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WRITER: JESSICA SNOWDEN
CONTACT: LOIS GRAY
International Programs
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 335-2026
e-mail: lois-gray@uiowa.edu

Release: Oct. 18, 2000

Playwright Mike Finn to speak about his native Ireland Oct. 24

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- There's more to Ireland than leprechauns, rainbows and pots of gold. For example, there are Irish playwrights like Mike Finn, one of this year's International Writing Program (IWP) participants. Finn will present "Another Voice of the New and Buoyant Ireland" to the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council Tuesday, Oct. 24 at noon in the Rockwood Fellowship Hall of the Congregational Church, 30 N. Clinton St. The program is open to the public.

Finn, a native of Limerick, is praised for his ability to interpret the dynamics of the old and new Ireland. He has received honors for his plays as well as his work as a promoter of Irish culture. His play "Pigtown" was selected for performance in the prestigious international Dublin Stewart Parker Trust workshop at the Tyrone Guthrie Center in Ireland. Also, he was selected this year to receive an award for "Outstanding Contribution to the Culture Life of the City" from the Limerick Corporation.

Since 1980 Finn has been involved in cultural communication, as produced for Big L Radio. He has also worked as a freelance photographer, is a weekly columnist for the Limerick Post, and has acted in more than 30 theatre productions as well as television and films. In addition, he is the founder and director of the Island Theatre Company and the Umbrella Project Street Theatre Company.

Finn's repertoire of plays includes "The Crunch" (1992), "Charlie Chaplin's Mother was an Irishman" (1995), "Nevereverland" (1998), and "The Affair in the Square" (2000).

The deadline to register for the luncheon is noon Friday, Oct. 20. New Pioneer Co-op will cater the meal, and the cost is $6 for members and $7 for non-members. Checks may be written to the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council and mailed to ICFRC, 120 International Center, Iowa City, Iowa 52245-1802. For more information, call 335-0351. They are unable to take reservations by phone but last minute adjustments may be made.

Finn's presentation is co-sponsored by International Programs and the International Writing Program and is presented in part with the support of McDonald Optical Dispensary and Iowa State Bank & Trust. For those unable to attend, WSUI-AM (910) will carry this program Wednesday, Oct. 25 following the noon news.

The Iowa City Foreign Relations Council is a non-profit association of community and university people interested in learning more about U.S. foreign policy, world affairs and current global issues impacting world societies. The group provides members with the opportunity to hear more than 35 experts per year who visit the University of Iowa campus and the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area.

ICFRC is part of the UI International Programs, which consists of a number of offices, centers, degree programs, academic programs, research projects and services. Organized under the Associate Provost and Dean for International Programs, these units serve to further internationalize the campus and community and promote global scholarship, research and teaching.