Galway International Arts Festival unveils in-person and digital programme

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Galway Daily arts Galway International Arts Festival unveils in-person and digital programme

Galway International Arts Festival has announced the programme of live and digital events that will bring life to Galway this Autumn.

Due to COVID-19, the arts festival has been pushed back from its usual July dates, and will run from August 28 – September 18 this year.

With the extra time to make things safer, visitors and local will get to enjoy an exciting programme of live events in theatre, music and visual arts, as well as this year’s programme of First Thought Talks.

Building on last year’s festival, which saw everything take place online, there will still be an enhanced digital offering this year, with many events live streaming, or including a view on demand option.

This will allow people to engage with the arts festival in the manner which suits them best, and can even help bring the craic to a wider audience of people that can’t make it to Galway for whatever reason.

John Crumlish, Chief Executive GIAF said, “Despite the many challenges of the last year for everyone, I feel that we at Galway International Arts Festival are very lucky in that we will get to present a festival that we are very excited about.

“It’s indoors and outdoors, it’s city and county, it’s bearla agus gaeilge, and it’s in person and online. We are really looking forward to it and we very much hope that audiences will enjoy it.”

This year’s festival includes ten premieres and special commissions, such as Medicine, a new play from Enda Walsh, a new production of Happy Days performed in the Irish language in the stunning landscape of Inis Oírr and the stately home of the Abbey Theatre, and Seagull [after Chekhov], a VR experience from Brú Theatre and Thomas Kilroy.

Sruth na Teanga will explore the epic history and story of the Irish Language in a truly unique performance that combines live performance, puppetry, animation and an original score.

Embark on an adventure in this immersive theatre show, through worlds where the legendary Fianna, Ireland’s Golden Age, and the Great Famine all come to life.

The Mirror Pavilion will also be returning for the second half of the mesmerising creation of John Gerard, originally commissioned by Galway 2020 Capital of Culture.

Mirror Pavilion, Corn Work was experienced by over 120,000 people when it sat in the Claddagh last Autumn. Now, the second act, Mirror Pavilion, Leaf Work will open the Galway Arts Festival from Derrigimlagh Bog in Connemara on August 28.

The First Thought Talks series is returning with guests including Misha Glenny; Bonnie Greer; Noelle Browne; Sinéad Burke, Fintan O Toole, Peter Lunn and Dr. Teresa Lambe among others.

The 2021 Vinyl Hours series will see guests Philip King, Sinéad Burke, Niamh Regan and Brian Kerr, reveal their most treasured songs in special in-conversation events.

Six artists have also received bursaries from the Galway International Arts Festival for work across both live and digital platforms under the newly created Elevate programme, with works to be presented over this year and next.

Artistic Director Paul Fahy said, “We are thrilled at the prospect of live audiences returning to our theatres, galleries and other venues to experience great work in person from all our wonderful artists in addition to those who will join us remotely.”

“It is such an honour to work with so many brilliant creative artists and colleagues to deliver this programme and we are so grateful to them for their commitment, passion and brilliance.”

The full programme of the 2021 arts festival can be downloaded here.