the trailblazery
We need a population that is willing to rock the boat, stand up, be non-compliant with the status quo. So we are taking the opportunity to showcase what is possible when individuals stop asking for permission and step into making their own dreams and ambitions a reality
— The Trailbalzery

Trailblazing the Nation


The Trailblazery came to life at The Office of Non Compliance, which was part of Dublin Contemporary, a large-scale art exhibition held in Dublin, 2011. Our vision was to explore the art of being alive on the threshold of an ever-changing world. We wanted to evolve cultural narratives individually, locally and globally. We were inspired to investigate our shared human experience and life at the edge of a new frontier. We invited people to explore their inner inquiry and outer contribution to the world. We also asked them to reveal some of their epiphanies and aha moments in front of a live audience.

That inaugural event became a nationwide series designed to showcase and promote creative and socially engaged ideas from people who blazed bright trails. We built a bottom up community and provided a platform for people to participate in new conversations about people, place and possibility. We took over abandoned buildings, festival fields, sacred spaces, theatres, university campuses and one of the oldest Freemasons’ Halls in the world. We embarked on a road trip around the island of Ireland and gathered a lot of trailblazing momentum along the way.


Office of Non-Compliance | Dublin Contemporary 2011

Secret Acts of Non-Compliance

Mari Kennedy (Coach/Facilitator) Davie Philip (Cultivate), Joan Mulvihill (Tech Entrepreneur and thought leader) Kate Nolan (Re-Dress) Peter OBrien (Happenings), Shiela Gallagher (Green Sod), Michael McDermott (Publisher), Una Mullally (Journalist and broadcaster), Grace Dyas (THEATREclub), Suzie Cahn (Permaculturalist), Joanna Crooke (St.Agnes Music project), Ruairi McKiernan (Social activist), Noeline Kavanagh (Macnas)


Smock Alley | Dublin 2011

Secret Acts of Non-Compliance

Amanda Coogan (Performance Artist), Aaron Copeland (Social Entrepreneur), Caoimhin O’Raghallaigh (Musician) Cathy OConnor (Fashion Stylist), David Hayes (Cultural Creative) Michelle Darmody (Food Entrepreneur) Michael Ryan (Yoga Teacher), Philly McMahon (Creative Producer) with live performance from Donal Dineen, Laura Sheehan, Kate Ellis, Linda Buckley, Sean Mac Erlaine and Donal Lunny, Caoimhin O’ Raghallaigh


Unitarian Church | Dublin 2012

Secret Acts of Non-Compliance

Aoibheann McNamara (Ard Bia), Brenda Byrne (Yoga Teacher), Dara Hogan (Social Entrepreneur), Eli Cahn (Educational Thinker), George Boyle (Fumbally Exchange), Marie Mulholland (Activist), Natasha Czopor (Living Food), Samuel Bishop (Community Activist), Sean Love (Social Entrepreneur), Tony Griffin (Soar)


Wonderlust Stage | Body & Soul Festival 2012 & 2013

Things that make you go hmmmm

Between the Click of the Light and the Start of a Dream

Passionately Curious

Grace Dyas (THEATREClub), Mari Kennedy (Coach + Facilitator), Michael McDermott (Publisher), Una Mullally (Journalist & Broadcaster), Rosie O’ Reilly (Re-dress), Sarah Murphy (Mover& Shaker), Dolores Whelan (Spiritual Guide), Davie Philip (Cultivate), Sheila Gallagher (Green Sod,) Ruth Meehan (Filmmaker), Darragh Doyle (Social media guru), Joan Mulvihill (Tech entrepreneur and thought leader), Sheena Matheikan (The Uniform Project), Marie Mulholland (Activist), Sharon Greene (Queens of Neon), Caroline Casey (Global Equality Activist), Fergal McCarthy (Artist, Liffey Town and No Mans Land),  Cathy Pearson (Film Maker), Stephen Flynn (The Happy Pear), Fiona Hallinan (Artist, Heterodyne Project), Diarmuid Lyng (GAA Hurler and Sports Presenter) with performance from Susie Q and Colm Keegan


Cork Midsummer Festival | Triskel Christchurch 2012

Trailblaze Sunday Service: Everyday Epiphanies and Altered States.

Steve Collins (Ashoka Fellow and medical maverick), Dylan Tighe (Artist/ Musician RECORD) Carmel Winters (Filmmaker) Niamh Gunn (Restorative Justice Activist), Stevie G (Music aficionado & RedFM) and Brother Richard Hendrick (UCC Chaplin, Dublin Gospel Choir), Sheena Matheiken (experimental designer), Robbie Hamilton (educator) with music and performance  provided by Katie Kim and Niwel Tsumbu.


Aula Maxima NUIG | Galway Arts Festival  2012

In our response lies our growth and our freedom

Sunny Jacobs (Writer and peacemaker) Manchán Magan (Global nomad), John ODonoghue (broadcaster and activist), Dylan Haskins (DIY Activist and broadcaster), Colm OGorman (Amnesty Ireland) Oonagh Kearney (Film maker & writer), David Cunningham (The Yoga Shala ) with music and performance from by Kate Ellis, Linda Buckley, Laura Sheeran and Daithí O Drónaí


Freemasons Hall | Grand Lodge of Ireland 2012

Can You Keep a Secret? #trailblazetopsecret

Speakers include: Una Mullally (Journalist & Broadcaster) Róise Goan (Artistic Director Dublin Fringe Festival), Michael Harding (Writer and Actor) Bill Sheeran (Astrologer) Judymay Murphy (Success Coach) Karen Ward (Shaman & HolisticTherapist), Neil Watkins (Writer & Performer) Abie Philbin Bowman (Comedian & Journalist) Paul Hayes (TechPRneur) W. Brother Morgan McCreadie (Freemasons Ireland) with music from Nanu Nanu and Chequerboard


Ennis | Festival of Light 2013

Living on the Edge

We invited participants to share their own living experience, their intrinsic connection to Co. Clare and the place that this celebrated region might occupy in a bigger global conversation.

Mick O’ Dea (Artist), Ciana Campbell (The Ennis Bookclub Festival), Patrick McCormack (Story Teller & Rural Philosopher), Birgitta Curtin (Burren Smokehouse), Manchán Magan (Writer Documentary – Maker), Orla Vaughan (Kilfenora Hostel), Archie Simpson (Vocal Coach, Choir Director), Orla McGuinness (Biodynamic Psychotherapist) with music and performance from Luka Bloom (Singer/ Songwriter) and the Lismorahaun Singers