From top: Taoiseach Enda Kenny with US Vice President Joe Biden and actress Fiona Shaw and at the Kennedy Centre for the ‘Ireland 100’.
The Kennedy Centre, Washington DC
The sense of event was heightened by the presence of Vice President Biden and the taoiseach of Ireland, Enda Kenny, which meant the accompanying presence of airport-style security gates that kept the glittering audience waiting in line for minutes after the scheduled 8 o’clock start. We all wish that our government leaders would come to more arts events, but when they do it is certainly a hassle for everybody.
Fiona Shaw, the actress, was a buoyant master of ceremonies who was as natural and unaffected as it may be possible to be in an evening skirt, trying to keep a touch of class in this high-end variety show and then marshaling her own talents for a recitation of Yeats’s famous “Easter, 1916” (“A terrible beauty is born”) that was unquestionably the artistic highlight of the evening….