The Casement Project danced with the queer body of British knight, Irish rebel and international humanitarian Roger Casement, to imagine a national body that welcomes the stranger from beyond the border, as well as the one already inside.

Responding to the centenary commemorations of the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland, and to its context in the First World War, choreographer Fearghus Ó Conchúir mobilised the neglected legacies of the past as a resource for the future. Championing the value of dance as form of knowledge that can help imagine and embody better possibilities of living, this choreography of bodies and ideas took place across multiple platforms and national boundaries.

The Casement Project for DRAFF from José Miguel Jiménez on Vimeo.

An award-winning creative team, a cast of internationally-acclaimed performers and contributors from beyond the arts joined Fearghus to create five interconnected ways for people to be involved in the project:

  • ​​Butterflies and Bones: The Casement Project, a choreography for stage presented in London, Dublin, Belfast and Kerry
  • Féile Fáilte, a day of dance on the beach that celebrated, through all kinds of dance, the welcoming national body that Casement might have dreamt of when he came ashore at Banna in 1916
  • I’m Roger Casement, a short dance-film with Emmy-award winning director, Dearbhla Walsh, for broadcast and online streaming
  • Two cross-disciplinary academic symposia, Bodies Politic in Maynooth and Hospitable Bodies: The Casement Symposium in London, both reflecting on Casement’s legacy and on the work of the contemporary artist as citizen
  • A series of opportunities for a diversity of people to be part of the creation process of The Casement Project and to explore their own creative response to the topic.



Fearghus Ó Conchúir is a choreographer and dance artist whose film and live performances create a space for audiences and artists to build communities together.  He gathers perspectives gleaned from personal and collective experiences, frequently collaborating with artists from other disciplines. Expressed in movement, these encounters with our sense of place, identity and history create layers of meaning that are affecting, thought-provoking and deeply resonant with audiences.

A major creative preoccupation has been the relationship between bodies and buildings in the context of urban regeneration, a preoccupation that has manifested itself in film and in live performance in Europe, the US and China.

He was brought up in the Ring Gaeltacht in Ireland and completed degrees in English and European Literature at Magdalen College Oxford, before training at London Contemporary Dance School.

He was Curator of the Artistic Programme at Firkin Crane, Cork from 2013-2015. He is currently a Trustee of the BBC Performing Arts Fund and is a former board member of Dance Ireland, Dance Digital, Project Arts Centre and Create. Fearghus was the first Ireland Fellow on the Clore Leadership Programme and continues to contribute to the programme as a facilitator, coach and speaker. He is a Project Artist, a member of Project Arts Centre’s associate artist scheme and a PhD student at NUIM with the support of an IRC Scholarship.


Mikel Arístegui

Born in 1968 in San Sebastian, Spain, Mikel studied dance at the Folkwang Hochschule, Essen (1994). Since then, he has worked as a freelance choreographer, dancer, teacher and producer in Italy, France, Spain, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Poland, Brasil, Argentina and Chile. He worked as a dancer for Sasha Waltz (2001/05), Dv8 Physical Theater (2005/07) and other choreographers. He is currently co-curating an exhibition called Contesting/ Contexting Sport in Berlin, Germany. mikelaristegui.com


Theo Clinkard

Theo is a Brighton based choreographer, performer and theatre designer. Following 20 years performing with many of the UK’s most celebrated choreographers, he formed his own 7-strong dance company in 2012. He has created Ordinary Courage, Chalk and Of Land & Tongue for the group and is currently planning This Bright Field, to premiere in 2017. Recent commissions include somewhat still when seen from above for Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch and The Listening Room for Danza Contemporanea de Cuba. theoclinkard.com

Philip Connaughton

Philip is a choreographer/performer originally from Dublin. He began dancing locally and then went on to train at the Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance in London. He was Dance Artist in Residence at axis:Ballymun in 2012 and the Associate Artist of Dance Ireland in 2013. He was worked extensively in dance, theatre, and opera. Performing his own work both nationally and internationally. He is currently a recipient of a 16 x 16: Next Generation Bursary Award. philipconnaughton.com

Alma Kelliher

Composer, sound designer and musician. Credits include: riverrun (Emergency Room, worldwide tour) Winner Best Sound Design, Irish Times Theatre Awards 2013; The Elephantom (UK National Theatre and West End); Cure (Fearghus Ó Conchúir. Alma has a BA in Music (TCD), an MSc in Sound Design (Edinburgh University) and is a graduate of the Rough Magic SEEDS Programme 2010–11. She is a member of The Evertides – a trio influenced by folk, gospel and vocal harmony.

Matthew Morris

Matthew is a freelance dance artist who travels internationally collaborating with companies and on independent projects with diverse choreographers and directors that include stage, film, performance art, puppetry, education and site-specific events. When he is not engaged with this practice he turns a trade in curiously vast and quixotic projects.

Liv O'Donoghue

Liv is a performer based in Dublin. She trained at the Northern School of Contemporary Dance, graduating with the Outstanding Achievement Award in 2007. Since then, she has performed widely across Europe and the USA, appearing in work by Dead Centre, Liz Roche Company, Emma Martin Dance, junk ensemble and Irish Modern Dance Theatre/Kyle Abraham, among others. Liv is a co-founder of DRAFF magazine, which follows the process of creation in dance & theatre. livodonoghue.com

Ciarán O’Melia

Freelance designer, theatre maker and sometime performer based in Dublin. He was a finalist exhibitor and runner-up in the Performance Design category at World Stage Design 2013. Previous work with Fearghus Ó Conchúir includes Cure, and The Rhythm of Fierce for Croí Glan. Other recent designs include Oedipus, Twelfth Night (Abbey Theatre), Romeo and Juliet, nominated Best Set Design Irish Times Theatre Awards 2015, The Threepenny Opera (Gate Theatre), Susanna’s Secret, The Human Voice (Opera Theatre Company).

Dearbhla Walsh

Dearbhla is an Emmy, IFTA and BAFTA award-winning director. Work includes Little Dorrit (Best Director Emmy) and The Silence (BBC), Shameless (Channel 4), Penny Dreadful, The Tudors (Showtime), and Borgia (Canal Plus/ Netflix). She directed Dustin Hoffman and Dame Judi Dench in Roald Dahl’s EsioTrott (BBC1/TWC), and is directing The Collection for France TV, Amazon and BBCworldwide. She is developing Donal Ryan’s Spinning Heart for TV, is attached to feature film Napoleon & Betsey and directed Hozier’s Cherry Wine promo starring Saoirse Ronan.

Project team

Executive Producer Cian O’Brien

Project Manager Lian Bell

Production Manager Marcus Costello

Communications Annette Nugent, Kate O’Sullivan

Funders and partners

The Casement Project was produced by Fearghus Ó Conchúir in association with Project Arts Centre. It was an Open Call National Project in ART:2016, the Arts Council’s programme as part of the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme. It was co-commissioned by 14-18 NOW, WW1 Centenary Art Commissions, supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England and the Heritage Lottery Fund, and by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Its London presentation was supported by Culture Ireland as part of Ireland 2016. Its creation was also made possible through the generosity of Dr. R. Martin Chávez and supported by Dance Ireland; Maynooth University; The Place (London); The British Library (London); The UK National Archives (London) and Micro-Rainbow International.

What we are interested in

Arts Council of Ireland ART: 2016

Ireland 2016 Official Centenary Programme

14-18Now: World War 1 Centenary Art Commissions

Project Arts Centre