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DkIT Academics Awarded Funding for Science Opera Production

03 January 2024

Dundalk Institute of Technology are delighted to report that two staff members were recently awarded Irish Research Centre (IRC) New Foundations Funding to work on a Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) inspired project with community groups and Íontas Arts Centre in Castleblayney.

The two DkIT staff members who received this prestigious award are Dr Bridget Kelly from the Department of Life and Health science along with Dr Daithi Kearney from the Department of Creative Arts, Media and Music. They will both work with community groups and Íontas Arts Centre in Castleblayney to create a science opera. This STEAM project will allow local community members to use their creativity to produce an opera about a scientific topic that is of interest locally. The project will take place in Íontas, Castleblayney and over a number of weeks, participants will explore complex scientific ideas through storyline development all the way through to a final performance of the Opera at Íontas Theatre.

Dr Bridget Kelly commented that

“this project, based on the Write a Science Opera (WASO) approach to enquiry-based art, music and science education will enable participants from members of the local community to create an educational performance with support from scientists, teachers and various artists. The primary goal of this project is to enrich the lives of individuals through creative engagement and knowledge development, and it builds on experiences acquired working with colleagues in other European institutions as part of Erasmus+ funded projects involving DkIT”.

Dr Tim McCormac, Head of Research and Graduate Studies at DkIT also stated

“we are delighted to have received this foundation funding through the Irish research Council which will underpin the interdisciplinary nature of our research. This project cuts across traditional research discipline boundaries and will allow the cultivation of research and outreach between the Creative Arts and Science domains. The Institute would like to congratulate Dr Kelly and Dr Kearney on not only securing this funding but spear heading the STEAM agenda”.

David Maine, Íontas Arts Coordinator, added,

“It is often regarded that there is a divide between the Arts and Science communities, but nothing could be further from the truth. Both disciplines, as wide and varied as they are, engage in the pursuit of truth, often through theory and experimentation. Here at Íontas, we celebrate all forms of The Arts, whether theatrical, literary, visual or otherwise, and we consider this project as a rare and unmissable opportunity to extend this into the realms and infinite wonder of science. More importantly, as a community-based organization, we cannot wait to explore these themes through the engagement of our vibrant local community, while discussing and devising work based on relevant scientific topics in a fun and creative way.”

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