Grainne Gillis
An opera singer and voiceover artist based in London, with a keen interest in art and politics, and how they affect the world we live in.

Interested in the art of politics, and the politics of art

Entries by Grainne Gillis

Why Labour's Best Strategy Is "There's No 'I' in 'Team'"

(1) Comments | Posted 14 December 2014 | (21:14)

Last week, I listened to a phone call from Mike in New Cross to the James O'Brien show on LBC. It would take someone with a heart of stone to not be moved by Mike's plight. There are many stories like this in the news, but what cannot be replicated...

Read Post

Opportunity Knocks - But Who Will Answer?

(0) Comments | Posted 14 May 2014 | (19:05)

A few years back, I was on tour in Germany. By sheer chance, someone I'd gone to college with was sitting in the audience in Munich. It was a big thrill to see so familiar a face so far from home and as it turned out, Colin had moved with...

Read Post

Cameron the 'Christian'

(0) Comments | Posted 20 April 2014 | (22:43)

This weekend, theoretically is the holiest in the Christian calendar. I say "theoretically" for a number of reasons. Firstly, Easter isn't a "Christian" holiday per se; there is much argument about this, but according to a friend of mine, it is derived from "Hausos" which was an Indo-European (precursor of...

Read Post

Beyond the Tube Strike

(0) Comments | Posted 5 February 2014 | (22:17)

The headline on this evening's Evening Standard was interesting, as its interpretation depended solely on one's political persuasion: "Millions caught up in rush-hour chaos as Tube strike cripples the London Underground". For my part, as someone who might be described as being on the left (though not far-left: to my...

Read Post

The Milk of Human Kindness

(0) Comments | Posted 19 January 2014 | (21:23)

Today I attended a memorial lunch for my friend Jaime. He died in October of Motor Neurone Disease at the age of 53. To say it has been a day of mixed emotions has been the understatement of the year (thus far); but having gone from dragging my heels in...

Read Post

On the Passing of Giants

(0) Comments | Posted 31 August 2013 | (22:47)

There's been a meme doing the rounds of social media this week. Under the aegis of "Make music not war" it states: "When Winston Churchill was asked to cut arts funding in favour of the war effort, he simply replied "Then what are we fighting for?"". For any human being,...

Read Post

Is Masculinity in Crisis?

(64) Comments | Posted 21 May 2013 | (01:00)

In 2009, I was teaching in a sixth-form college. One of my students came to me one day and said "Miss, I'm a feminist". I caught myself wondering: Does she know what it means?

Sometimes, I am not sure what it means to be a feminist. I know what it...

Read Post

The Misunderstood Crime Part 2

(1) Comments | Posted 19 May 2013 | (12:28)

In a crime blog in the Guardian last year, rape and sexual assault didn't even merit a category of its own, whereas bicycle theft did. The statistics clearly show that women do not feel confident enough to report when they have been raped, because it is not treated as a...

Read Post

The Misunderstood Crime Part 1

(0) Comments | Posted 19 May 2013 | (12:19)

When I was 19 I lived in a house in north Dublin. I'd dropped out of college, but was still living the student life with a friend and our housemates. Our landlord, who wasn't much older than us, but whose sister we knew (who was a housemate) also lived with...

Read Post

Do We Always Get the Politicians We Deserve?

(3) Comments | Posted 1 April 2013 | (02:06)

On Monday, I was coming back from a coaching in East London. As I made the interchange to the Jubilee line I did a little mental double-take, when, lo and behold, in front of me was none other than the embodiment of Old Etonian, Bullingdon Club, posh boy Barnum and...

Read Post


(0) Comments | Posted 29 March 2013 | (21:34)

London, for any performer, is a goldmine, being as it is full of crazy people. Yesterday, as I was coming home on the train from Victoria a lady sat opposite me. Statuesque, black, a strikingly handsome face wearing what can only be described as a black sheep of a coat,...

Read Post

Suffer the Little Children.....

(0) Comments | Posted 16 December 2012 | (11:59)

On Friday morning, I received a phone call from my mother to tell me that my niece (who is also my goddaughter) had been taken to Dublin to the national children's hospital in Crumlin for an operation, as her pacemaker was infected. To explain: my niece was born with a...

Read Post

Let Us Forget...

(24) Comments | Posted 11 November 2012 | (12:54)

There are not many things I dislike about living in London. Of course, the weather could be better sometimes; transport could definitely be improved upon; and an increase in the living wage would help most ordinary Londoners. But the one day of the year I have come to absolutely loathe...

Read Post

Is it Cos I is Irish?

(31) Comments | Posted 25 September 2012 | (01:00)

About seven weeks ago, I had to renew my Irish passport. I had never actually done this outside Ireland; but one of the prerequisites of getting a passport was getting signatures and a confirmation of identity from someone who worked in what Irish people deemed to be "respectable" professions many...

Read Post

What IS Disability?

(0) Comments | Posted 9 September 2012 | (13:20)

A few years back, a friend of mine who lives in Paris explained to me that via the French medical system, women there can opt to abort the foetus if signs of disability are found. I listened to my friend's rational explanation behind that thinking: sometimes parents don't have the...

Read Post