Work creeps into my weekend all the time

September will be a busy month for Noelle Ni Riagain - who performs at Electric Picnic, Pitch'd Circus Festival and on Culture Night.
Work creeps into my weekend all the time

Noelle Ni Riagain who is taking part in

Noelle Ni Riagain is trained in Physical Theatre and Theatrical Clown. She directs and performs across many different art forms and will be involved in numerous events during the Pitch'd Circus Festival which takes place in various venues and outdoor spaces across the city from September 9 to September 25. For details, see

What is your ideal way to spend a Friday night?

My ideal Friday night, my ideal any night would be spent performing. Followed by a good dance. I love both. 

If none of this can be found, catching a show (any artistic discipline), I love the Arts. And of course all of the above is even better when shared with my friends, family, and my love, Cormac Mohally.

Lie ins or up with the lark.. which is it for you?

Definitely “Lie Ins’. I’ll stay up all night, right until the Lark is getting up, but I love a good lie in and to wake up slowly. I take a good crawl, before taking a run at the day.

Noelle will be performing with members of  Loosysmokes (pictured above) as part of Electric Picnic. Picture: Mark Stedman
Noelle will be performing with members of  Loosysmokes (pictured above) as part of Electric Picnic. Picture: Mark Stedman

Does work creep into your weekend at all?

All the time. This weekend I’ll be performing with Loosysmokes, Circus Factory’s associate artists at the Electric Picnic, and for the three weekends after I’ll be performing, attending creative workshops and going to see shows at Pitch’d Circus and Street Arts Festival “On me home Turf Cork”.

If money was no object, where would you head to on a weekend city break? And who would you bring with you?

I would head to Berlin or Amsterdam. I truly miss good night clubbing. Dancing in the wee hours to techno music. I recently had the pleasure of catching Lauren Garnier at the Centre Point Night in the Button Factory in Dublin. I was in my element. Who would I bring along? My fiancé, Cormac.

Closer to home, is there some place you like to head to recharge the batteries?

Sliding into a cold body of water is my saviour. The sea, river, lake, I am not fussy and any time of the year too. It just cools me right down and calms my nervous system. This has been a lifetime practice for me, no matter where in the world I am. It is my best treat to myself, ever.

Do you like to catch up with family/friends at the weekend?

Family and friends are really important to me. In fact one of the things I am excited about at Pitch’d Circus and Street Arts Festival, is that loads of my friends will be in Cork for the festival. I have friends coming in from abroad and from all around the country to perform at the festival. As well as family and friends coming to see the shows. 

There’s nothing like sharing the experience of watching a show with people you love. 

The festival has shows for all ages so I’ll be hanging with all the smallies in my life too. It is great watching shows with kids, they hold back nothing about how they feel, even if it means they are completely interrupting the performance, haha.

Do you get to indulge any hobbies? Even as a spectator?

No, I have never had hobbies or if they were, they quickly became part of my working life. The thing I love doing the most is chatting to people. I guess that could be called a hobby. I just love being in conversation with pretty much anyone. I find how people navigate their lives and move through the world fascinating.

Entertain or be entertained? If it’s the latter do you have a signature dish?

I definitely have been entertained far more often than I have entertained. 

I am very much the person who will turn up early and help with the prep and the clean up after. 

That being said, if I am to entertain, I do not have a signature dish, I have a total dislike for food waste so I look at what could go foul if it is not eaten and look up recipes online to inspire me.

We have so many places to eat out in Cork — where are your go to spots for coffee/ lunch/ special meal?

The Marina Market is just across the road from The Circus Factory, so that is defo one of my hot spots. For a special meal, as you said there are so many fantastic places to eat out in Cork it really depends on my mood. For brunch though I have to put O’Mahony’s of Watergrasshill right up there as my number one. Their food is second to none and the atmosphere is fantastic, they even did a Disco Brunch last weekend, class.

Sunday night comes around too fast.. how do you normally spend it?

More often than not my Sunday nights consist of cuddling up on the couch with my man and having a bitteen of a telly binge.

What time does your alarm clock go off on Monday morning?

Monday morning is the same as most days. My alarm goes of at 8am and I am starting into jobs needed doing by 10am.

Anything else you are up to right now.......

I am part of a project called ‘Women in Ceremony’ with Linda Cullen. We have just created a Walkabout show called ‘Cart go leor’ and will be have our first outting at Cork’s very own Circus and Street Arts Festival. We will be down at the Coal Quay on September 23 for Culture Night and on September 25 we will be on Douglas St, where there are lorry loads of street performers doing shows for the whole afternoon. All part of Pitch’d festival. So see ya all there.

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