivals Ceremony to to the historic nautical night.

Bernard Dunne WBA Fight O2 Arena

The atmosphere on Saturday 21st March 2009 was electric in the O2 arena…. only a few hours previously Ireland had beat Wales in the Six Nations and won The Grand Slam.  Hours later, one of Ireland’s top sporting personalties, Bernard Dunne challenged Ricardo Cordoba to claim the WBA Super-Bantamweight Belt.  This day will go down in history as one of the top Irish sporting successes ever.  Brian Peters Promotions invited Arcana to be a part of this event, to create dramatic and tense entrances not only for Dunne, but also Katy Taylor and Andy Lee.  A day we’ll never forget.

Volvo Ocean Race China

Irish Gods, Irish Dancing, Bodhrans Beating and the infamous U2 Massive Heads have been following the Volvo Ocean Race around the world.  Arcana are thrilled to be part of this world class sporting event. We’ve been to Alicante, Cape Town, Qingdao in China and soon we head off to Boston and that’s all before the Galway Stopover!

Munster v All Blacks Thomond Park

Thomond Park in Limerick chose the 30th Anniversary of the legendary win of Munster over the New Zealand All Blacks to mark the official opening of this spectacular new stadium.  Arcana were invited to choreograph the pre-match entertainment.  The atmosphere was intense, the build up was electric and the team did their fans proud.

The pre-match entertainment featured four proud stags accompanied by Red Army warriors waving the Munster flag as fans entered the stadium;  a twelve piece drum performance incorporating 40 genuine Munster fans – dubbed the Red Army; the Irish Air Corps absailed from a helicopter on the pitch and presented the rugby ball to ’78 Team Captain Donal Caniffe; An Taoiseach Brian Cowen unveiled the plaque to signify the official opening and the Munster Rugby Choir performed their debut performance under conductor Anita McMahon and accompanied by Cara O’Sullivan who roused the crowd with their finale song ‘Stand up and Fight’.

Tourism Ireland and Volvo Ocean Race World Wide

Arcana performed recently in Alicante for the first leg of the Volvo Ocean Race.  Tourism Ireland invited Arcana to highlight and promote the Ireland Pavillion in the stunning Spanish port. One of the feature acts was the famous U2 Massive Heads. Norman Hewson, Bono’s brother, is an avid sailor and had travelled from Dublin to support the Green Dragon Team and bumped into his larger than life brother in the Ireland Pavillion.  Sincerest Congratulations to Captain Ian Walker and his Green Dragon crew on passing through the Fernando De Noronha gate in top time, they now hold joint first position with the Ericsson 4 boat.  Arcana are heading to Cape Town,South Africa with Tourism Ireland and can be seen performing daily from the 7th -15th November 2008.

Let’s Do It Galway VOR Dublin Send Off

We were delighted to be invited by Let’s Do It Galway to event manage and perform at the VOR Green Dragon send off at the Royal St. George Yacht Club in Dun Laoighre.  Our Celtic Gods ensured a warm Irish welcome for all guests and the Arcana Drummers gave a rousing send off.

Volvo Ocean Race – Let’s Do It Galway Launch

May 2009 will see the most exciting and prestigious of sporting events coming to Galway Bay.  Arcana were proud and delighted to be involved in the launch of the Volvo Ocean Race 2009.  Let’s Do It Galway contracted Arcana to produce and manage the entire launch event including photo calls.  We are looking forward to next year with great excitement!

St. Patricks Celebrations in New York

Celtic Gods and Kells Fiery Dragons descended into New Yorks distinguised Harvard Club to enthrall the Financial Districts elite.  A night of music, drumming and performance gave the NY financial crowd a St. Patricks Celebration that was certainly the most unique in Manhattan.

An Teagasc Farmfest

Meadowlands in Athenry Co. Galway played host to this years An Teagasc National Farmfest ’08.  Arcana performed many different roles throughout the day entertaining young and old alike!  We performed across the 7 acres of farmland, around the exhibitions and in the childrens circle.  Thankfully it was one of the hottest days on record in June!

Clarinbridge Oyster Festival Shoot

There is something classy about the Clarinbridge Oyster Festival and fittingly the launch this year was in beautiful St. Clerans.  Arcana were there to ensure a great photo shoot and add to the sense of occasion.

The Vintners Federation of Ireland 50th Birthday Celebrations

Galway played host to the 50th Birthday Celebrations of VFI.  Arcana displayed their quirky side during the drinks reception festivites.  An old fashioned shebeen (pub) puppet booth complete with pics of elvis and bunting housed three performers – the barman and two customers. This mini boozers created much merriment amongst the VFI members.

MAMA Awards – Metro Eireann

We hope the picture tells it all!  The MAMA award ceremony required a performance and photo opportunity to reach across the cultural divide.

Midsummers

Every year we are asked to devise performances based on the Midsummers theme – be it Celtic Solstice themed or Midsummers Night Dream theme. Over the summer we have performed for many clients at many locations across the country.

World Rally Championship

The final stage of the World Rally Championships took place in the stunning village of Mullaghmore, Co. Sligo.  We were invited to devise and perform an appropriate closing ceremony.  Celtic Fire Drawings, a massive Fire Ring, a large scale drum set up, Celtic Fire Warriors and statue performers recreating the winners tropy –

Rally Ireland, a joint initiative of Fáilte Ireland and Sport NI, has commissioned a copy of Maurice Harron’s “Hands Across the Divide” bronze statue to present to the winner of this year’s World Rally Championship event in the Northwest from 15th to 18th November.  Harron, a local art teacher created the striking work in 1992.  The fine statue is designed to symbolise and explore issues of cultural belonging, heritage, race and social exclusion. Seán O’Connor, co-promoter of Rally Ireland said:  “This statue captures for us the spirit and essence of what this event is about – integration, friendship and co-operation”.

BIM World Seafood Congress Croke Park

Bord Iascaigh Mhara played host to the World Seafood Congress 2007.  The event was hosted in the Conference centre of Croke Park.  Arcana provided two central themes – a Meet and Greet involving all things sea themed and after dinner a high energy, highly visual Celtic Floor Show.

Bank of Ireland Gaelic Football Final Croke Park Kerry v Cork

When asked to devise a spectacle involving 60 Gaelic Football young players for the opening ceremony of the Bank of Ireland Gaelic Football Final Croke Park we devised a scenario that we thought would thrill the kids and the audience alike!  So we set out to break a Croke Park record and manufactured the biggest flags ever to be displayed in Croke Park! 10m x 15m across.  They were so big there barely room left for the Artane Boys Band!

Opening of Dundalk Stadium

Dundalk is home to the wonderful Irish Legend of Cu Chulainn and An Tain Bo Cuailigne (The Brown Bull of Cooley).  So when it came to the Opening Ceremony of Dundalks great new stadium, we included as part of the entertainment program a spectacular parade featuring Cu Chulainn and his wolfhound – in this case 32ft long! Other performances included Celtic Warriors, Fire Performers, Acabella, a stadium flag parade and Rocedal a stunning black horse, belonging to the Irish God Lu  (meaning light) of the Tuatha De Dannan.

Ovation MCI Group and Flightcentre Ireland Trip

Working in conjuction with Ovation MCI and Flightcentre HQ from Australia Arcana were asked to perform, direct and stage manage the entertainment at the Vertigo Themed Flightcentre Gala Night in the RDS.  Flightcentre flew hundreds of their delighted staff to Ireland and gave them the time of their lives!  Arcana were delighted to be manage the entertainment program which involved Aerial Artistry, quirky and fun Irish Themed meet and greet performances, fabulous Irish Dancing and of course some high energy drumming.

50th Anniversary of the Treaty of Rome

We performed a specially devised parade in Phoenix Park to thousands of people who had turned up at lovely Farmleigh Estate to celebrate the 50th Anniverary of the Treaty of Rome. After the parade the audience gathered to listen to an on-site drum finale.  Thanks to all in Farmleigh who made our day so enjoyable and successful.

Western Development Commission Look West Campaign

Arcana have a good record of creating visuals that will excite photo editors to include companies PR shots in the national and local papers.  Such was the challenge given to us by Bane Mullarkey on behalf of the WDC.  The ensuing campaign made nationwide press.  Pictured is the photographer, the late Trent Keegan who died in  Africa June 2008. Arcana would like to extend their sympathy to Trents family and friends.

Allianz Business to Arts Award – Accenture CCD

To truly appreciate and understand the impact of the huge event that was the Accenture CCD would take to long describe on this website.  However, it shook the foundations of what people percieve to be a Corporate day or event. Please ring us for more information and we’d be delighted to share with you what turned out to be an Allianz Business to Arts Award winning experience.  If your company is forward thinking and progressive  – this type of event is for you.

NUI Galway Alumni Awards Gala Ball

Arcana were delighted to perform once again at the NUI Galway Alumni Awards Ball in 2007.  We devised a new show for the discerning audience. The show included a variety of disciplines including ballet, circus skills, drumming and animated puppetry. In 2008 Arcana were proud to produce, stage manage and event manage the entire event for the Alumni Awards.

Clarinbridge Oyster Festival

She’s a lady…..so sang Massive Head Tom Jones as this years Clarinbridge Oyster Festival Queen made her way into the marquee. She wasn’t alone, accompanied by a fleet of fairies, she sat high upon her wooden sleigh pulled by half-man, half bull -Taine. Fairies paved with the way with flower petals. As always we thorougly enjoyed working with the Clarinbridge team and wish them every continued success with their festival.

MAY-hem! ARCANA enjoys a fast and fun month!

May saw Arcana unleash some of it’s newest creations onto the unsuspecting public. We performed at the 2007 Business2 Arts Awards, the BLOOM Festival in Phoenix Park, the Kenmare Summer Festival and Bord Bia’s Marketplace to name only some. We created photo shoots for and got into the National Newspapers for the National Concert Hall, Ireland Airport West, The Western Development Commission and The Volvo Ocean Yacht Race.

Jamesons Irish Whiskey

A mixture of fire, drums, stilting and the massive heads seduced the crowds away from the exotic tents full to the brim of champers and cocktails to get a taste of genuine Irish craic.

Rugby Rhythms at Thomand Park

Arcana’s drummers were asked to perform in front of a capacity crowd of 14,000 before the kickoff, and there is no doubt but that the crowd LOVED the high-spirited and solid drumming which got them in just the right mood for the performance. There really is something special about Munster Rugby, and it was our great privilege to be a part of that on the day.

The Táin Festival, Dundalk, Co. Louth

Queen Medb and Cuchulainn, two of the major protagonists in the story, performed on stilts, whilst some of their celtic warriors also did battle. The Celtic Warriors also juggled and performed fire poi for added visual impact. The famous Brown Bull of Cooley itself also appeared, in the form of a half man/half bull character. With an appearace from the Fir Bolgs, the famous tribe of warriors from Connacht – Ferdiad, one of the Cúchulainn’s opponents, was one of the Fir Bolg – the stage was set for a truly dramatic performance. The atmosphere was heightened by the rhythmic playing of the MacTeo drummers, who will built a real sense of drama and resonated the sounds of combat to a traditional Irish music backing track. The crowds just loved it!

Fire and Ice at the Radisson

Based around the theme of Ice characters, such as the beautiful Ice Princess, a ballerina cared for by a warm, cuddly Snowman, and protected by the stilting Ice King and Queen, the show is a real spectacle, with a wondeful soundtrack. Also featured in the performance is the Ice Diva, a wonderful creation of a opera-siging Diva who emerges from her shell to perform a wonderful aria for the audience, before disappearing back down into her shell again. And on the basis that opposites attract, the remainder of the show features the red-shot hoola-hoop antics of a she-devil, and the wonderful rhythmic drumming of our Fire Devils, who perform to a stirring soundtrack, and the performers finally make their way through the audience in a parade of Fire and Ice, led by our giant Santas, and Santa’s elves. It looks great, it sounds great, and audiences are loving it!

Halloween fun at Jetland

Our performers – including our own very own “monsters” the Fir Bolg, and our Good Fairy and Bad Witch – were there to entertain young and old alike. We organised storytelling sessions for the children, as well as art workshops, which allowed children to give full rein to their imaginations and learn new skills in the making of masks and other Halloween props. A special atmosphere was created in Jetland by our drummers, who alerted everyone to the fact that workshops and storytelling sessions were about to start and the children were simply enchanted by all the activities laid on especially for them. But as we all know, when the children are happy, the adults are too, so MacTeo were appreciated just as much by the parents as they were by the kids! We had a great time, and we KNOW the children did too!

Lights, Camera, Action.. on “The Tudors”

The series in question is “The Tudors”, a production starring Jonathan Rhys Myers, and the episode which featured the MacTeo actors was directed by Ciaran Donnelly. Our performers spent two days in Dublin, and greatly enjoyed the experience of working with the production company and its crew. It promises to be a wonderful series, and we are delighted to have been a part of it.

RYDER CUP OPENING CEREMONY BLOWS EVERYONE AWAY!

It was one of the biggest events that MacTeo has ever participated in, and after months of rehearsals and preparations, it was great to finally deliver the wonderfully spectacular opening sequence to one of the largest outdoor entertainment spectacles in the world this year. Devised by Els Comediants, and featuring a central theme of the Celtic gods playing golf with the planets, the entire effect was visually stunning, and the marvellous musical theme accompanying it was equally mesmerising. Our Celtic Gods, all nine of them, and standing 25ft above the ground, were really eyecatching as they swung their mightly staffs in the direction of the 9 planets of the solar system, with one planet making its way up a ramp and on to a spectacular stage, where it stayed for the duration of the performance. Inflatable balls with performers inside them added to the visual feast, and our Celtic dragons and flags, as well as a giant horse, which participated in the wonderful dance sequence staged by CoisCéim, saw to it that the name MacTeo is once again on everyone lips as the company that can rise to the big events, and deliver a premier performance of world-class standards. It was a marvellous day, and we were really proud to be a part of it – and eternally grateful to the Gods for keeping Gordon out of our way for just that 70 minutes that we needed!

Ryder Cup Gala Dinner

Dressed in golfing attire dating to the late 1920s – the period when the Ryder Cup competition first began – our human “statues” proved to be a real talking point at the event which saw a select gathering of the golfing and business community in Ireland designed to welcome the two teams to Ireland, and give them their first real taste of Ireland’s “Cead Míle Fáilte” – “One hundred thousand welcomes”. The four statues were positioned on plinths, and assumed a variety of golfing poses, which they then changed on cue to another pose. The costumes – designed by award-winning designer Sinéad Cuthbert – were beautiful, and meticulous in every aspect of their design, right down to the antique golf bags and clubs used by the golfing statues. It was a pleasure to have been invited to appear at this exclusive dinner, but the best was yet to come, when we performed at the Opening Ceremony of the Ryder Cup, the ver next day!

We’re off to the Ryder Cup!

It has take months of hard work and meticulous preparations, but we are now only 24 hours away from the spectacular Opening Ceremony of the Ryder Cup 2006. We are primed and ready – and the only thing we need now is the weather! When the attached photograph of one of our MacTeo golfers was taken, the sun was shining on the K Club – hopefully Hurrican Gordon will leave us alone long enough for us to perform the wonderful piece we have been working on in collaboration with Els Comediants – here’s to a great event!…and watch this space for some behind-the-scenes photos when we return to Galway on Friday!

COUNTDOWN TO RYDER CUP

The precise details of what the performance at the Opening Ceremony has in store for the estimated audience of 1 billion TV viewers in 150 countries worldwide are being kept firmly under wraps, but we can reveal that the performance will have a distinctive Irish feel to it, and that the costumes, masks and props will look amazing. Our Costume and Set Department are working intensely at the moment to ensure that everything looks just perfect on the day, and our performers are gearing themselves up for the performance of a lifetime in front of one of the biggest audiences we have ever performed for. And if that wasn’t enough, here are some of the logistical details which we can share with you: · 300 cast and crew involved in Opening Ceremony · 2,000 yards of material used to make the costumes · 700 costume items to be worn · 100 jars of face and body paint used · 1,000 buttons sewn onto costumes . 5,000 litres of water, 3,600 sandwiches, 1,000 cups of tea & coffee consumed each day by cast and crew during rehearsals. So now you know!

Rhythmin’ Roses – again!

MacTeo percussion director and General Manager Johnny Donnelly, and his team of skilled (and very happy it must be said!) drummers, had the enviable task of teaching thirty beautiful girls how to beat out a rhythm on a drum to a pre-recorded soundtrack. All the Roses were enthusiastic pupils, and the energy and sheer exhuberence they put into the workshop was quite remarkable. The audience and festival organisers were charmed, the Roses were thrilled, and the photographers and TV cameramen had a field day, with lots of wonderful images to be had. It is always a pleasure to work with such wonderful clients, and Newbridge Silverwear were just fantastic to work for, as always. Roll on next year!

Indoor golfers clown around at Liffey Valley

As part of its entertainment programme for customers, Liffey Valley Shopping Centre asked MacTeo to introduce the art of putting to the thousands who frequent the shopping centre each weekend – and MacTeo found a unique way to do just that! Our “golfing goofs” were on hand to teach the finer points of putting the small white ball in the round hole, and would-be golfers, young and old, had a lot of fun trying out their newly acquired skills.

All heart!

The Croí Raceday Event at the Annual Galway Races, is now well-established as the ‘Ultimate Racing Experience’. When Croí wanted to publicise their Croí Hospitality Pavilion at the Races this year they called on MacTeo, and our “doctors” were delighted to bring home to people that looking after the West’s cardiology needs is a BIG commitment – and needs a LOT of heart! The event was a resounding success, as always, and we are always happy to work with the great team at Croí – keep up the good work guys!

Pirate Invasion at Howth Castle

MacTeo were invited to perform at a Summer Party organised at Howth Castle, and given the castle’s coastal location, it seemed natural that a pirate theme would be the order of the day! Our pirates, headed by the beautiful – and deadly! – Grace O’Malley entertained guests with their witty banter and a display of their fighting skills. Of course the Pirate Queen was also a great fan of music and merriment, so she brought along a talented group of jugglers, stiltwalkers, musicians and dancers, who entertained guests as they enjoyed a sumptuous seafood buffet in the grounds of the castle. The sun shone, the sunset was spectacular, and the guests throughly enjoyed the event – and Gráinne Mhaol and her trusty pirates made a whole host of new friends on the east coast.

The Ryder Cup comes to Ireland – and MacTeo will be there!

Minister for Arts, Sports and Tourism, Mr John O’Donoghue TD presided at the launch of the Ryder Cup Official Programme of Events which took place in CHQ, Dublin Docklands, along with MC for the event, Sharon Ní Bheoláin – and as one of the companies contracted to provide entertainment at the Ryder Cup MacTeo was were there too!Following months of creative and logistical planning, MacTeo are delighted to announce that we have been commissioned to perform at the Ryder Cup Opening Ceremony, which will take place at the K Club on Thursday September 21st next. At the launch of the Ryder Cup Official Programme of Events MacTeo were announced as one of the performance groups to be featured in what is promising to be a truly spectacular show, which will be broadcast to a worldwide audience of millions, and we are delighted to be performing alongside internationally renowed performance groups of the calibre of Els Comediants and CoisCéim Dance Theatre. Preparations for the Opening Ceremony are well advanced, and we at MacTeo are truly honored to have been chosen to perform at what is going to be the biggest performance event of the year – and we hope to bring our own unique brand of magic and energy to the extravaganza.

Lording it at Adare Manor

The event in question was a banquet organised by Ovation for one of their clients at Adare Manor – and they wanted their guests to be greeted in true style. Enter Lord and Lady Dunraven, suitably attired and suitably regal in their bearing and manner as they welcomed guests to “their” ancestral home. Being greeted by the Lord and Lady of the manor in sumptuous period clothing was certainly a wonderful way to set the tone for the evening, and the guests were delighted to have a really good photo opportunity to record also. Our Lord and Lady Dunraven fully immersed themselves in the roles, and we would like to thank Ovation, and the management and staff of Adare Manor, for making our performance there so enjoyable.

Croquet on the Lawn – at Eyre Square!

The Great Southern Hotel decided to celebrate the re-opening of this wonderful new facility by hosting a garden party, complete with tea and scones on the lawn, croquet, and a whole host of Victorian characters – an echo back to the original Victorian origins of the Great Southern Hotel and the Eyre Square Park as it then was. Hundreds of people were invited into the hotel for complimentary afternoon tea, and they also got to try their hand at the game of croquet, under the expert guidance of our MacTeo character actors, who lent a real air of excitement, colour and atmosphere to the day.

Carnival atmosphere at launch of NCH Programme

TV and Radio sports personality George Hook officially launched this year’s Programme, and he was clearly very taken with our colourful Carnival Queens, who helped bring a real element of drama and excitement to the launch, which was held at the NCH at Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin. It is a truly marvellous programme, with artists from all around the world performing at this wonderful venue over the next twelve months. We wish the NCH every success with this exciting programme, and thank them for allowing us to be part of this enjoyable event.

Tiger Beer Launch

Tiger Beer organised a launch of their product in Ireland, and the event was truly colourful and full of the spirit of Thailand, the home of Tiger Beer. Our Taiko drums struck just the right oriental note as our drummers performed at the launch, which was held at the Odeon Bar in Dublin.

The Moulin Rouge comes to Cavan!

British Telecom were celebrating the amalgamation of BT Northern Ireland into BT Ireland, and Ovation Northern Ireland organised a fun teambuilding day for the company in the Slieve Russell Hotel in Co. Cavan. The luxurious surroundings of this beautiful hotel provided a perfect background to the Moulin Rouge extravaganza staged by MacTeo – and the audience loved it! Our actors, performers and musicians recreated the raw energy and sheer fun of the Moulin Rouge, and it was impossible not to be swept up in the sheer energy of the performance – hence the very laudable efforts of some of the audience to master the Can Can! We had a really great time, and thankfully so did our audience – our sincere thanks to all concerned.

Whitewater Launch

Jugglers, caricaturists, fire performers, stiltwalkers, trick cyclists, and much, much more – you name it, we provided the top class performers who well and truly entertained the crowds at this major launch event – and the crowds were certainly enormous! The success of the launch exceeded all expectations, and the entertainment packages we provided over the initial opening days of the centre opening were extremely popular with the large numbers who packed Whitewater, and certainly added to the “buzz” created by the opening of this wonderful new facility in Naas.

Lottery at Liffey Valley

Since the lottery revolves around customers revealing a “Golden Key” on special lottery cards which are distributed free around the shopping centre, our launch had a distinctly golden theme to it. Comprising our stilting Golden Princess, and our mischevious Golden Angel, we topped it all with our Golden Juggler, juggling -what else! – golden balls! The top prize in the lottery is a Nissan Micra Sport car, and we wish all the competitors the very best of luck – hopefully a little of that MacTeo gold will rub off on you!

St. Patrick’s Day comes early – in London!

A group of 15 performers travelled to London to perform on the streets of London, and we had a truly great time, and created a real focal point in the parade. Thousands turned out for the parade and festival in central London, which began at Hyde Park corner before streaming merrily into Trafalgar Square. Organised to mark the contribution to the city of the Irish community, the parade and festival were overseen by the mayor, Ken Livingstone, and Sinn Féin deputy leader Martin McGuinness. The atmosphere was great, and the colour and spectacle of our circus-themed performance went down a treat with the audiences who lined the streets.

Go Johnny Go!

Apart from music, Johnny’s other passion is running, and he has taken on an amazing challenge in order to do something equally amazing. The Hot and Cold Challenge will see him take on the Sahara Marathon (80 miles over 4 days across the desert in +45degrees of heat). Three weeks later he will tackle the North Pole Marathon (26.2 miles in temperatures of –50 degrees) – this marathon alone is reckoned to be one of the toughest in the world. And as if that wasn’t enough, two days later his third marathon will take him to the place which really inspired him to take on this incredible challenge – South Africa, where he will undertake the Two Oceans Ultra Marathon. This last marathon, all 34.8 miles of it uphill (its official – he IS mad!) will bring him to the place which first inspired him to fundraise by running this trio of marathons – the Imizamo Yethu township on the outskirts of Cape Town in South Africa. Johnny completed the Two Oceans Marathon last year, and whilst running through the township in his Irish jersey, he was struck by the number of locals who cheered him on saying “Thank you for our homes, you have saved our children..”. He realised they associated his being Irish with the Niall Mellon Township Challenge, the charity which raises money to build proper homes for the community of Imizamo Yethu, who live in what effectively are shacks. The Niall Mellon Township Challenge has already built 270 houses to date, out of a total of 450 houses which are planned in Phase One. Johnny raised over €150,000 for different charities last year by running 6 different marathons. This year he has set himself the target of raising €50,000 for the Niall Mallon Towhnship project. Knowing Johnny, he’ll do it. So, the only rhythms we’ll we hearing from him over the coming week will be the sound of his feet pounding the desert, but we are all proud of him and wish him the very best of luck with this very worthy project. You can follow Johnny’s progress on this amazing challenge by logging on to www.hotandcoldchallenge.com

Congratulations Lucia!!

Lucia Evans won the “You’re a Star” final in spectacular style on Sunday 5th March, and everyone here at MacTeo was absolutely thrilled by her success. Lucia has worked with us on many occasions in the past, and apart from the fact that she was a total pleasure to work with, it was clear to us all that she was a really special performer with a HUGE amount of talent. Now the whole of Ireland knows just what she’s capable of, and with any luck the whole WORLD will follow suit, and Ireland will have another international star to be proud of. All of us here at MacTeo would like to wish Lucia every possible success in the future, and to congratulate her sincerely on her fantastic performance throughout the “You’re a Star” series. She richly deserved her win, she’s a great girl, and we are so proud of her. Good for you Lucia!..and up Galway!

The Best of Irish Writers at The Ireland Funds Launch

The Ireland Funds hosted the launch of a two week exhibition and book on renowned artist John Kingerlee, on 13th February 2006 – and MacTeo were delighted to perform at the launch. At the event, which was opened by well-known New York Art Critic Bill Zimmer at the Leinster Gallery, Dublin, followed by a dinner in the Mansion House, MacTeo drummers were on hand to welcome the guests to this prestigious event. Once inside the guests were charmed to be greeted by some of Ireland’s finest writers – James Joyce, Brendan Behan and Oscar Wilde: or rather their manifestation in the form of the famous MacTeo Massive Heads! Our great writer characters were much in demand for photographs, and their animated interaction with guests greatly added to the atmosphere of the evening, where a mixture of culture and fun was very much the order of the day. Our photo shows Joycean scholar Sen. David Norris chatting with “James Joyce” at the launch.

Arts Council appointment for former MacTeo GM

The Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Mr John O’Donoghue TD, made the announcement today that John Crumlish is to be one of five new members appointed to the Arts Council for a five year term. John founded MacTeo in 1995, and steered the company throught its early years, before leaving the position of General Manager in 2002 to take up his appointment as Manager of the Galway Arts Festival. He retains an active interest in MacTeo however, serving as a much-valued member of our Board of Directors. We wish him the very best of luck in his new role, and feel sure that he will bring his usual degree of hard work, vision and innovativeness to his work with the Arts Council.

MacTeo are BIG rugby fans!

MacTeo were able to “loan” some pretty formidable players to the Irish rugby team for their game against Italy on 4th February. Kitted out in their O2 jerseys (O2 are the official mobile telecommunications partner to the IRFU), our “prop forwards” were very much in evidence as they welcomed the hoards of fans who descended on Landsdowne Road for the big match.

BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition 2006

MacTeo was delighted to be asked to perform at the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition opening ceremony, which was televised live on RTE One on Wednesday 11th December 2006. The MacTeo drummers gave a spirited performance of an original piece of music composed by our Musical Director Johnny Donnelly, and the performance certainly provided the WOW factor for both the studio audience and the viewing public at home. It was a wonderful show, hosted by Ray D’Arcy and the reigning Rose of Tralee, Aoibheann Ní Shúilleabháin, and the high energy buzz to the event – complete with hair-raising experiments! – was just the kind of event which MacTeo loves to be a part of, and we really enjoyed our participation in it.

Angels and Devils New Year’s Eve Ball

The Angels and Devils Ball was pitted the goodies and the baddies against each other as the New Year’s Eve revellers decided whether they wanted to be very, very good or very, very bad – and our performers ensured that there was a case to be made for BOTH kinds of behaviour! It was a great way for everyone to start the New Year, and we wish all our customers and crew a very Happy New Year – here’s to a great 2006!

Accenture in Croke Park

The event in question was a major teambuilding day organised by Accenture, one of the world’s largest management consultancy groups, and the venue was Croke Park, Dublin. The day-long programme of events, featuring drumming workshops, Acrobats, and inevitably, given the venue, some Gaelic footballers – except these guys were 9ft tall! – was devised and co-ordinated by MacTeo. The upbeat atmosphere of the day, and the lively and entertaining performances from our MacTeo team went down a storm with the guests attending the event, and the fact that everyone got to participate in the performances made it a really special experience for all concerned. It was a wonderful event, and MacTeo were proud to have been a part of it.

Gaelic Games Playstation Launch

Some pretty hefty GAA players, members of Team HMV, looked like they meant business at the launch, but our trusty MacTeo Referee was on hand to keep the players, and the invited guests, in order on the day – all in the spirit of fun of course!

Santa Claus is coming to town..!

With the festive season almost upon us, MacTeo is set for an extremely busy Christmas period. Christmas began in earnest with no less than THREE different Santa’s Grottos opening on the same weekend, in Liffey Valley Dublin, Mahon Point Cork, and Eyre Square Galway. MacTeo brought our own brand of magic to the launch of each of these grottos, on the 10th, 11th and 12th November respectively, with Santa taking pride of place on his wonderful sleigh – but if the truth be known it was our 10ft tall Rudolph, with his shiny red nose, who won the hearts of everyone present. Sadly, there is only one Rudolf, and he will now take up residence at the Eyre Square Shopping Centre in Galway until Christmas Eve, when his real work begins in earnest!

NBCRI Ball at Dublin Castle

Guests were greeted on their arrival by a number of MacTeo characters dressed in Restoration costume, who interacted with guests, and provided a little fun and flamboyance to the proceedings. It was a wonderful event in aid of a wonderful cause, and the venue was magnificent – our MacTeo “Dandys” were delighted to be a part of it!

Knock Airport Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Knock Airport recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, and in the process of so doing decided to rebrand itself as Ireland’s West International Airport Knock. MacTeo were on hand to help celebrate this unique event. A specially commissioned choral piece, entitled “Going West” was written and performed by five MacTeo actors, in the style of ancient Greek drama, and was admired by all as a striking evocation of the unique place which is the West of Ireland. In addition, MacTeo performers dressed in suitably futuristic costume, gave guests at the event an idea of what air stewardesses would look like in another 20 years time – when hopefully MacTeo will once again be invited to celebrate yet another important anniversary! MacTeo was delighted to be part of this special occasion and wishes Ireland’s West International Airport Knock continued success in the future.

Lady with the Lamp

The Irish Cancer Society’s “Nightingale Ball” will be held on Friday 11th November, in the Four Seasons Hotel, Ballsbridge, Dublin, with all monies raised going to the Society’s Night Nursing Service. So who better to launch this Gala Ball than the most famous nurse of them all, Florence Nightingale. The Press Launch of the event was held in St. Stephen’s Green on Thursday 13th October, and MacTeo were delighted to be asked to create a costume, and the overall “look” of this legendary figure. Designer Mags Linnane created a look that was exquisite in both its simplicity and detail, and model Corina Grant did an excellent job in bringing this wonderful costume to life. A beautiful costume, an inspiring character and a worthy cause – our thanks to the Irish Cancer Society for bringing us on board, and we wish the Nightingale Ball every success on the 11th November.

Making Galway Proud

For the second year in a row, the Making Galway Proud Ball completely sold out weeks before the event. Coordinator of the event, James Harris, stated that “When choosing autism for this year’s project, we never expected the interest, support, and excitement from people touched by autism in Galway, we at Making Galway Proud are in no doubt that we chose the right cause for our 2005 campaign.” They certainly did. They also called on just the right people to set the scene for this uniquely “Galway” event. MacTeo’s team of set designers and builders constructed an amazing vista of two sets of arched windows, from which could be viewed two completely different, but iconic, images of Galway life – a scene from the well-known Long Walk and Spanish Arch, and a wonderful scene of Galway Hookers sailing on the bay – the archetypal “red sails in the sunset” image which people so associate with Galway. It was a stunning set, and a wonderful event – we were very pleased to be a part of it.

BT supports NBCRI Event

Brown Thomas Galway and the NBCRI provided a unique evening of private shopping with 20% of all sales on the evening donated to the important work of the NBCRI. The event was a wonderful way for shoppers to kick off their weekend, and they were welcomed in style to BT Galway by our MacTeo drummers – stylishly attired in tuxedos and with the signature Pink Sash of the NBCRI clearly in evidence! Inside, our stylish kagamushis provided a stunning image of style, grace and sophistication, which beautifully set off the stylish surroundings of the newly refurbished Level 2 of the store. With the best of wine and food on offer, not to mention the best of entertainment, this was a special event, for a very important cause, and the evening was a resounding success. MacTeo is very proud to have been a part of this wonderful initiative.

Galway Oyster Festival Ball 2005

After yet another fabulous year of fun, frolics and the downing of large quantities of succulent oysters, the revellers at the Galway Oyster Festival were just in form to kick their heels up at the highlight of the Festival, the Festival Ball, which was held at the Radisson SAS Hotel, Galway. So, what better way to round off the proceedings for another year than a 1920s themed Ball, where MacTeo injected their own brand of style and “anything goes” to the proceedings. Featuring a sumptuous 1920s art deco set, designed and built by MacTeo, and an array of performers in luminous costumes, the atmosphere was perfect for what proved to be a truly wonderful evening.

Launching on the Liffey

The “Spirit of Docklands”, the new 50 seater craft commissioned by the DDDA, was introduced to the people of Dublin by a stunning performance from MacTeo. Taking to the water on a floating stage, the MacTeo performers escorted the boat as she made her way up the River Liffey to Batchelors Walk from the DDDA headquarters at the Custom House Dock. For a time it looked like the city was being invaded again by yet another wave of Vikings, as the MacTeo performers wielded their fearsome weapons, but, as the drummers beat out their energetic rhythms, and the more well-known “faces” of famous dublin characters such as U2, writers James Joyce, Brendan Behan and Oscar Wilde accompanied the main floating stage in adjoining boats, it was clear that this was a far more benign invasion, and that these visitors came in peace – and in the spirit of fun! The Dublin quays were a riot of colour and rhythm, with passers-by stopped in their tracks by the performance on the water. We wish the DDDA, and Killary Cruises who operate the “Spirit of Docklands”, every success – MacTeo are delighted to have played a part in introducing this wonderful new tourist amenity to the people of Dublin.

An event with a real buzz!

Recognised as one of the biggest conferences every to visit Ireland, the Apimondia Conference, otherwise known as the National Bee Keepers Convention, came to the RDS International Convention Centre in Dublin from 21st to 26th August. This extraordinary event attracted over 4,000 delegates from all over the world. MacTeo’s creative department were asked to create a specific display which was on view throughout the conference centre, featuring a spectacular beehive costume complete with honeycomb and a number of Native Black Irish Bees. The press coverage which our costume received is a testament to how visually appealing this creation was, and we are delighted that this coverage significantly added to the profile which the event received in the Irish media.

Rhythmin’ Roses!

The sight of 30 beautiful roses drumming in unison is not something you see every day, but on 17th August last that’s just what an audience of invited guests and a large Press contingent got when the 30 contestants in this year’s Rose of Tralee festival visited one of the Festival’s main sponsors, Newbridge Silver. MacTeo were on hand to welcome the Roses to their first public engagement of the week-long festival, and our drummers, flares and dancing potatotes (!) ensured that the Festival was off to a flying start! In the beautiful surrounds of the Newbridge Silver showroom, the Roses also got a chance to display their musical talents when they were given a drumming Workshop by MacTeo’s Johnny Donnelly. The roses were taught a simple drum rhythm, which, after a little practice, they were able to perform to a backing track of lilting Irish music, which had feet tappin’ and hands clappin’! The girls were great, and we wish they all the very best in this year’s competition.

Dublin Horse Show 2005

The Dublin Horse Show is one of the biggest events in the Irish sporting calendar, and once again MacTeo were on hand to ensure that everyone was in the mood for enjoying themselves. Throughout the week our performers delighted the crowds, whether it be as large clown puppets, magic chickens, rugby puppets and a host of other characters. We were on hand for walkabouts each day, and everyone wanted their photo taken with the MacTeo puppets – and we were more than happy to oblige!

Liffey Valley Makeover

As part of its extensive entertainment programme for its customers, Liffey Valley shopping centre was determined to leave no-one out of the entertainment package – including the “desperate housewives”! MacTeo were commissioned to ensure that there was something for everyone, and to this end, we arranged for the well-known television presenter Caroline Morahan, of “Off the Rails” fame, to be on hand on 30/31 July to oversee some truly amazing “make-overs” for some ladies who had decided that their overall look needed a bit of a revamp. From hair, to make-up, clothes, everything was on hand to transform the tired, stressed-out moms.To keep the kiddies entertained, MacTeo also organised face-painting, and even a workshop on face-painting, so that parents could learn the skills to do it themselves. All in all everyone went home happy – with pretty faces and happy faces all round!

Galway Race Ball 2005

The Galway Race Ball is one of the highlights of the famous Galway Races, and the Race Committee wanted an event which complemented the unique spirit of excitement and abandon which characterises the races – and we managed to do just that. Based around a Greco-Roman theme, our set dressing recreated a Greco-Roman temple, and guests were greeted by Bacchus, the Roman god of wine, and Roman slaves. MacTeo drummers led the guests in to dinner, and once the guests were seated Bacchus entered the “temple” held aloft on his throne by four slaves and the slavemaster, who fed him grapes as he greeted the cheering masses!. After dinner our drummers once again performed an exhilarating floorshow, and the mood then changed as our three barbershop singers entertained the guests with a medley of accapella popular songs.

Red Bull Air Race 2005

It was fast, furious and specatacular – and MacTeo was part of it. The Red Bull Air Race 2005 is attracting audiences of thousands throughout the world, and MacTeo were invited to perform at the opening ceremony of the Irish leg of this years Race, which took place at the Rock of Cashel on 16th of July last. Featuring some of the best pilots in the world, and some truly hair-raising flying and incredible aerial stunts, it is no surprise that this was an event which would attract a capacity crowd, and so it did – 60,000 of them! Despite the bad weather on the day, MacTeo’s drummers performed a passionate, energetic set, which really got the audience revved up for the Race that was to follow. The event was televised throughout Europe and on TV3, with the MacTeo drummers featuring prominently.

Young Presidents Organisation

MacTeo were delighted to be a part of the extensive entertainment programme planned around the visit to Ireland of the Young Presidents Organisation. In a packed and truly innovative programme for these high achievers, MacTeo provided entertainment for a special event held at Ashford Castle. Our actors and performers entertained the guests both inside and outside the castle, with dancing potatoes popping up in the oddest of places, and a wonderful mediaeval-themed banquet with Celtic warrior queens, jesters, acrobats, drummers and a whole host of other weird and wonderful characters. There was also something for the teenagers, as the younger members of the group were given a drumming workshop by MacTeo’s own Johnny Donnelly. Whilst their parents enjoyed a sumptuous banquet, the youngsters learned a brand new skill and it was with great pride and enthusiasm that the young drummers performed their newly learned drum piece in front of their parents and the rest of the assembled audience as the Grand Finale to the banquet. A wonderful event, and a wonderful audience – we were very proud to be part of it.

Story Tellers

June Rogers and MacTeo Story Tellers joined forces in Liffey Valley this weekend. In honour of Hans Christian Andersons Bicentenary they re-acted the classics from the authors extensive collection. Such favourites as Thumbelina and The Emperors New Clothes captured the imaginations of the children as they have done over the last two centuries.

Bill Clinton Rehab Charity Ball

On 23rd May last the Bill Clinton Rehab Charity Ball was held at the City West hotel in Dublin and MacTeo were invited to perform for the former American President. The drummers performed to a piece entitled by Pat Kenny ‘The Presidents Lambeg’.

U2 Fever!

With all of Ireland caught up with U2 fever at the moment, MacTeo were pleased to play our part in celebrating the biggest rock band in the world. Our U2 Massive Heads experienced just a taste of the passionate fan base which the superband inspire when we performed at the HMV stores in Grafton Street and Henry Street on 24th June last. Hundreds of fans immediately gathered outside the stores, and U2 mania was in full flight! The event was recorded by, amongst others, Sky News, who covered the Massive Heads’ appearance on their evening news bulletin. As well as our HMV appearances, the U2 heads also appeared at a fundraising event for REHAB and at an RTE U2 party in the days leading up to the first BIG concert at Croke Park on Friday 24th June. We were more than proud to have been able to participate in the preliminaries of the event of the year in Dublin – U2: a truly MASSIVE band, and we hope our Massive Heads did them proud!

Business2Arts Launch

We were delighted to be invited to perform at the presentation of the Allianz Business2Arts Awards for 2005, which took place at the O’Reilly Hall, UCD on 31st May last. The Awards Ceremony took place In the presence of the Minister for Arts, Sports and Tourism, Mr. John O’Donoghue T.D., and a host of major Irish business people, who have distinguished themselves by their sponsorship of the Arts, or their collaboration and creativity in business and arts partnerships. MacTeo performed a special piece entitled “Cirque du Craze”, a fabulously colourful collection of extraordinary interactive circus characters, which suited perfectly the ambience of the venue and the theme of the night….and after all, doesn’t everyone love a circus?

Liffey Valley Shopping Centre

As part of their May Bank Holiday celebrations, Liffey Valley Shopping Centre asked us to provide entertainment for the crowds of shoppers who descended on the Shopping Centre during the Bank Holiday weekend – and MacTeo was more than happy to oblige! Our team of stilters, actors, puppeteers, Massive Heads (was that the Gallagher Brothers I just saw?) and acrobats provided a weekend-long extravaganza, which kept the crowds well and truly entertained. The entertainment programme really added to the atmosphere in the Shopping Centre, and the reaction from our audiences was fantastic!

Flying the Flag!

MacTeo were asked to perform at a prestigious event at Dublin Castle recently by one of Ireland’s leading event management companies. Our performers were asked to perform a flag bearing ceremony dressed as representatives of the Irish defense forces. Our actors acquited themselves with distinction, as befitted the occasion, and the tricolour was raised with due ceremony, bearing in mind the solemnity which the occasion demanded. Our Costume Department also rose to the occasion with style, with our actors truly looking the part in fully authentic costumes.

Fáilte Ireland Workshop

MacTeo brought our unique brand of colour and spectacle to MEITHEAL 2005: the Irish Tourism Trade Fair organised by Fáilte Ireland at the RDS in Dublin on 9th May. The Workshop is one of the major tourism promotion events in the annual Irish tourism calendar with hundreds of delegates attending from around the world. Our puppets, stilting flamingos, actors and drummers were on hand to entertain the crowds and bring a smile to the faces of the hardworking delegates.

Launch of N.C.H. International Season

MacTeo were on hand to announce details of the National Concert Hall’s new International season at the N.C.H. on Wednesday 27th April. Not surprisingly, the international dimension of the programme proved fascinating to our Russian Firebird, seen here perusing some of the programme highlights with T.V. personality Gay Byrne.

Galway Arts Festival New York Program Launch

Tuesday 20th April saw MacTeo in New York with the Galway Arts Festival and Ireland West Tourism at the Press Launch of this years artistic program. The Kagamushi characters chosen for the photo shoot had fantastic views of Manhattan from the famous Sky Bar. Pictured outside Grand Central Station from left to right, Petal Pilley, MacTeo; John O’Donoghue, Tourism Minister; Rachel Towey, MacTeo; Jim McGuigan, Minister for Tourism N.I., and John Concannon, CEO of Ireland West Tourism.

John Hancock Event

MacTeo were delighted to have been asked to co-ordinate the entertainment aspect of a major incentive group brought to Ireland by the American insurance giant John Hancock. Our participation in this welcome event at the RDS in Dublin, and gave the 380 American visitors a real “Taste of Ireland”. There to greet the guests were historical figures such as OSCAR WILDE, MICHAEL COLLINS, and of course Dublin’s own MOLLY MALONE! They also got to meet the inhabitants of a typical Irish village, including a FARMER AND HIS WIFE up at the RDS “for the Show!”, the local PARISH PRIEST, and a couple of madcap FISHERMEN – with many’s a tall tale to regale the visitors with! A talented PAVEMENT ARTIST recreated for our guests that classic image of the Ha’Penny Bridge illuminated at night, and our PAPER SELLER also set the scene for what was to come the following day, with his banner headline proclaiming “Dublin Castle surrenders after 800 year siege!” The following day, MacTeo were again co-ordinating the entertainment provided at Dublin Castle when a Gala Banquet was hosted for the John Hancock group. Guests were greeted by the MACTEO DRUMMERS who heralded their arrival, and at the entrance to the Castle were met by two MEDIAEVAL SENTRIES with their enormous IRISH WOLFHOUNDS by their sides. Inside, our FOOTMEN, BUTLER and HOUSEKEEPER greeted the guests and showed them to the lavishly appointed dining rooms, where they were royally treated to a banquet. Follwing dinner the guests were escorted into the castle courtyard by the MacTeo drummers, and were treated to a MILITARY TATTOO SPECTACULAR, which opened in appropriate military style with a full MARCHING PIPE BAND and which then featured a choreographed FLAG BEARERS display, performed by 20 CELTIC WARRIORS, following by the re-enactment of a CELTIC TRIBAL BATTLE, with broadswords and axes expertly wielded by our opposing tribes. The finale was a grand parade of all the performers, including the Celtic Tenors, who serenaded the guests from the Castle Clocktower. Two days later MacTeo were back again to provide 6 TRUMPET PLAYERS as they heralded the arrival of the guests at a lavish banquet at the O’Reilly Hall of U.C.D.

Daffodil Day

MacTeo were delighted to be involved in the launch of The Irish Cancer Society’s Daffodil Day in Dublin on 10th March with An Taoiseach Bertie Ahern. Our colourful costumes caught the eyes of the photographers and TV crews present. Our stilting Daffodils, accompanied by an incredibly cute troupe of “mini” daffodils, were a resounding success, and media coverage of the event ensured that the launch was featured in virtually every newspaper in the country the following day. It was an honour for us to be associated with such a worthy cause – and we are immensely proud of our daffodils!

Tourism Ireland Fair, Brussels

MacTeo performers have just returned from a highly successful participation as part of the Tourism Ireland Stand at the Salon de Vacances/Brussels Holiday Fair. The old and the new Ireland blended in a wonderful juxtaposition as St. Patrick and a Celtic warrior Queen flew the Irish flag alongside modern heroes Bono and The Edge from U2 (in the form of MacTeo “Massive Heads”). Our MacTeo characters gave the Belgian public a taste of what Ireland was all about – and they loved it!

The Diamond Ball

Truly an event which lived up to its name, the Diamond Ball was one of the most glittering events of the year. The major fundraising event of the Irish Special Olympics Committee took place in the SAS Radisson Hotel in Galway on Friday 21st January last. Designed entirely by MacTeo, and with a 1920s theme, the Ball featured spectacular sets, an array of wonderful talent, including internationally acclaimed dancer Gavin de Paor, all of which ensured that this was a night that would last long in the memories of those who were lucky enough to attend it.

‘In the Nuddie’

With only three weeks to go, our creative team are currently hard at work on our parade spectacle for the St. Patricks Festival, Ireland. Based on an interpretation of Hans Christian Anderson’s ‘The Emperors New Clothes’ our Emperor and his cohorts are starting to take shape, and we are really looking forward to introducing them to the people of Dublin on March 17th next. This will be one of the biggest parades of the year, and MacTeo is proud to be at the very heart of it!

Angels and Devils

The good, the bad – and the beautiful! – welcomed in the New Year at the “Angels and Devils” New Years Eve Ball at the Radissons SAS Hotel Galway. This once-off themed Ball was a spectacular success, as the revellers became participants in a fun-filled battle between the forces of good and evil. As the Angels and Devils vied to outdo each other as to who could have the most fun, it was the perfect way to say hello to 2005.

Bavaria

Work is now at an advanced stage on an exciting outdoor installation for one of East Germany’s largest and most prestigious theatres – Festspielhaus Neuschwantstein. MacTeo was commissioned to devise an installation to complement the new musical based on the life and times of Ludwig II of Bavaria. The setting, amongst the fairytale castles of the Rhine, is idyllic, and this is a project which we really look forward to see “in situ” in early March.