What's On

What's On in the Arts

12th May, 2023

Watch the What's On Guide on NVTV below.


Belfast Tradfest and Summer School: Belfast TradFest Summer Fest will return from 23-29 July 2023, jam-packed full of traditional music, song and dance, with some of the best traditional musicians, singers & dancers from across these islands. Featuring a week-long programme of workshops and a full programme of concerts, talks, lectures, sessions, céilís & festival clubs, this weekend is the only one of its kind in Northern Ireland and brings together both the Irish and the Ulster-Scots musical traditions, in a shared celebration of culture & heritage. Visit www.belfasttraditionalmusic.com for the full programme.


c21 Theatre Company present ‘Expecting’, a play containing a series of interweaving monologues and duologues in both English and sign language by Belfast Playwright Charis McRoberts. Both productions have been developed in collaboration with d/Deaf artist Paula Clarke and feature d/Deaf and hearing artists. The ‘Expecting’ play will tour the following regional arts venues:

Friday 12 May, 8pm - Island Arts Centre, Lisburn

Saturday 13 May, 8pm, Marketplace Theatre, Armagh

Friday 19 May 8pm – Newry Town Hall

Saturday 20 May, 8pm Courtyard Theatre, Newtownabbey

Cre8 Theatre ‘Sleeping Beauty’ tour dates:

Saturday 13 May, 2pm, Marketplace Theatre, Armagh

Friday 19 May, 11am Newry Arts Centre

Saturday 20 May, 2pm Courtyard Theatre, Newtownabbey

Visit www.c21theatrecompany.com for details.

Accidental Theatre: Visit www.accidentaltheatre.co.uk

Lyric Theatre: presents a new programme for 2022/23 with highlights including

  • Country and Irish, 16-17 May. Presented by Fight2Flight Theatre in Association with Smock Alley Theatre. Peter Gowen takes the lead in Patrick McCabe’s Beckett-esque one-man show. Meet Donie Burris who overcomes his troubles (which include his treacherous girlfriend, his overbearing Mum and the Midford Mafia) by imagining himself as “The star of his own gangster movie”. Country and Irish is essentially the story of a man at the end of his tether who sets out to tell a story like no other; none you’ve ever heard before. Directed by Conor Hanratty, McCabe’s triumphant theatrical display has been picking up rave reviews and great enthusiastic audience response.
  • Amadan presents, GEPETTO on 26th, 27th & 28th May 2023. Geppetto is a brand new children's production from Amadan Ensemble premiering at the Lyric Theatre. Geppetto is the story of a lonely old man, grieving the loss of his wife and isolated from the world outside his workshop. He spends his days pottering in his repair shop, half-heartedly fixing broken things, never quite getting to the bottom of the pile of these once loved but now discarded items. His small and solitary life is interrupted by the unexpected arrival of a mysterious visitor that brings his broken things to life; a lamp causes havoc, a radio bursts into song, and a Hoover is determined to cause trouble. Geppetto is slowly pulled out of his lonely existence and into a world full of hope and opportunity. He’s finally able to move through life no longer weighed down by loss. As we leave him, the mysterious visitor has one last gift to bestow - one story’s end is just another story’s beginning.
  • The Beauty Queen Of Leenane, 27 May – 1 July 2023. A contemporary classic by Martin Mc Donagh. In an isolated cottage in Connemara, Maureen Folan leads a lonely life with Mag, her demanding, manipulative mother. With the arrival of an unexpected admirer, Maureen finally sees the possibility of escaping her dismal life. However, Mag has other ideas, and the two women are plunged into a desperate conflict which leads to a shocking conclusion. The Beauty Queen of Leenane is one of playwright Martin McDonagh’s (The Banshees of Inisherin Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri;The Lieutenant of Inishmore) finest achievements. Winner of four Tony Awards on Broadway and nominated for an Olivier Award, the play conjures up the unbearable tension and loneliness of an isolated existence. It is not to be missed.

For further details on these and to view all events visit www.lyrictheatre.co.uk

Linen Hall Library: the Linen Hall Library is a truly unique institution. Founded in 1788, it is the oldest library in Belfast. The library is free for all to enter and enjoy. The Linen Hall Library offers a year-round programme of arts and cultural events featuring authors, academics, historians, performers, and much more. To view the full events programme visit www.linenhall.com

Grand Opera House: presents a series of shows this month and next including the highlights below:

  • Good Vibrations, 9-20 May

Returning by hugely popular demand, the Lyric Theatre’s sell-out production Good Vibrations débuts at the Grand Opera House. This staged musical version of the award-winning movie charts the life of Belfast punk legend Terri Hooley, a radical, rebel and music-lover.

This is the 1970s Belfast, conflict is shutting down the city. While all Terri’s friends take sides and take up arms, he opens a record shop Good Vibrations on ‘the most bombed half-mile in Europe’. Here he discovers a compelling voice of resistance in the city’s underground punk scene. Galvanising the young musicians into action, Terri is the unlikely leader of a motley band of kids and punks. Join Terri and the gang on their mission to create a new community, an alternative Ulster, and to bring his city back to life!

Other Grand Opera House highlights include,

  • Johannes Radebe: Freedom Unleashed, 25-27 May
  • The SpongeBob Musical 30 May – 3 June
  • The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, 6-10 June
  • Vote DLA, 13-17 June
  • The King and I, 20-24 June
  • Colin Murphy, 29 June – 1 July
  • Oliver, 20-22 July
  • Demon Dentist, 26-29 July
  • Northern Ireland Opera Tosca, 9,12,14 & 16 September

For tickets and the full programme please visit www.goh.co.uk

Millennium Forum Derry-Londonderry: presents a new season of music, comedy, theatre and more. Highlights include:

  • Strictly Ballroom, 22-27 May
  • Menopause the Musical, 28 May
  • Tom Allen, 8 June
  • Buddy – The Musical, 8-12 Aug

For the full programme of events visit www.millenniumforum.co.uk

THE MAC: presents a fantastic programme of events with highlights including:

  • Jazz Up the 80s with the Jay Raynar Sextet, 13 May, Restaurant critic Jay Rayner, undoubtedly the best jazz pianist in Britain of all the judges on MasterChef, leads an ensemble of top flight musicians through a vivid night of the very best of song-writing and jazz.
  • Queer Set Dancing. Part of the MACtivate programme in association with The Rainbow Project, our fortnightly Queer Set Dancing class with Alexa Moore is specifically beginner-friendly. Join Alexa and the group on select Thursdays from 6.30pm-8.30pm for a fun class with no expectation of any prior dancing experience. The class is run by a queer woman and aims to create a welcoming and friendly environment for LGBTQ+ people and allies to learn a new dance, have some fun and meet new people.

Visit www.themaclive.com to view a full programme of events and exhibitions.

DU Dance (NI): presents Belfast Boys, physical dance theatre for boys aged 7-11 years at the Crescent Arts Centre. Classes at 2-3pm every Saturday. No experience is necessary. Book at info@dudanceni.com

Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich: presents

  • Poetry Jukebox. Poetry Jukebox are #ChangingTheMessage! This project aims to share beautiful, profound and life-affirming words and change the words on our streets, opening hearts and minds, putting poetry to work where it belongs: everywhere, for everyone. As well as pressing buttons on the physical jukebox outside the Cultúrlann, poetry-lovers will be able to listen online at www.quotidian.ie.

Bruiser Theatre Company: is proud to present a live theatre tour of their critically-acclaimed production of Mojo Mickybo by Belfast playwright, Owen McCafferty in NI and the Republic of Ireland this May and June.

Mojo Mickybo shows the friendship between two boys growing up in Belfast – a friendship that at first is immune to the sectarian violence taking place around them, but which nonetheless is ultimately destroyed by it.
Mojo and his mate Mickybo are two nine-year-old boys from opposing sides of the sectarian divide. They are 'thick as two small thieves', playing headers, being mouthy, building huts, spitting from cinema balconies and re-enacting their favourite movie, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. They are young cowboys in the making, with the violence of The Troubles only obliquely impacting on them – until finally their friendship is destroyed in a way that they only later come to understand.

This is pure, undiluted storytelling in Bruiser’s trademark dynamic physical style. Fast-paced, darkly funny and action-packed. The show is brought to life by two of our finest local actors, John Travers and Conor Quinn, who seamlessly slip in and out of multiple roles and imaginary worlds.

Catch the play in Belfast at Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich on 11 May.

For all tour dates visit www.bruisertheatrecompany.com

Crescent Arts Centre: presents,

  • Stitch and Natter. On a Saturday morning, The Crescent runs free Stitch and Natter sessions in the café. Customers are encouraged to stop in for as long or as little as they’d like, and to come to all or just a few of the sessions.
    • This Apr - Jun term will be our 2nd time running this free activity and the the sessions will be focusing on English Paper Piecing Patchwork. This block will last for 5 weeks.
    • All materials will be provided (along with tea, coffee, and biscuits)
    • The finished patchwork will be framed and displayed in The Crescent building
  • Creative Learning: Spring Term (17 Apr – 3 Jun). The latest course and workshop term has started. Lots of activity happening in the building, and lots of activity yet to start; https://crescentarts.org/courses

Visit www.crescentarts.org

Seamus Heaney HomePlace: has releases details of their spring and summer programme. Taking place from May to August 2023 at Seamus Heaney HomePlace, the programme is overflowing with brilliant musicians, poets, authors, and artists. Highlights include:

  • Setting the tone for a wonderful summer season is ‘Ellipses’ by Maria McManus and Keith Acheson, featuring the very talented Arco String Quartet.
  • Poet Alice McCullough brings her critically acclaimed one-woman show ‘Earth to Alice’ to The Helicon on 12th May, this event is taking place in conjunction with the Northern Ireland Mental Health Arts Festival, which runs from 11th – 21st May 2023.
  • Audiences will enjoy several genres of music throughout the season, featuring renowned performers such as Mundy (27th May), Lisa Lambe (3rd June), Ruth McGinley (1st July), Luka Bloom (8th July) and Colm Mac Con Iomaire (26th August).
  • A film screening of the Oscar-nominated Irish-language feature film An Cailín Ciúin (The Quiet Girl) is planned for 10th June. This coming-of-age drama tells the poignant tale of a young girl sent to live with distant relatives in eighties rural Ireland.
  • Playwright, author and poetry aficionado Roger McGough brings ‘Alive & Gigging’ to HomePlace near the end of June. This will be Roger’s second visit to The Helicon following a memorable sell-out appearance in 2019.
  • Then there is the special announcement of the debut performance of Brian Bilston in The Helicon in November. Brian Bilston has gathered a huge following on social media and has been described as ‘Twitter’s unofficial Poet Laureate.’
  • The highlight of the summer is a weekend of events to mark the tenth anniversary of the death of Seamus Heaney. Seamus Heaney HomePlace will welcome a number of award-winning poets from across Ireland and the UK over the course of this commemorative weekend. The weekend will close with a poignant screening of Seamus Heaney and the music of what happens. This special weekend is taking place from 25th - 27th August 2023 at Seamus Heaney HomePlace, Bellaghy and is part of a full programme of events happening throughout the summer. A weekend pass for all five events is available to book.

Visit www.seamusheaneyhome.com for tickets and information.

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.facebook.com/DMCSHOW ) or https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCaH9LxmhE8O1Af3Csk-k6vA


Portico of Ards: presents.


Programme: Barbaric Beauty

From the exotic allure of the orient, the wild rituals of the Moors and Native Americans to the rugged hornpipes of the English and the captivating melancholy of Scottish ballads, folk songs and dances have long held a fascination to the ears of the European musicians. The London Handel Players bring together a wide selection of this rarely-heard music by composers such as Telemann, Vivaldi, Schmelzer, Purcell, Matteis and Rameau.


Programme: Serenade to Music

In music fit for a summer’s evening, the Ulster Consort presents well-known works by some of the giants of the British and Irish music scene of the 19th and 20th centuries. These include Dublin-born Charles Villiers Stanford, and Armagh-born Charles Wood, both of whom taught Ralph Vaughan Williams, as did Hubert Parry. In contrast, Edward Elgar was largely self-taught, but is now regarded as one of the finest composers of his generation. Celebrate this rich legacy from these islands in the feast of choral and organ music.


Winners of the 2019 Belhaven Bursary for Innovation in Music – the most significant prize in Scotland, matched only by the Mercury Prize – Kinnaris Quintet burst onto the scene in 2017 with a unique, highly emotive, energetic, and powerful sound. Their music has been described as ‘euphoric’ and combines Scottish and Irish traditional music with Bluegrass, Classical, Scandinavian and Appalachian influences. Uplifting, fresh music…created by three fiddles, mandolin and guitar. Expect influences of Trad Scottish & Irish, Bluegrass and Classical.

Other events include:

  • 21 May, Anne Page Organ Recital
  • 27 May, Tribute: Patsy Cline and the Country Divas
  • 2 June, The Shamrock Tenors
  • 11 June, Music From The Movies Organ Recital

To view the full programme visit www.porticoards.com

For tickets visit www.porticoards.com

Belfast Music Society: What better way to mark turning 100 than with a stunning concert featuring the world-renowned clarinettist, Michael Collins, and his talented friends. Taking place on 20th May at 7:30pm in the historic surroundings of Stormont Parliament Buildings, this long-awaited concert promises to be a highlight of the classical music calendar. Originally planned for 2021, the centenary celebration was postponed due to the pandemic, but the Society is now delighted to be able to bring this outstanding performance to music lovers in Northern Ireland and beyond.

The programme for the evening will feature three exceptional pieces of music. The first, Weber's Introduction, Theme and Variations for Clarinet and String Quartet, will showcase the exceptional virtuosity of Michael Collins. Ferguson's Octet, is a charming and lively work that showcases the talents of the ensemble and for the grand finale, Schubert's Octet, is a sublime masterpiece that is considered one of the greatest chamber works ever composed.

This centenary celebration concert is a must-hear event for all lovers of classical music. Don't miss your chance to witness Michael Collins and Friends in action, performing three stunning pieces of music in the beautiful surroundings of Stormont Parliament Buildings. For tickets visit www.belfastmusicsociety.org

Jamie Thompson Adjunct Ensemble: Irish composer and performer Jamie Thompson has launched his new album with support from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland ACES programme. The album is called Sovereign Bodies / Ritual Taxonomy and features innovative electroacoustic music.

Thompson’s Adjunct Ensemble of highly celebrated musicians consists of a female opera singer, a turntablist, a spoken-word poet, a jazz-punk trio and soloists. Sovereign Bodies / Ritual Taxonomy is a remarkable artistic achievement like nothing you have heard before. The album was created through a mixture of improvisation, notated music, and experimental hip-hop, collage and electroacoustic production approaches. Sovereign Bodies / Ritual Taxonomy is due to be released internationally on Diatribe Records as a limited edition set of three postcards as well as all major digital retail and streaming services.

Northern Ireland Opera: presents,

A Midsummer Night’s Dream on 12 May at Belfast’s Ulster Hall in an evening of music with the Ulster Orchestra which starts with Schumann’s Violin Concerto performed by Sayaka Shoji and conducted by Dinis Sousa.

Then, in the company of a female chorus from Northern Ireland Opera with soloists Catherine Donnelly and Mary McCabe, we head to an Athenian forest for an hour, for Mendelssohn’s complete incidental music for A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Skittish fairies, star-crossed lovers and even the braying of a donkey find their way into the score, which matches the darting, whimsical Shakespeare tale to perfection. For tickets visit www.ulsterorchestra.org.uk

On 19 May at The Harbour Commissioner’s Office in Belfast NI Opera also present Chorus! An evening of opera choruses. Following on from the huge success of the 2022 Opera Chorus Development program and their performances in the highly acclaimed production of La Traviata at the Grand Opera House Belfast, we proudly present our 2023 Northern Ireland Opera Chorus as the feature of this very special showcase. Our choristers have become one of the greatest assets for our company and through this specialised program they have worked with industry professionals including vocal coaches, conductors, language coaches, choreographers and movement directors from highly prestigious operas house all over the UK and Europe.

This concert puts these highly accomplished artists as the centre focus of opera and allows us to perform many varied styles and periods of writing for an opera chorus. Come and enjoy well-loved favourites as well as some lesser know delights from Monteverdi, Wagner, Puccini, Verdi, Smetana and John Adams. Book tickets at www.niopera.com

NI Opera also returns to The Grand Opera House in 2023 with Puccini’s Tosca, after their critically acclaimed production of La Traviata in 2022. Tosca is an operatic thriller set in Rome, taking place over one day, making it one of the most intense and exciting operas ever written. Floria Tosca is a beautiful soprano, deeply in love with painter Mario Cavaradossi. When the corrupt Chief of Police, Baron Scarpia, discovers that Mario has been helping political prisoners escape, he sees a way of forcing Tosca into the ultimate sacrifice to satisfy his lust. Scarpia will entrap her and try to get rid of her lover… who will survive?

Directed and conceptualised by Cameron Menzies, performed with the Ulster Orchestra and the NI Opera Chorus on 9, 12, 14 & 16 September. Visit www.niopera.com

Ulster Orchestra: presents

  • 12 May, Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • 20 May, On Your Doorstep, Seamus Heaney HomePlace
  • 26 May, Bella Italia
  • 17 June, CBeebies Ocean Adventure with the Ulster Orchestra, Millennium Forum, Derry-Londonderry
  • 18 June, CBeebies Ocean Adventure with the Ulster Orchestra, Waterfront Hall, Belfast
  • 23 June, On Your Doorstep, Bangor Abbey

For further information and to view the new season programme please visit www.ulsterorchestra.org.uk

Oh Yeah Centre Belfast:

The NI Music exhibition at Oh Yeah is the only permanent exhibit for popular music in Northern Ireland. There is much to see, including a series of storyboards documenting and plotting the history and the stories of Folk, Punk, Rock, Jazz and more. Exhibition Opening Times, Mon – Fri: 10am-4pm, Sat: 12-5pm. To enquire about a visit, or for further info and group bookings please contact info@ohyeahbelfast.com or call 02890310845

Moving On Music: presents,

  • 25 May, Richard Dawson (folk/other/roots), The Empire Music Hall
  • 2 June, Anna B Savage (contemporary/folk/electronic/other), The Deer’s Head

Visit www.movingonmusic.com

The Black Box: For further information visit www.blackboxbelfast.com

Scott’s Jazz Club: Scott's Jazz Club runs a weekly concert in Ballyhackamore club 1a Sandown Road every Friday Night from 9pm. The club provides a welcoming environment for world class jazz music to be experienced in a concert setting. For upcoming performances visit Scott's Jazz Club (scottsjazzclub.com)

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

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)


Foyle Obon: presents a special concert of Taiko Drumming and Bon Odori Dance!

Foyle Obon is delighted to announce that on the evening of Saturday May 20th they will be staging a very special concert in the amphitheatre at the Playtrail. These are difficult times for many organisations and this year they are unable to bring their usual larger Obon Festival event. However, we are still determined to bring some joy and #taikolove to their wee corner of the Racecourse Road.

The amphitheatre stage will feature performances from local Taiko drum players, including many of their community workshop participants who have been waiting for this moment to show everyone their talent. This concert is the highlight of their year-round cultural outreach programme where participants of all ages and abilities have been learning and taking part Taiko workshops. They will come together onstage to showcase their skills and celebrate their achievements. They will also have taiko performances from their own Ibuki Taiko performance group.

The wonderful Hannari Traditional Japanese dancers will be performing beautiful dance pieces and will also lead the audience in some Bon Odori dance, an opportunity for the whole audience to join in (no experience or technique necessary!).

The concert will run from 7.30pm – 9.30pm. Gates open at 7pm. Tea and Coffee will be available to purchase thanks to the lovely Stephanie from Offing Coffee. Tickets are £5 (under 3s free) and are available online from https://tinyurl.com/yp6jddwh

Crescent Arts Centre: has a new term of classes to book and enjoy now. Fancy learning to speak some Italian before your holiday to Italy this year? Well now’s your chance! From visual arts, language classes, acting, dance, music making and more, there’s something to tantalise all tastes. Visit www.crescentarts.co.uk

Duncairn: presents

13 May, Sam Amidon

21 May, Lumiere

22 Sep, Flook

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

The Duncairn also has a range of workshops and craft classes and courses. For further details visit www.theduncairn.com

Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich: presents,

  • Irish Language Intensive Course. Intensive courses are a great way to boost your language skills in a short space of time. The course will be both motivating and informative and will take your confidence in the Irish language to another level. The levels we offer are: Bunrang|Beginner , Meanrang | Intermediate , Ardrang | Advanced . Please email sinead@culturlann.ie for more information
  • Airneál na nÓg, 19|04|23 - 15|06|23. Ranganna 1 – 7 | 4:00pm - 5:00pm, £30. Airneál na nÓg returns under the direction of Caitríona Gribben and will give children the chance to immerse themselves in music. There will be a variety of activities developing young people’s skills in the arts and Irish culture, focusing on the tin whistle and singing, and of course a lot of fun along the way. This is an 8 week course.
  • Cultúrlann’s Drama School ‘Aisling Óg’ will start back from 22 April – 24 June, £30. This is a great opportunity for children from Primary 1 and up to build on their confidence, conversational skills and acting abilities. All whilst making new friends and having great fun. We explore every aspect of the arts including dance, art, music and drama to fulfil an exciting and engaging programme. We also produce an end of term performance to show off all our hard work.
  • Don’t miss Plúra-Lúra, Nóra Bheag, Daideo and all their friends with their stories, songs and dances that small children will enjoy while enhancing their educational development. There will be plenty of storytelling, puppets and art activities to keep the little ones entertained. Na Bopóga is a perfect activity for young children and guardians. 22 April – 13 May, £3 per week.
  • A new season of Babaithe Cultúir (Culture Babies), has started with the next days on 02|05|23 and 06|12|23. Babaithe Cultúir offers a range of interactive and creative experiences that support young children’s creative expression by enabling them to try new things, and the freedom to get as messy and as creative as they want, in a safe, fun and welcoming Irish language environment. Babaithe Cultúir will help to build very young children’s self-confidence, interpersonal and technical skills as well as offering a wonderful way to spend one-on-one time with your child. Delivered in Irish, everyone is welcome regardless of fluency in the Irish Language. Suitable for ages 0-4.
  • Join Cultúrlann for a beautiful concert as they celebrate the coming of Bealtaine and the beauty of nature through music with the majestic Gráinne Holland and friends on 13 May 2023.

Visit www.culturlann.ie

Greater Shantallow Community Arts: presents Spill The Tae Youth Led Podcast from the young people at Studio2/GSCA. This amazing group of creative young people have launched their very own podcast and it can be found on Spotify or Apple Podcast. The young people plan, host, interview and edit the Podcast. To date they have interviewed some of their local MLA’s, Councillors, survivors and local Derry’s own Serena Terry, creator of Mammy Banter. As well as this they have a voice and a safe place where they can openly talk about mental health and what it means to them. You can find the podcast on Spotify or Apple Podcast but also by clicking this link below.


Eden Place Arts Centre: has an exciting range of courses and workshops to get your creative juices flowing including wood sculpture, Inner Landscapes, Abstract Art, Ceramics, Painting for Beginners, Contemporary Botanical Watercolours, Landscape Painting Life Painting, Spinning and Weaving plus Portrait Painting, among others. All courses are designed for adults aged 18+. Visit www.edenplaceartscentre.com

Wheelworks: unique to WheelWorks Arts is their state of the art ArtCart — a mobile arts studio that travels to your venue and opens up to provide an additional studio space for workshops and is packed full to the brim with digital equipment such as ipads, music and film making technology. Virtual ArtCart activities take place at your own venue. Where outdoor space is limited, Wheelworks bring the ArtCart creativity inside your centre. They also come with a full outdoor suite — marquees, stage sound, lighting and outdoor heaters.

This unique space allows your young people the opportunity to experience professional equipment in a custom-made studio. It allows your centre to offer a range of socially distance spaces and utilises outdoor space. This Halloween they have a selection of fun, 2 hour projects to offer your young people, aged 10-18, in a variety of traditional and digital artforms! To book your perfect digital and arts activities just email lisa@wheelworksarts.com and visit www.wheelworksarts.com

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. 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


Queen Street Studios (QSS): is delighted to host coHERE, a group show by Year 1 students from Belfast School of Art MFA in Gallery 1. Exhibition Dates: 11th to 25th May 2023. General opening hours: Monday – Thursday, 10am-5pm. The MFA in Belfast is a two-year programme - with each year culminating in a professional exhibition either on-campus or with an external organisation. This is the MFA 1st year cohort's (a peer group of local, national and international students) first exhibition together and acts as valuable professional and practical experience before they embark on their final year.

Exhibiting Artists:Alannah Bates, Elaine McGinn, Emma Stewart, Finn Nichol, Jenny King, Katie Ballentine, Lauren Rushbury-Reynolds, Liam McNaney, Louise Kennedy, Maeve Boef-Smith, Oisin McDonnell, Patrick Maguire, Pauline Talbot, Rachel Kavanagh, Rebecca Morrow, Rhys Murphy, Tracy McCoey.

QSS is also delighted to host Future Works in Gallery 2. Exhibition Dates: 4th to 25th May 2023. Future Works is a collection of curated work from participants in the recently established Belfast Met HND Product design with ceramics. QSS Belfast presents a collection of curated work from participants in the recently established HND Product design with ceramics, a two-year full-time course in Belfast Metropolitan College.

At the latest COP Climate Change Summit, world governments have further committed to achieving ‘net zero’ carbon emissions. Each of us, as individuals and members of communities, has a part to play in changing our own behaviours. As creative practitioners we may also play a role in influencing the behaviour of others.

Each of the participants in this exhibition has responded to the complexity of climate change through an analysis of personal and social impact, microplastics, water conservation, carbon footprints, alternative food sources and nuclear proliferation, and explored a range of imaginative solutions in clay and other media.

Exhibitors list: Alec Chambers, Annemarie Mullan, Corinne Price, Logan, Danielle Morgan, Denise Mcauley, Joanna Mules, Margaret Moore, Riley Kennedy, Sandra Kerr, Sophie Brown, Megan Rooney, Santa Tutane.

Visit www.queenstreetstudios.net

Seacourt Print Workshop: presents, A Life in Print and Paint, an exhibition by JEAN DUNCAN 1933-2018 13th May - 4 August at Seacourt Print Workshop, The Old Bank building, 75 Main Street, Bangor.

‘A life in paint and print…’ is an exhibition looking back over the work of our Seacourt Print Workshop’s co-founder Jean Duncan in our new city centre premises.

The exhibition features prints and paintings from the Duncan family’s personal collection, Seacourt’s archive and Jean’s friends and it showcases the diversity and vibrance of Jean’s work and her contribution to the visual arts here in Northern Ireland.

The Citizens Wallpaper Project 2023: The Citizens Wallpaper is an artistic project, led by experienced international photojournalists, artists and workshop leaders. It benefits the local community by giving the participants skills and techniques in citizens’ journalism and photojournalism using the latest technologies. The project engages communities in the creation of a visual representation of their lives, traditions and cultures. A photographic exhibition by APAC, Belfast’s CPA and Ballymoney camera clubs, will display 24 representations from the Citizen’s Wallpaper project’s four canvasses. The exhibition can be visited by the public at APAC’s online Eirene Gallery from 23 March – 23 July, visit www.apacfoundation.org

Ulster Museum: presents, The Druthaib's Ball, the 2021 Turner Prize-winning installation by the Belfast-based artists collectively known as Array Collective. They are the first artists from Northern Ireland to win the prestigious Turner Prize. The group of eleven artists from the north and south of Ireland, England and Italy all live and work in Belfast creating collaborative actions in response to socio-political issues affecting them and their communities.

The Druthaib's Ball is on display at the Ulster Museum until 3 September 2023. The acquisition to the Ulster Museum collection was supported by the Art Fund and the Department for Communities. Visit www.ulstermuseum.org

R-Space: McCaw Allan – a tea towel collection runs from 22nd April – 19th May 2023 at R-Space Gallery (32 Castle Street, Lisburn) and online via R-Space Social media channels and www.rspacelisburn.com

In the 18th Century tea towels were companion objects, found alongside the finest chinaware and crystal, designed to match the other table linens. Fast forward 200 years and the tea towel had become essentially an undervalued yet accessible and ‘democratic’ art form bringing creativity and design into households across Ireland. Alongside Belfast and Lisburn, Lurgan was one of the leading centres of linen production in Ulster and this exhibition celebrates the work of one Lurgan company in particular. McCaw, Allan & Co Ltd, now part of the Samuel Lamont Group, was founded in 1904, a partnership between Robert Johnston McCaw and Harry Allan.

R-Space Gallery has also received a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £99,352 for an exciting heritage project, Northern Ireland’s Linen Biennale, which will take place in Lisburn and throughout NI. Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, this project will feature a full programme of events, initiatives and community outreach that will celebrate the heritage, and future, of linen and flax on the Island. The 2023 Linen Biennale will run from 26 July - 26 August 2023 and partners will include PRONI, Northern Ireland National Museums, and Portview Trade Centre.

Belfast Exposed: presents,

Bank Gallery: Blinded by the very force it imagined it could handle by Donovan Wylie, 20th April – 28 July. Belfast Exposed is delighted to present Blinded by the very force it imagined it could handle, a new film from Donovan Wylie and Peter Mann. The work examines the enduring legacy and architecture of the Troubles, as we mark the 25th Anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement, and features never before seen footage from the demolition of the notorious Maze/Long Kesh Prison in 2007. Blinded by the very force it imagined it could handle builds on work done by Wylie as part of his landmark exhibition The Maze (2004) - which was shown at Belfast Exposed - that saw Wylie given access to the Maze/Long Kesh site as in stood empty in the post-Good Friday Agreement political landscape.

Gallery 1: The Jerwood/Photoworks Awards 4 Touring Exhibition from 6th April – 20th May 2023. Since 2015, the Jerwood/Photoworks Awards have provided a major opportunity for UK-based artists on a biennial basis. Specifically for artists in the first ten years of their careers and who use photography in their work, the Awards encourage the creation of new work and provide a significant milestone in an emerging artist's career. The current awardees are Heather Agyepong and Joanne Coates. Visit www.belfastexposed.org

The MAC: presents,

Upper Gallery – At The Table, 7 April to 2 July 2023. At The Table brings socially and politically engaged practices into The MAC’s core gallery programming. It is their first major exhibition developed from MACtivate - the work The MAC do with their five Associate Partners which speaks to some of the most pressing and challenging issues in our society including mental ill health, LGBTQIA+ rights, reproductive rights, housing injustice and the rights of people seeking asylum. This exhibition has been co-designed with people and communities connected to their Associate Partners - The Rainbow Project, Participation and the Practice of Rights, Alliance for Choice, Action Mental Health and Extern.

The Tall Gallery - Louise Wallace: Midnight Feast, 7-13 August 2023. Louise Wallace produces work that is deliberately provocative, utilising a palette of lush colour to create images that draw on abstraction and Surrealism to transform the suburban into scenes that hover between the familiar and the uncanny. Visit www.themaclive.com

Belfast Print Workshop: is celebrating 45 Years of Belfast Print Workshop with an exhibition at their premises at Cotton Court in Belfast. Belfast Print Workshop still has thirteen of the original members who were there at the beginning and it is a home for another generation of artists who are now establishing themselves. The Workshop has been a dynamic home for printmakers and it is a pleasure to acknowledge its contribution to the arts in Northern Ireland as we celebrate forty five years of growth and development with this exhibition. Visit www.bpw.org.uk

Craft Northern Ireland: for more information visit www.craftni.org

Golden Thread Gallery: presents fully conscious movements, fully different time, an exhibition by Dorothy Hunter, 25/03/23- 20/05/23. In March 2023 The Golden Thread Gallery will present new work in the project space by Dorothy Hunter titled fully conscious movements, fully different time. Having been awarded ACES from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, the exhibition in the Project Space will focus on the changing underground terrain in the caves of Fermanagh and Cavan, through video and installation artwork. Hunter uses careful interventions within her installations, creating space to contemplate different geographic sites and aid our interpretation of time and space. She is interested in different modes of displaying artwork and the act of collecting. Visit www.goldenthreadgallery.co.uk

Cultúrlann McAdam Ó Fiaich: Visit www.culturlann.ie

 VOID Gallery: presents Re_sett_ing_s, from 4 March to 3 June 2023. In October 2022, Re_sett_ing_s – a collaborative exhibition between Locky Morris and Jaki Irvine – opened at The Complex Gallery, Dublin. The artists, who are probably best known for working solo, were approached separately by Mark O’ Gorman speculating on ‘hidden connections’. Unbeknownst to him, they had a close friend in common, artist Anne Tallentire, whose Setting Out 3 (2021), with its yellow builder’s string and hints at musicality, acted as a kind of starting point and touchstone for the development of the work.

Special event: - Locky Morris & Jaki Irvine - Re_sett_ing_s_Knotsat Void Gallery, Derry-Londonderry, 22 May - 4 June 2023, kindly supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland’s Organisations Digital Evolution Award, thanks to The National Lottery. In conjunction with the current exhibition at Void Gallery - Re_sett_ing_s - artists Locky Morris and Jaki Irvine present Re_sett_ing_s_Knots as a billboard display located at Strand Road & Garden City, Derry, from 22 May - 4 June 2023. Visit www.derryvoid.com

CCA, Derry-Londonderry: presents

SEAMS, 1 April – 3 June 2023.

SEAMS is a solo exhibition by Laura Wilson comprising three installations including a significant new body of work entitled Winding then Winding. Laura is interested in how everyday materials such as bricks, textile, wheat, salt and bread dough transmit historical and embodied knowledge between people over time and place. Laura develops research-led projects, working with specialists and experts to communicate relationships between materiality, memory and tacit knowledge, explored through sculpture, performance, drawings and video. This exhibition is a survey of Laura’s recent works connected by the body, learning, movement and labour. Visit www.ccadld.org


ArtisAnn Gallery, 70 Bloomfield Avenue, Belfast, BT5 5AE

Tue – Fri: 11am to 6pm ; Sat: Noon to 5pm

  • Standing by the Water’s Edge - An Exhibition by Keith Ayton, Wed 3rd to Sat 27th May 2023. Keith Ayton was born in Derry in 1960, and graduated from the University of Ulster with a BA(Hons) in Fine Art in 1981. His work encompasses various forms of fine art, painting, photography and printmaking. The broad subject matter is based on the Irish landscape, climate and culture, and how he reacts to it. His work is currently in private collections in UK, USA, Australia and Europe.
  • Young Belfast Artists Exhibition, Wed 7th June to Sat 1st July 2023. Celebrating the 7th birthday of the ArtisAnn Gallery with an exhibition by nine of the most exciting artists who have appeared in their annual Emerging Artists shows. Artists include: Leah Davis, Trina Hobson, Santa Leimane, Aimee Melaugh, Saffron Monks-Smith, Aimée Nelson, Lauren Reynolds, Amber Rossi and Irene Sweeney. These young female artists are just at the start of their careers, and they have already been making waves with their work being shown internationally to great acclaim.
  • The Name of the Water by Karen Daye-Hutchinson and Déirdre Kelly, Wed 5th July to Sat 26th August 2023. The works made in Venice & Ireland, are an ongoing dialogue with the symbolic language of maps, using the aesthetics of cartography. Karen Daye-Hutchinson shows print and bookworks made while on residency at Scuola Internazionale di Grafica Venezia recipient of the RE Fellowship. Déirdre Kelly shows shifting floating worlds, collage works on paper created while on residency at the Ballinglen Visual Arts Foundation in the West of Ireland.

All artworks are available to buy. You can also buy art from this exhibition through the Arts Council supported Own Art scheme which gives you an interest-free loan over 10 months. Visit www.artisann.org