Culture Night Cork City 2020: ‘Ball Hopping’

Ballincollig Youthreach Students Create Original Track About Cork Slang to Support Culture Night Cork City 2020

 Youthreach students to present original Cork slang track at Culture Night Cork City 2020

A group of students from Ballincollig, Cork are to compose and present an original rap, featuring popular Cork slang, based on “life in Cork City and adjusting to their ‘new normal’ since the Covid-19 pandemic hit.”

The Cork slang rap is a part of an event called ‘Ball Hopping’ that is being virtually presented at the Culture Night Cork City 2020 on September 18, 2020. The event is a pre-recorded event that will be shown on Culture Night 2020.

Culture Night Cork City, launched at the end of the last month by Lord Mayor Cllr. Joe Kavanagh and the 2020 Culture Night Ambassador for Cork City, Cónal Creedon, is an annual public event held on the third Friday in September. It is “a night for the family to enjoy”. In light of the pandemic, this year’s events will encourage people to ‘connect through culture’ both online as well as in person. 

Though government restrictions are still in place regarding physical gatherings, it has been reported that Culture Night Cork City’s organisers have adapted to ensure that the people of Cork City are still “guaranteed an enjoyable evening of music, art, theatre, and more.”

The young music composers and singers of Ballincollig are a part of the Youthreach Education Programme that offers alternative education for 16-to-20-year-olds who are no longer engaged in mainstream education. 

“The last six months have been so tough on our young people that we really want to encourage them to share how they’re feeling. It’s wonderful to see them express themselves in such a passionate and creative way as in this rap. I’m certain that everyone who listens to and views this performance will enjoy it!”, said Breda Dennehy, resource person and communications teacher for the Ballincollig students. 


Ballincollig Youthreach students. image source: Culture Night Cork City

Garry McCarthy, a rapper, songwriter and producer, who will hold a series of workshops with the Youthreach students in the run-up to Culture night Cork City, recognises rap as ‘an important and accessible channel of expression for Irish youth,’ and delivers music workshops in and around Ireland. 

Commenting on the programme, he said, “The purpose of my workshops will be to explore Irish slang, and more specifically, Cork slang. We’ll investigate the origins of Cork slang and discover how much of the slang phrases we use are derived from Traveller’s cant. We’re going to produce a fun and lighthearted track about the way us Corkonians speak, and it will also be educational.”

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