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Silent Journeys – Kinnitty to Hollywood and Back

Published: 12th August 2015

The SECRETS OF OFFALY public art project reveals its second hidden facet on Sunday August 23rd in the village of Kinnitty.

Theatre maker Ciarán Taylor has been working with local residents to bring their Hollywood hero Rex Ingram-Hitchcock back to the village in a series of silent scenes inspired from his famous 1920’s movies.

Rex Ingram left Kinnitty and arrived into New York in 1911 on the RMS Baltic, when there was no shortage of Irishmen disembarking for a new life. Within 15 years he was one of the biggest Hollywood directors, and married Alice Terry, one of the most celebrated movies stars of that era. Renowned for his epic film the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse and for discovering Rudolf Valentino, the community of Kinnitty are bring their Hollywood hero home with live tableaux of iconic scenes from his films.

Commissioned by Offaly County Council (other projects are underway in Clara and Clonbullogue), Taylor will present a live event where those fortunate to be in attendance will go on a silent journey around the village to witness tango scenes, mystic prophesies, an evil magician, horses, musicians and more- all frozen in time to be captured on still film. Silent Journeys'follows a trail of indoor and outdoor scenes, finishing in the renowned Kinnitty Castle.

The images and a short documentary on the whole process will form part of an online exhibition later in the year.

Director-deviser Ciarán Taylor says: 'It's been a great fun community effort with over forty people involved in pulling off the live shoot of key moment's from Rex Ingram's greatest film.His imagination was fired by local characters returned from the Americas, and by locations around the village including the Kinnitty Pyramid. This project playfully places the exotic locations of his imagination back in the village where he grew up - the local pub becomes a seedy Buenos Ares port tavern, and the castle drawing room a Paris ballroom.'

For more information on this project, please contact arts@offalycoco.ie or 057 9357400

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