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Belfast International Arts Festival

Date: 12 Oct - 1 Nov

Category: Festivals

Belfast International Arts Festival

This will be the 58th edition of Northern Ireland’s largest contemporary arts festival with a programme of inspirational online events that seeks to respond creatively to the current pandemic.

The 2020 edition explores contemporary matters of interest such as gender equality, multi-culturalism, representation, the climate crisis, and democracy.

A cornerstone of Northern Ireland’s cultural calendar, this year’s programme features:

  • an extended Talks and Ideas programme
  • theatre, dance and music performances reimagined for a digital audience
  • developmental initiatives for artists from across the island
  • international film and documentary work.

Among the international work is DOING IT (pictured), by Pedro Penim (Portugal), theatre maker, performer and one of the artistic directors of Teatro Praga collective. DOING IT is a personal piece about his secret obsession with remote islands across the world. In a livestreamed lecture performance, audiences will travel virtually to his ‘island collection’ learning a little more about these places and what drives this secret passion and may reflect on their own private obsessions.

Local company Big Telly, who have become a world leader in live digital theatre, will open this year’s edition with their premiere of a new online and interactive theatrical production of Macbeth - a fully interactive, intriguing piece of theatre that engages audiences in the action, as well as the moral and ethical nuances of this classic Shakespeare tragedy.

The full programme will be launched in early September.

For more information go to

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