“The sun machine is coming down/and we’re gonna have a party”
If the very mention of David Bowie sends you into a sequinned alter-ego tizzy, then chances are you’re already buzzing for this month’s Dublin Bowie Festival.
Taking place in various cultural venues across the city from the 4-10 January, the DBF is a whirlwind tribute to one of the world’s most iconic musicians.
There’s brunch, there’s live interviews and there’s a lotta a LOTTA Bowie tunes. Here’s our top picks of must-see events.
Thursday 4th January
My Life with Bowie – An evening with Woody Woodmansey – The Sugar Club – €15
This year’s festival kicks off with the special appearance of Bowie drummer extraordinaire, Woody Woodmansey – backbone of the Spiders From Mars and current co-leader (with Tony Visconti) of the supergroup Holy Holy.
Woody will be interviewed on his groundbreaking years with Bowie by Irish Times music critic Tony Clayton-Lea and will be signing copies of his recently released autobiography, My Life With Bowie.
Friday 5th January
Veda Lady presents ‘Boys Keep Swinging’ – The George. 10pm. Free
Bowie fanatic and one of Ireland’s most fabulous drag queens, Veda Beaux Reves hosts a Bowie spectacular of glitter and glam in The George tonight in what’s sure to be one of the most talked about shows of the Festival.
Veda eloquently possesses the poise, physique and uninhibited glamour of Ziggy in his prime and tonights show promises to celebrate Bowies musical and fashion legacy in a riot of colour, camp and couture.
Saturday 6th January
Oh You Pretty Things – The Grand Social. 12am – 5pm. Free
A special Bowie themed edition of the weekly Ha’penny Flea Market which will showcase and sell fan’s specially designed Bowie pieces as well as some vinyl and fanzine stalls.
The Bowie Ball – The Sugar Club. 10pm – 3am. €12
This is where you dress to impress, plaster on the make up, shine up the space boots and let the hair down for a night of racous rock n roll and disco dancing as you celebrate the golden years with a live performance from that rum bunch of showmen, The Salty Dog Allstars and a special guest DJ set.
Great prizes for best dressed with glam and glitter make up available on the night.
Sunday 7th January
Space Oddity – The View From Major Tom’s Tin Can – Smithfield Sq. 11am – 4pm. €3
Sit back and enjoy 360 degree views of the galaxy as the Exploration Dome takes you on a journey through time and space using state-of-the-art full dome 360 degree 3-D digital projection technology, stunning graphics and advanced computer simulations all set to the music of David Bowie!
Bowie Brunch – The Woollen Mills. Midday – 3pm. €30
Wake up you sleepy head, put on some clothes, shake up your bed and get down to listen to Today FM’s Ed Smith as he takes to the decks to provide all you pretty things with the perfect soundtrack to a perfect brunch. If you have kids, bring them to this!
Labyrinth – Lighthouse Cinema. 2pm.
A Sunday afternoon showing for all the aspiring Bowie’s to enjoy!
Monday 8th January
Bowie Birthday Bash – The Grand Social . 8pm. €7
Tonight celebrates what would have been David’s 71st birthday with a return visit by one of last year’s highlights, The London Boys.
This six piece band perform the songs that made the man, from the mid 60s Mod leanings of Take My Tip through to the spaced out weirdness of Memory Of A Free Festival from 1969.
Wednesday 10th January
Designs for Bowie – Jonathan Barnbrook – Harry Clarke Lecture Hall, NCAD, Thomas St, D8. 6pm. €10
London based designer and Bowie album cover artwork collaborator Jonathan Barnbrook will be over for a talk and Q&A about working with Bowie on the process and realisations of the amazing Blackstar album cover and fonts as well as covers for The Next Day, Heathen and Reality.
Ongoing art exhibitions:
Art by David Bowie – Gallery X, 65 St. William Street D2 – Free
Representative of his artistic output from as early as 1978 up to 2002, the Bowie Art collection consists of 10 unique pieces, each hand signed by Bowie himself, starting with a limited edition 1 of 120 signed lithographic print, a self portrait titled “Heroes”. These lithographs were given to journalists to promote the release of the album Heroes in 1978.
Also included in the collection is another signed self portrait titled “Outside” which was used for the cover of the 1995 album of the same name. This collection shows a side of Bowie that many may not be aware of, the artist in every form of the word.
That’s just a teenchy tiny selection of what’s going on, so be sure to check out the full event schedule here.
Get ready to celebrate like Ziggy himself.