Arts Council of Northern Ireland

The Funding and Development Agency
for The Arts in Northern Ireland

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What’s on in the Arts online

Wednesday 4th August 2021 at 12pm 0 Comments

As more and more artists and arts organisations from Northern Ireland go digital to connect with audiences at home, the Arts Council has rounded up just some of these fantastic cultural things to do online, much of it supported by the Department for Communities and National Lottery funding.

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FESTIVALS

Paradosso Theatre: celebrates the 100th anniversary of Brian Moore’s birth year through Lonely Passions: The Brian Moore Centenary Festival which takes place from Thursday 19th – Wednesday 25th August 2021, ending on the centenary of his birth. Born in Belfast on 25 August 1921, Brian Moore was one of the most prolific authors to come out of Belfast. A prizewinning and three times Booker Prize nominee, he wrote over 20 novels, including The Emperor Of Ice Cream, The Luck Of Ginger Coffey, The Feast Of Lupercal, I Am Mary Dunne, The Doctor’s Wife, and The Colour Of Blood amongst others.

Paradosso Theatre has planned a week-long series of events and are hoping people will learn something new about this greatly under-appreciated writer. From walking tours, documentaries, panel discussions and readings in unusual places, there’s something to suit everyone. For the full programme and to purchase tickets visit https://paradossotheatre.com/

Belfast International Arts Festival: the 59th annual Belfast International Arts Festival (BIAF) returns from 6th October to 7th November with an extensive programme that gives audiences opportunities to both experience live performances again whilst also enjoying a selection of online events at home.

Glen Hansard and The Great Irish Songbook is set to headline Belfast International Arts Festival. On Friday 22 October, exactly two years since Hansard’s sold out performances at BIAF in 2019, the lead singer of Irish rock band The Frames and one half of folk-rock duo The Swell Season, is looking forward to his first gig in front of a live audience on the island of Ireland since the pandemic.

The Great Irish Songbook, featuring legendary Irish folk group Dervish and a stunning line-up of special guests is set to take to the Grand Opera House stage on Thursday 21 October. Artists performing some of their favourite Irish songs alongside an eight-piece Dervish include Belfast’s own Brian Kennedy, the multi-award-winning Cara Dillon, Gaelic folk singer Karen Matheson, the revered Eddi Reader and Belfast’s own Open Arts Community Choir. For more information and to book tickets, visit https://belfastinternationalartsfestival.com/

Northern Ireland Opera’s The Glenarm Festival of Voice: the annual celebration of voice and song, is now in its eleventh year. Last year Northern Ireland Opera temporarily relocated to Belfast from the Festival's home in Glenarm on the beautiful north coast of Antrim and this year due to ongoing Covid-19 restrictions, they will once again be holding the Festival in Belfast. They are however, delighted that they will be able to have a socially-distanced audience for both the Competition Finale in First Church Belfast and for their event in the Orpheus Ballroom, 'A Pint With Puccini'. Tickets will be £10 for each event and must be booked in advance: visit https://www.niopera.com/ for booking links. Unfortunately this year they will not be able to have audiences at the BBC Radio 3 recitals, but these will be recorded in First Church Belfast and broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in the early Autumn.

All events are subject to change in the event of further COVID 19 restrictions.

Events

• Friday 27th August, 8pm: BBC Radio 3 Recital, Ben McAteer (baritone) and pianist Simon Lepper

Sunday 29th August, 3pm: Puccini and a Pint at The Orpheus Ballroom, Hill St (above the Harp Bar)

Saturday 28th August, 8pm: BBC Radio 3 Recital, Kathryn Rudge (mezzo-soprano) and pianist Simon Lepper

Sunday 29th August, 1pm: BBC Radio 3 Recital, Elizabeth Watts (soprano) and pianist Simon Lepper

Sunday 29th August, 7pm: The Glenarm Festival of Voice Competition Finale, First Church Belfast (Rosemary St)

Féile an Phobail: Ireland’s biggest community arts festival returns for its 33rd year from 5-15 August 2021. For full programme details visit www.feilebelfast.com

Future Screens NI Future Tuesdays: in association with Féile an Phobail Presents “The Live and The Digital: Creativity After Covid-19” Tuesday 10th August 12 noon. Future Screens NI is delighted to host a Future Tuesdays panel discussion chaired by Director Professor Paul Moore examining the potential and examples of creative innovation across Belfast. "The Live and the Digital: Creativity After Covid-19" will be streamed live from Áras Uí Chonghaile on the Falls Road as part of Féile an Phobail. The panel consider the question of creativity after Covid-19.

The panel will feature the following speakers and their innovative content:

“Tsuru” by Deepa Mann-Kler

https://www.discoverneon.com/tsuru

Titanic by Michael McGlade of Yellow Design

https://www.yellowdesign.tv/ar-vr/tourism/

Experiments in Immersive Theatre by Zoe Seaton of Big Telly

https://big-telly.com

The Future of Virtual Production by Dr Declan Keeney of Ulster University

https://www.ulster.ac.uk/staff/d-keeney

Don't miss this unique experience which will consider the future of creativity and the city of Belfast.

Register for tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/160744809051

EastSide Arts Festival: EastSide Arts Festival 2021 will take place 5th–15th August and everyone’s invited! Featuring 100+ artists across more than 80 events taking place both in-person and online, you can choose to enjoy the festival from the comfort of your own home, outdoors in person, or at a small number of east Belfast locations as part of a socially distanced audience.

The theme this year is ‘connection’ and the festival is very much looking forward to connecting with their audiences at a number of in-person and online events in August (in line with government guidance). Tickets are now on sale at www.eastsidearts.net

Here’s a snapshot of some of the events you can enjoy this year:

  • Anthony Toner new album launch
  • Mixed Bill Comedy Night: Presenting comedy talent from across Northern Ireland for an evening of laughs at Vault Artist Studios.
  • Greenway Celebrations: Get down to Victoria Park, part of the Connswater Community Greenway, for a host of things to do including sports activities, outdoor adventure, arts and crafts, street performances, food stalls, music, environmental activities and much much more... #GreenwayCelebrations.
  • West Ocean String Quartet: Join them, live, for this very special event in the incredible surroundings of St. Patrick’s church to launch the new album, Atlantic Edge
  • Billy Boy:  Written by Rosemary Jenkinson, directed by Matt Farris, commissioned and produced by EastSide Arts.
  • Mary Coughlan Sings Billy Holiday: Four in-person events will take place at the beautiful Stormont Hotel, the highlight of which is one of Ireland’s greatest jazz singers, Mary Coughlan, who will celebrate the life and music of Billie Holiday, in the style and period of her time.
  • Literary events: A host of well-known names from NI and beyond will feature across a wide range of online literature and spoken word events streamed from Accidental Theatre. Jan Carson, Colin Hassard, Abby Oliviera, Andrea Montgomery, Susan McKay, Andrew Cunning, Sarah Moss and Louise Nealon feature – to name but a few.
  • Live at CS Lewis Square: For the final weekend of the festival there will be 4 nights of live outdoor music at CS Lewis Square
  • Dragtastic Wrap Party: Lady Portia D’Monte and friends will close the 2021 EastSide Arts Festival with glitz, glam and excitement in-person at Vault Artist Studios.

Open House Festival: Open House Festival has announced its initial line-up for the 2021 August festival in Bangor, with three weeks of music from 12-29 August, comedy, spoken word and classic cinema in the beautiful surroundings of Bangor Castle Walled Garden.

While it will look a lot different to the trademark 140+ events in 40-odd venues festival that audiences have come to associate with Bangor in August, the Open House team are delighted to be back delivering live events once again. All events will be open air, fully seated and Covid-compliant, and there’ll be no need to worry about the weather as audiences will be protected under a stretch canvas cover.

Headline acts include internationally acclaimed Irish musician, Mary Coughlan, comedian, former doctor and author of the bestselling memoir This is Going to Hurt, Adam Kay, and bestselling Irish author, Marian Keyes. However, the bulk of performers and artists come from Northern Ireland, with comedians Shane Todd and Paddy Raff, and musicians Duke Special and Dana Masters featured in the programme. For the full programme visit www.openhousefestival.com

Arts Ekta’s Belfast Mela: Belfast’s most-loved family festival returns this year, from 23-29 August, with an amazing week-long programme of world music, dance, food and art across Belfast finishing with a magical Mini Mela across the city centre. A full programme will be revealed soon at www.belfastmela.org.uk

Portico of Ards Comedy Festival: with funding from Ards and North Down Borough Council, the Portico Comedy Arts Festival takes place across two weekends, 17-25 September 2021, with all events happening in the stunning grade A-listed architecture of the Portico of Ards in Portaferry. Highlights include:

  • The Pirates of Penzance on Friday 17 Sept
  • Sat 18 Sept brings NI comedy sensation Paddy Raff accompanied by BT9’s most famous export, his alter-ego Nigel
  • A family show from The Scott Brothers Duo on Sun 19 Sept provides the perfect introduction to classical music for all ages
  • On Thurs 23 Sept, ‘Our Jimmy’ is back by popular demand. David Hull Promotions presents comedian William Caulfield's latest show featuring the beloved Ulster characters first created by the late James Young
  • Neil Delamere, star of BBC’s The Blame Game, Fighting Talk and the Newsquiz, hits the road again with his riotous new stand-up show, Liminal, on Fri 24 Sept.
  • The festival concludes on Sat 25 Sept with The Iconettes and their band The Hitzvilles. Featuring hit songs that pays tribute to the best ‘girl groups’ and ‘divas’ of the 60s and 70s

For tickets visit www.porticoards.com

Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival: Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival unveils the first acts for their September festival. This year’s Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival has moved from its traditional slot in May to 2nd-12th September and has unveiled a hosts of new artists set to perform across a range of venues.

A full programme of Music, Theatre, Comedy, Theatre, Literature and Film will be announced in the coming weeks and stringent safety measures will be in place for what organisers hope will be one of the first major celebrations of the arts after sustained periods of lockdown. Visit < a href="https://www.cqaf.com">www.cqaf.com

VISUAL ARTS 

Please note visual art galleries are now permitted to open to the public, please check individual websites for opening times and booking information.

Catalyst Arts: presents 'Concealed in the half-light', 5 August - 2 September. This presentation disrupts the idea of the archive as a collection of ‘inanimate fossils’, which even in its entirety is only an illusion of history and presents just traces of reality. By looking at the Catalyst Arts archive and its unruly nature, there is potential to challenge the politics and power dynamics of the traditional archive which rigidly depends on data organisation such as standardisation and categorisation. These are systems put in place to streamline the varied and eradicate difference, which ultimately erases the value of difference. So when there are multiple histories and no agreed narratives, there is a possibility to offer archive alternatives, by acknowledging the subjective, intimate and personal, essentially the ‘unarchivable’.

This is an exhibition of many voices with invited artists Alice Rekab, artist-in-residence Nollaig Molloy, Matthew Wilson, the Department of Ultimology, the Digital Archive of Artists’ Publishing (DAAP) with Frances Whorrall-Campbell, Banner Repeater and the Artist-Led Archive. Further details can be found at https://www.catalystarts.org.uk/

University of Atypical: presents the exhibition, strangely disjointed & idiosyncratic by Dara Condon, 22 July - 19 August 2021

The University of Atypical is delighted to invite you to the long-awaited exhibition strangely disjointed & idiosyncratic by artist Dara Condon. Dara Condon was the recipient of the University of Atypical’s Graduate Award 2019 and we’re pleased to see this promising graduate’s exhibition realised. Dara’s inspiration derives from eclectic pools of thought drawing on scientific theories, sacred symbols and forms, mythology and the power of the natural world.

This is Dara’s first solo exhibition and he has created an environment that explores how the mind processes visual information on a conscious and subconscious level. This new body of work forms a constellation of art forms drawing from the artists life and his experience of the mind, memory and mental health. Visit www.universityofatypical.org

R-Space: presents ‘PINNED - on Linen’, from 7 August - 3 September 2021 at R-Space Gallery (32 Castle Street, Lisburn) and online via R-Space social media channelshttps://www.rspacelisburn.com/

Preview: Saturday 7 August 2021 at 2pm - all welcome!

PINNED - on Linen is a selected Jewellery Exhibition by Association For Contemporary Jewellery NI members, and invited guest makers closely associated with the group. The Exhibition ‘Pinned’ was first shown in Craft NI, November 2020 during Lockdown no.2. For this second showing, we are also premiering some new work.

This exhibition pays tribute to the fabric associated with R-Space at the Linen Rooms by installing work on repurposed and locally sourced Linen. By adapting the exhibition sympathetically and referencing the significance of the new location and its industrial heritage, ACJSNI engages audiences with new ways to experience the approaches and languages of Contemporary Jewellery, both in material and form.

R-Space Gallery is open to the public and Covid-19 restrictions apply. An online preview will also be available on their website and social media channels.

VAI Summer Gallery Guide

To mark the much-anticipated reopening of galleries, museums and art centres, Visual Artists Ireland has compiled a Summer Gallery Guide to inform audiences about forthcoming exhibitions happening in July and August across Ireland and Northern Ireland.

These exhibition details have been collated based on organisational websites and correspondence. All information was correct at the time of writing; however, dates may be subject to change. Visitors are advised to contact individual galleries before attending. https://visualartists.ie/vai-summer-gallery-guide-2021/

Craft NI: presents, Re-New: August Craft Month Exhibition 2021, from 2 August until 3 September. Craft NI’s annual August Craft Month Exhibition at Craft NI celebrates and promotes the work of Northern Ireland’s makers. We are particularly grateful to the former Guild of Northern Ireland Designer Makers (The Guild) who have given us a legacy gift for the development and promotion of the craft sector in Northern Ireland, providing five prizes for the exhibition. Makers have been invited to reflect on the theme ‘Re-new’. Visit www.craftni.org

Belfast Exposed: presents,

Gallery 1: Jerwood/Photoworks Awards 2020 - Silvia Rosi & Theo Simpson, 5 August – 25 September 2021

Belfast Exposed presents Jerwood/Photoworks Awards 2020 which showcases new photographic works by two early-career artists, Silvia Rosi and Theo Simpson. Both awardee artists explore the idea of history through their photographic practices, across themes of family, industry, identity and architecture.

Gallery 2: A Conversation Ensued, Nobody Said A Word - Colin Darke & Yvonne Kennan, 5-28 August 2021

The exhibition explores two individual interpreters with pre-existing concerns, interests and concepts considering and replying to the others. The interaction develops, grows, common ground is found, differences are highlighted, fleshed out and analysed, acknowledged, and the conversation continues.

Street View: Noel Bowler, 5 August – 25 September 2021

Above The Fold is the culmination of an ambitious long-term project (2012-2020) from Irish artist Noel Bowler. Using his signature medium format film camera to photograph newspaper newsrooms across Europe, the United States and Asia, his unique project shows us the physical space and the structural layers that have formed the foundation of our modern press.

For further details visit www.belfastexposed.org

Roe Valley Arts and Cultural Centre: presents a new exhibition called ‘Under the Same Sun’ which is showing until Saturday 21st August. As part of its commitment to support emerging local artists in challenging times, the works of six recent graduates who were unable to exhibit their ‘final show’ due to COVID-19 restrictions in 2020 will present their works here instead.

‘Under The Same Sun’ draws upon the commonality which holds us as a people and place together, speaking to shared joy and collective burden. Although varied in their individual concerns, the six exhibiting artists are all recent graduates of the Belfast School of Art. The contributing artists are:

Aoife Burns: Burns’ paintings explore the concept of boundaries and divided space, of place and identity.

Rebecca Dawson: Dawson’s practice explores how we interact and use landscapes, and spaces that we inhabit - particularly with environments that are assumed to be 'natural', but rather are constructed.

Claudia Rose McClelland: Claudia is a multi-disciplinary artist utilizing pseudo materiality to contrive a physicality of aberrant beings that lures a psychological disobedience from the spectator’s sentient reality.

Mary Rebecca Morrison: A textile artist living and working in Belfast. With a focus on portraiture work, Mary Rebecca’s work is influenced by her family’s consistent documentation of their lives.

Aimée Nelson: Aimee is a visual artist based in Belfast. Her work examines physical reality, our consciousness and the fragility of perception.

Matthew Wilson: Matthew intimately surveys the terrain of memory; navigating what to say and what to leave unsaid. His work maps place, landscape and material.

You can find more information on the exhibition at https://www.roevalleyarts.com/exhibitions/under-the-same-sun

Seacourt: presents two exhibitions this summer. Joanne Fitzpatrick launches a solo show in Seacourt’s large gallery in July and August with screen prints and cyanotypes inspired by landscape and place. Nathalie Caleyron will showcase lino cut prints in Seacourt’s Member’s Gallery sharing works created during lockdown offering a glimpse into her observations on home and place.

Seacourt is also offering a range of online courses to introduce you to printmaking in the comfort of your own home. Printmaker Clinton Kirkpatrick introduces intaglio printmaking through a free to view tutorial. Stephanie Harrison demonstrates the magical technique of cyanotype printing through a video tutorial and kit to purchase for experiments in the sun.

Seacourt also features in the ever popular Creative Pennisula during the first week in August and they’ll have a week of printmaking demonstrations and practice talks from our exhibiting artists. Visit www.seacourt-ni.org.uk

Golden Thread Gallery: is delighted to be premiering the installation of Suzanne Lacy’s, Across and In-Between, 12th June – 14th August, presented in association with IWM Imperial War Museum, The Whitworth and Ulster University. Co-commissioned and presented as a work-in-progress for the closing season of 14-18 NOW and the Belfast International Arts Festival; the project amplified the voices and experiences of border residents during Brexit negotiations through words, imagery, sound and performance, providing them an opportunity to reclaim the landscape around them.

Across and In-Between will be shown across the entirety of The Golden Thread Gallery. The installation consists of: Border People’s Parliament; a series of portraits, a soundscape and The Yellow Manifesto in Gallery One; The Yellow Line; a 3-screen video projection shown in Gallery Two; and additional photos alongside a 29’ documentary film, Across and In-Between: Voices from the Border in Ireland, shown in the Project Space. For further information visit www.goldenthreadgallery.co.uk

Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich: Cultúrlann Mc Adam Ó Fiaich’s Ballaí Bana Gallery is delighted to host, Artists At The Mill, an exhibition from an ever evolving group of creatives from Conway Mill from 5 August until 30 September 2021. Conway Mill is situated a mile or so away from Cultúrlann on the Falls Road. Rich in history this successful example of preservation now houses multi-use business and community development. The top floor is dedicated to artists and makers of mixed disciplines, including painting, printmaking, glass, ceramics, sculpture, and textiles. For further details visit https://www.culturlann.ie/en/visual-arts

Void: is delighted to present CHOREOGRAPH, the first solo exhibition of Elizabeth Price in Northern Ireland, from 22 June – 21 August 2021. Price’s distinctive film works inhabit the digital world using computer animated voices, graphics and a saturated videography that give the works a dystopic sensibility, exploring the human experience from industrialisation to the digital age. For more about the exhibition and to visit their viewing rooms please go to www.derryvoid.com

Void online workshops: a variety of fun and creative workshops can be found online at www.derryvoid.com, on Void’s Vimeo channel, and also on Facebook and Instagram IGTV @derryvoid so you can go back and forth to them as many times as you would like.

Void Gallery Family Programme

The Curiosity Club
Dates: 31st July  and 7th August

Void Gallery is excited to begin The Curiosity Club. The Engage education space at the gallery will be set up with a number of activities that have been designed by artist Zoe McSparron, with instructions and materials available for you to self-direct through with your kids. https://www.derryvoid.com/event/the-curiosity-club-void/

Eden Project Foyle - 28 August & 4 September
12pm
- details of where to meet will be given upon registration

Join Void to explore the hidden river frontages around Boom Hall and Brook Hall estates through sound, guided by Clare McGee & Barney Toal, Innovate-NI and with artist David Beattie as part of his project Slowtime.

Eden Project Foyle is an exciting & ambitious project that will link the Boom Hall and Brook Hall estates, including previously inaccessible river frontages, transforming these into a new cultural tourism, and community asset helping to drive social, economic and environmental regeneration in the city. The Eden Project and its partners believe this internationally significant union will enable this historic site to become a designed space specifically tailored to explore the potential of people in the landscape.
Spaces for these sound walks are limited. Because of this, we are asking for £2 to secure your place.  Book your ticket here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/eden-project-foyle-tickets-161914936935

CCA Derry-Londonderry presents MODERNISMS, an exhibition of five artists responding to themes of modernism in Northern Ireland. From architecture and infrastructure, to everyday domestic design, the artists are brought together and ask us to look again, revealing the remarkable in the commonplace. From weaving and textiles, tower blocks and fireplaces, abandoned shoe factories and churches, MODERNISMS demonstrates the complex and nuanced influence of modernism on all our lives. Visit www.ccadld.org for further information.

The MAC: present three exhibitions; Ambera Wellmann in the Upper Gallery, Maya Balcioglu in the Tall Gallery and Jaap Pieters in the Sunken Gallery. All exhibitions are available to view in person from now until 8th August 2021.

Ambera Wellmann in the Upper Gallery
This is the first exhibition in the UK and Ireland by Canadian-born and New-York based painter, Ambera Wellmann, whose paintings of amorphous figures resist the binaries of active and passive, male and female.

Maya Balcioglu in the Tall Gallery
Maya's first institutional exhibition consisting large scale works on paper, latex and fabric completed over a 15-year period. Her mark-making hovers around formlessness, reminiscent of stains left from bodily fluids and stigmata like appearances located in an in-between state of consciousness and slumber.

Jaap Pieters in the Sunken Gallery
Dutch artist Jaap Pieters is a stalwart specialist of Super 8mm filmmaking and has created dozens of films on the small-gauge “amateur” medium over the course of four decades. Jaap’s films will be shown on three showreels rotating throughout the duration of the exhibition.

Visitors must book to visit The MAC galleries at www.themaclive.com

Belfast Print Workshop: present five Belfast Print Workshop artists, Danielle, Helen, Josephine, Jonathan and Coby have been hard at work and prepared online workshops for you to try at home.  For full details visit https://www.bpw.org.uk/  

MUSIC

Moving On Music: presents the following live gigs this September and October.

Sunday 12th September, Flook (on tour), Black Box, Belfast

Saturday 18th September, Iarla Ó Lionáird, Úna Monaghan & Kevin Murphy, The MAC, Belfast

Sunday 10th October, Scott Matthews, Duncairn, Belfast

For more information visit http://www.movingonmusic.com/

Northern Ireland Opera: presents,

Summer Recital Series, 4-25 August 2021

Northern Ireland Opera is delighted to continue their partnership with the First Presbyterian Church in Belfast and present four free recitals this summer after having to cancel the 2020 series. Featuring former Festival of Voice artists and the winner of The Irené Sandford Award from the Royal Irish Academy of Music, these lunchtime recitals are the perfect way to enjoy live music again in the heart of Belfast’s city centre. Each recital will start at 1.15pm and last approximately 45 minutes and includes:

  • August 4th – Elaine McDaid (Soprano), David Corr (Baritone) and Frasier Hickland (Pianist) – Northern Ireland Opera
  • August 11th – Anna-Helena Maclachlan (Mezzo-soprano) – Royal Irish Academy of Music
  • August 18th – Jamie Rock (Baritone) and Michael McHale (Pianist)
  • August 25th – Michael McHale (Pianist)

The 11th Glenarm Festival of Voice, 27-29 August 2021

The Glenarm Festival of Voice is now in its eleventh year and after its temporary relocation to Belfast in 2020 the Festival will be back in Glenarm for 2021 and celebrating the last ten years. Events include:

  • Friday 27th August, 8pm: BBC Radio 3 Recital, Glenarm: Ben McAteer (baritone) and pianist Simon Lepper
  • Saturday 28th August 10am-1pm, 2pm-5pm: Outreach events in Glenarm
  • Saturday 28th August, 3pm: A Pint with Puccini at The Londonderry Arms, Carnlough
  • Saturday 28th August, 8pm: BBC Radio 3 Recital, Glenarm: Kathryn Rudge (mezzo-soprano) and pianist Simon Lepper
  • Sunday 29th August, 1pm: BBC Radio 3 Recital, Glenarm: Louise Alder (soprano) and pianist Simon Lepper
  • Sunday 29th August, 7pm: The Glenarm Festival of Voice Competition Finale, broadcast live on BBC Radio Ulster’s ‘Classical Connections’ from Glenarm.

The Devil Made Me Do It, 10 September 2021

Northern Ireland Opera invites you to join us them an hour of devilish arias, duets, and songs in The Devil Made Me Do It as part of the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival 2021. Their charmingly mysterious host ably assisted by some of Northern Ireland’s finest operatic and music theatre performers will take you on a ride through opera and music theatre’s most villainous and tempting stories; but make sure you don’t follow him any further once the music stops! Featuring selections from Faust, Jesus Christ Superstar, Dido and Aeneas, The Rake’s Progress, Alcina, The Turn of the Screw and much more.

NI Opera also presents La Bohème this September.

Northern Ireland Opera announces the return of live opera performances with a unique and exhilarating new production of Puccini’s La Bohème this September. The staging of one of the most loved and timeless masterpieces in the operatic canon marks Cameron Menzies’ first production in front of live audiences since he joined Northern Ireland Opera as Artistic Director midway through the pandemic in February this year.

This bold new interpretation will be brought to life inside the iconic Carlisle Memorial Church in Belfast across four evenings. A historic focal point in the city, this beautifully decayed church provides the perfect atmospheric backdrop to tell the story about a group of Bohemians who are all searching and desperately trying to find their way in life and love. La Bohème will be performed live in front of socially distanced audiences across 4 nights.

Dates: September 18, 20, 23, 25. Please sign up on the website to receive further details www.niopera.com

Conleth Kane: singer-songwriter, actor and advocate for LGBTQ+ rights, Conleth Kane, has released a new remix of his 2019 hit song, Proud, supported by Individual Emergency Resilience Programme (IERP) funding from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Department for Communities. His 2019 track has been remixed by world leading pop music producers, 7th Heaven, and an accompanying video was recently revealed to mark this year’s Belfast Pride celebrations.

The Arts Council’s IERP was designed to provide much-needed financial support to those working in the Creative Economy at a time when essential elements of the arts, cultural and creative sectors had been decimated due to venue closures, festival and event cancellations and the disappearance of live audiences. This emergency funding enabled Conleth to develop and create a video to accompany the new remix.

Originally hailing from Northern Ireland, Conleth Kane trained at the prestigious Arts Educational Schools in London and went on to perform roles on screen as well as starring in musicals in the West End and all over the UK and Ireland before becoming a singer-songwriter. The new track is available now on all major online music platforms at https://ditto.fm/proud-7th-heaven-remixes and you can watch the IERP supported video at https://youtu.be/c6gJnvUEWx0

The City of Derry International Choir Festival:

Internationally-renowned guest artists will include the Grammy Award-winning American a cappella ensemble Chanticleer, described as the “world’s reigning male chorus” by The New Yorker, and known across the globe as the “orchestra of voices”. The Festival will also welcome acclaimed conductor and composer Bob Chilcott, award-winning Derry chamber choir Codetta, and the Ulster Orchestra, for a programme of live and live-streamed concerts during Festival week.

For more information and updates visit www.derrychoirfest.com or follow the City of Derry International Choir Festival on Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram.

Panarts: present PANARTS BELFAST SONGWRITERS™ SERIES, 8pm & 9pm virtual concerts every Saturday night from 8pm on their website, Facebook and YouTube channel featuring some of Northern Ireland’s finest songwriters. Almost forty writers have agreed to perform their original songs In Concert, as part of the PANARTS BELFAST SONGWRITERS™ SERIES and the free shows will feature a wide range of musical styles filmed live. You can follow the free series through the website panarts.org or on Facebook and YouTube at Panarts Belfast Songwriters.

ITMA: 'Drawing from the Well' is an online monthly ITMA series which connects artists with archival materials to inspire new art. To date, nine videos, podcasts and blogs have been created by leading traditional musicians, singers, and dancers, including Louise Mulcahy, Martin Hayes, Edwina Guckian and Cormac Begley. All episodes are free to view online at https://www.itma.ie/drawingfromthewell

Phil Taggart: ChillDaBeats is the brand new show from NI DJ, Phil Taggart. Every week he brings you a soft focus selection of the best alternative chill sounds along with the biggest guests picking some brain soothers in the Soul Food Selection. ChillDaBeats goes live every Sunday. Listen on Spotify at https://open.spotify.com/show/0M2IpL7ldc1Rui2aa9meX3 This podcast series is supported by emergency funding through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Department for Communities.

Tommy Sands and Artsawonder:  In this new online film series, legendary musician, Tommy Sands, films, sings, listens and learns from a singing five times world champion drum major Alan McBride, two young women, Jenna Stevenson and Wendy Graham Hanna, who initiate and drive an Arts hub shop, a rhythmic drum weaver rhythmic drum weaver Damien McKeown and a young woman Bronagh Kelly who lovingly echoes the poetry of her mother.  To watch visit Media | Artsawonder (wixsite.com)

Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich: presents Music Corner, the best of traditional music with great traditional musicians which is streamed live on their Facebook page every Saturday. Visit Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich (facebook.com)

FILM, LITERATURE, DANCE & DRAMA

Crescent Arts Centre: will be running monthly Book Festival events between 21 August 2021 to 22 March 2022. The first event they have lined up features Bernard MacLaverty who will be chatting with writer Lucy Caldwell about his new collection of stories, Blank Pages. This event, along with the other events they have announced thus far, can be found at https://belfastbookfestival.com/whats-on/

The Lyric Theatre: presents the following,

Walls and Windows: 27th -28th August 2021. A world premiere of a new play from Rosaleen McDonagh, this tender, complex and beautiful love story examines how external circumstances pull us apart, when all we really want is to be together. Directed by Jason Byrne, Walls and Windows will be live-streamed from the Abbey Stage to your homes on August 27th and 28th. It will be available on-demand for two weeks until 11th September.

Rough Girls: 4th – 25th September 2021. A brand new play by Tara Lynne O’Neill telling the story of the first all-female football team set in Belfast at the end of the First World War.

The Border Game: 2-23 October 2021. From the award-winning writers Michael Patrick & Oisín Kearney (‘My Left Nut’ and ‘The Alternative’), and Irish Times Theatre Award-winning director Emma Jordan (‘Red’ and ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’); ‘The Border Game’ is a timely and powerful reflection on 100 years of the border and how it has impacted those who live along it. Inspired by 100 testimonies collected by the writers with real people living all over the 300-miles of the border.

Pinocchio the Musical: 26th Nov 2021 – 2nd January 2022. The creative team behind the Lyric’s hit shows “Alice the Musical” and “Peter Pan the Musical” return with a brand new musical version of the greatest magical adventure of all time; “Pinocchio The Greatest Wonder of the Age”.

SADIE at the Lyric: available to watch now on BBC iPlayer at BBC iPlayer - Lights Up - Sadie

The international premiere of an unflinching new play from David Ireland centres on a Belfast woman reflecting on her turbulent life amidst the troubled past. Sharp-tongued cleaner, Sadie, develops an intense, dysfunctional yet passionate relationship with a much younger man triggering a psychological showdown with the remnant demons of her past. She confronts these ghosts, calling out their contribution to the path life took her down. Expect challenging scenes through painful and harrowing subjects and shocking consequences.  Please note, this production contains strong language throughout and scenes that some viewers may find disturbing.  Visit www.lyrictheatre.co.uk

Kabosh: presents 'The Boy on the Bridge' by Julie Dutkiewicz on Tuesday 10th August 2021, 8.15pm, Strand Arts Centre. Join Kabosh to explore the life of James Ellis. Kabosh is thrilled to be working with Julie Dutkiewicz, one of Belfast's most promising writers. This performed reading will be intercut with poignant footage from an interview by Gerry Anderson and examples of James’ film writing work. Duration - 60 minutes. Book tickets at https://www.strandartscentre.com/events/boy_bridge/

Echo Echo Dance Theatre Company: This summer Echo Echo Dance Theatre Company launch their Digital Programme, a series of online bite-sized courses, each designed to encourage the exploration of creativity in movement, in the comfort of your own home. The courses are aimed at different age groups and are all led by the highly experienced artist-teachers of the Echo Echo Ensemble. Each course consists of 8 easy to follow videos of roughly 15-20 minutes long which include a variety of playful warm ups and exercises, some technical instruction and much guidance for the development Visit www.echoechodance.com to find out more and register. Once you have completed the sign-up form you will receive links for the programmes directly to your email address and it’s all completely free of charge!

Declan McConaghy Show: Newry based former BBC broadcaster, Declan McConaghy has created a new series of short films where he talks in-depth to creatives from Newry and the surrounding area who have made a contribution to theatre, music, dance and the performing arts in general. The view the films visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCaH9LxmhE8O1Af3Csk-k6vA/

The Strand Arts Centre: has reopened to the public.  In addition to their cinema programme the Strand Arts Centre is running a summer programme of creative workshops.  With sessions for children and families, and for adults, there is definitely something for everyone.  A wide range of activities will be on offer, from foraging and hula hoop, to creative writing, photography, paper-cutting, yarn-bombing and even stand-up comedy!

All the sessions will be suitable for beginners, and are designed to encourage us all to emerge from lockdown safely, and creatively, and ready for some fun.  Sessions will take place throughout the summer, at a variety of times during the week. All relevant Covid regulations will be adhered to.

Find out more about the classes here: https://www.strandartscentre.com/classes/

COMMUNITY ARTS

Beyond Skin and Strand Arts Centre: presents Youth 4 Peace – Music is the Dialogue on Thursday 12th August as part of the EastSide Arts Festival. This is a youth day concert featuring musicians from Traditional Arts Partnership, Kaya Lewandowska, Cara Monaghan, Kira Topalian, Ziyi Zheng and surprise guests including virtual appearances from musicians from the other side of the globe. Some of the musicians have been collaborating with members of the Afghan Women’s Orchestra. Promises to be an evening of great music and conversations that will inspire and move you. For more information, visit https://www.strandartscentre.com/

Duncairn: has released details of their new programme of digital classes for August – November 2021. Classes include bookbinding for beginners, sketching and drawing, embroidery, poetry, paper art, calligraphy, quilt-making, weaving and more. To book visit www.theduncairn.com

Duncairn Player: all of the previous video projects can now be viewed from the Duncairn Player including The Duncairn Virtual Cabaret, Take 2, Carlingford and the Ring of Guillion Sessions.  Visit Player — The Duncairn

Greater Shantallow Community Arts: has launched their May-September arts programme for young people.  For dance, visual art, gaming, drama, singing, fitness, dj-ing and much more visit the programme at https://online.fliphtml5.com/sfmw/frue

Wheelworks:  is delighted to support you right now with in person and online workshops in everything from digital music making, street art, animation, coding, drama, Virtual reality and much more. All of their workshops are bespoke to suit you and your organisation, whether that's driving to your venue in our mobile studio, the ArtCart, or bringing their professional artists to you virtually to delivery online masterclasses.   To book your perfect digital and arts activities just email lisa@wheelworksarts.com and visit www.wheelworksarts.com

EastSide Arts: check out EastSide Arts’ YouTube channel which includes lots of videos of their past work, event launches and festivals.  They have also been uploading lots of our recent online event recordings to the channel and these range from the series of EastSide Greenways webinars to events that took place during C.S. Lewis Festival.  Visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDZ02s2XSQ6tLcJyD_3S3kQ

EastSide Learning's Covid Year: EastSide Learning team has been sharing a number of highlights from the past year and how they adapted their work during the pandemic on the EastSide Learning Facebook page, these include:

Early years and family support packs
STEM summer school
Bedrock reading programme
Online training-social and emotional wellbeing
Supporting teachers and classroom assistants

You can view all the updates on their Facebook page. 

Eastside also present their Moments of Joy Exhibition which is now on display at Holywood Arches (442-446 Newtownards Road). For this exhibition, local people donated objects that represented a moment of joy they have experienced since March 2020. They hope that by sharing these, you will be inspired to find the things that help when circumstances are challenging.

Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich: is delighted to present their summer programme with events and courses in abundance as they gear up for the indigenous festival of Lúnasa. As we look forward to the easing of restrictions, they are eagerly anticipating the delivery of both in person events and virtual events this summer. In terms of youth, Cultúrlann will be home to two summer schemes, Scéim Samhraidh Chumainn Óige na bhFál in July and Scéim Samhraidh Aisling Óg with plenty of activities to develop and nurture young creative skills. Their gallery spaces are open and awaiting your perusal of beautiful, upcoming exhibitions, Stephen Shaw’s Unconfined in the Dillon Gallery and At My Heart’s Core by Artists at the Mill in the Ballaí Bána.

Cultúrlann continues their 30 year celebrations with journalist John Cooney who will deliver their inaugural Ó Fiaich lecture delving into the life of Cardinal Tómás Ó Fiaich, exploring his keen interest in the preservation of Irish language and impact on the political landscape here in the North. Our Coirneál an Cheoil will continue online allowing all to tune in wherever in the world you may be and we have a host of first class musicians lined up including Rónán Ó Snodaigh, Bernadette Morris, An Chéad Ghlúin Eile and more!

They are also looking forward to the return of fringe festival, Liú Lúnasa which will bring the summer celebrations to a close with a three day Intensive Course, an energetic concert, a panel discussion and flagship event, the Slam poetry with fantastic prizes up for grabs. Visit www.culturlann.ie

Streetwise: Fancy learning how to juggle and other circus skills?! In response to Covid 19 Streetwise Community Circus has developed a team of tutors who are now working via Zoom to reach out to those who can no longer participate in workshops. Following the latest round of restrictions we are now offering free zoom coaching to anyone who feels isolated or would just like to use the opportunity to learn something new under the guidance of some of Northern Ireland's most experienced circus street entertainers. To take advantage of this opportunity all you have to do is email Streetwise on streetwiseathome@gmail.com. Suitable for participants who range in age from 8 to 80 plus.

Arts Care: has a wonderful range of arts activities available online on their Arts Care 4U Premium +, their online arts delivery channel that everyone can access. Arts Care’s new dedicated online arts and well-being workshop resource, ‘Break-Time’, accessed via their website to support the mental, emotional and physical well-being of children and young people through the Arts. New art, music, dance & exercise, drama, creative writing and clown doctor’s CDTV videos will be uploaded regularly and it’s all FREE. Visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQ85xLA2BlQQdrnWBhKw1hw

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