Hi we're Leanne, Amy and Shauna, three girls from Laois trying to make a difference with Art. The Youth Rocks Arts is a arts centric festival in Portlaoise this July. We encompass visuals, music, fashion, theater, spoken word, written word, comedy, dance, film and circus.
Leanne Quinn - former chair of APA and events management guru extraordinaire. Leanne organised for first festival at 13 and is a self taught sound engineer and music fanatic. She's a hair dying, cider buying, band spying legend.
Amy El-Fehli - part-time waitress, part-time visionary. Amy is an artist/designer/sculptor/bad influence with grounding in a magical sinuous style of drawing. Use a translator though, she speaks in tongues.
Shauna Blanchfield - daydreamer, insomniac and occasional academic. Shauna plans with as much passion as she paints. She wings her way through life with the motto - 'If they don't think you’re crazy, you’re not doing it right.'
Leanne is taking care of music, with Meteor Award Winner Cathy Davey headlining the festival. In the true spirit of YRAF we’re holding a nationwide Battle of the Bands to find a support act. Leanne is also rocking an open air gig in Portlaoise with Irish and international acts.
Amy is investing in the arts, with a fashion show, theatre production and a series of exhibitions. As well as straight up brush and canvas artists we have performance art, installations, poetry readings, dance rehearsals and all the art you can squeeze into one town.
Shauna is sorting out the admin and events like camping, market trading, amusements and all the handshaking, smalltalking niceties.
The three of us have been working together since we were 13, teething our way through busking and exchanges. Now we’re ready to bring our unique approach to youth work, art, and events to you.
The main focus of the festival this year is to support and showcase amateur and unknown Irish and International talent across all art forms. A full schedule of exhibitions, poetry readings and performances will take place across Portlaoise in dedicated venues and temporary spaces. The festival is especially interested in young artists, since we have an average age of 19 (and a bit)
We are trying something new here and something very scary. 3 teenage girls are trying to make a difference to how we view Irish art. We want people to see the potential in our young artists and maybe give a few of our artists a chance to break into the upper reaches of Irish Artistic Society. We’re still looking for artists and volunteers, so feel free to join in.
YRAF is a non-profit festival, we're about the art. All Fund It money is going to admin, posters, flyers, lanyards, wristbands and brochures.
Any help you can give means the world to us, but better yet, if you can't donate to the festival, just come along and enjoy it.
Many Thanks, Shauna, Leanne and Amy
The Youth Rocks Arts Festival team.