CELEBRATING CREATIVITY AND DIVERSITY AT THIS YEAR’S EASTSIDE ARTS FESTIVAL
From the 1st-11th August places and spaces across east Belfast will transform into hubs of creativity and diversity for the annual EastSide Arts Festival. Supported by Arts Council of Northern Ireland, this year’s exciting programme is filled with glorious new experiences, amazing and inspiring activities which are open for everyone to enjoy.
With so much to do across music, comedy, film, theatre, talks, workshops, exhibitions, literature, events for the young and old, community events and heritage tours over the 11 days, here’s 11 ideas to capture your imagination:
2. Visual Arts: Enjoy late night art events with ArtisAnn Gallery, The Vault and Creative Exchange or call into the fantastic new QSS Studios in the Wyse Byse building for their members’ exhibition.
3. Film: Classic films at Strand Arts Centre include the 60th anniversary screening of Some Like It Hot and Sunday brunch and screening of When Harry Met Sally.
4. Tower Street Faculty Takeover: For one day only join Seedhead Arts as they take over the old Tower Street Campus and go back to school, but not as you know it – this school curriculum includes beginners’ axe throwing, ballroom dancing and a cocktail masterclass.
5. Workshops: If you are into all things dance check out Project Dance’s weekend of dance featuring leading names from the dance industry, or if creative writing takes your fancy, discover the history of the area and join east Belfast author Heather Richardson for her workshop, ’Stories of the Streets.’
6. Talks & Tours: From Van Morrison to George Best, Yardmen to Gaelic Tours, Titanic Belfast to Belfast During the Blitz, Gourmet Greenway Foraging to discovering the stories of people from the past in Dundonald Cemetery, there are dozens of tours to choose from.
7. Children and Families: Travel to Narnia with Mr Tumnus and Translink, listen to three beardy men play music just for babies in ‘Baby Daddy’, meet books and bears at Connswater Shopping Centre, join in all things creative at the FunKademy or check out Drag Queen Story Time at Holywood Arches Library.
6. Special Events include a tea dance at Knocknagoney Community Centre, a literary knittery with Emily DeDakis and Yoga in the Park with East Belfast Yoga and Vault Artist Studios.
9. Theatre and Comedy: Enjoy A night in November, the award-winning play by east Belfast’s Marie Jones at Strand Arts Centre, a new play by Daniel Kelly about living with Dementia, A Thought for Your Pennies, back by popular demand the cult classic Murder She Got Wrote Off or take a sneak preview of a brand new play, Living the Dream, based on a true story featuring the ‘spirit’ of George Best and John Lennon.
10. Music and Words: Take you pick from an 80’s Prom with live band at The Vault, live music by The Ronnie Greer Almost Big Band with special guests Alice McCullough and Ken Haddock, Hex Hue at St. Martin’s Church, Boxcar Blues Brothers, Matt McGinn, poetry with Colin Dardis, storytelling with Tenx9 and ‘Reporting the Troubles’ with Deric Henderson and Ivan Little.
Roisin McDonough, Chief Executive of Arts Council of Northern Ireland said:
“It’s always a pleasure to welcome the annual EastSide Arts Festival with its packed programme of inspiring and entertaining arts and cultural events for everyone to enjoy. The Arts Council, as a principal funder, is delighted to be able to support the EastSide Arts in their continued success as they go about delivering their vision for the creative transformation of east Belfast.”
Director of the EastSide Arts Festival, Rachel Kennedy: