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Make a connection with EastSide Arts Festival this summer

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Date: 30 Jun 2021

Category: Culture and arts

Lord Mayor launches 2021 EastSide Arts Festival

Belfast Lord Mayor Councillor Kate Nicholl is encouraging everyone to connect with EastSide Arts Festival this summer, from 5-15 August.

Featuring 100+ artists across more than 80 events taking place both in-person and online, audiences can enjoy the festival at home, outdoors in person, or at a range of east Belfast locations.

Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Kate Nicholl, said: "We're delighted to support the EastSide Arts Festival, one of our Cultural Multi-Annual Grant recipients. Belfast is proud of its thriving festival scene and these events play a vital role in our 10 year cultural strategy, A City Imagining.

"I'm impressed at how this year's festival is combining online activity with some in-person events as restrictions start to ease following a challenging period for our local arts sector. The EastSide Arts Festival promises to bring an incredible range of activities to celebrate and showcase local talent and I'd like to take this opportunity to wish the organisers and participating artists the best of luck."

Here's a snapshot of some of the many events taking place: 

  • Anthony Toner album launch. ‘Six Inches of Water’ commissioned by EastSide Partnership includes ten songs inspired by east Belfast.
  • Mixed Bill Comedy Night: Presenting comedy talent from across Northern Ireland for an evening of laughs at Vault Artist Studios.  
  • #GreenwayCelebrations - get down to Victoria Park, part of the Connswater Community Greenway, for a host of activities including sports, outdoor adventure, arts and crafts, street performances, food stalls, music, environmental activities and more.
  • West Ocean String Quartet playing live in the atmospheric surroundings of St Patrick’s Church, launching their new album, ‘Atlantic Edge’.
  • ‘Billy Boy’ at the Strand Arts Centre. Written by Rosemary Jenkinson, directed by Matt Farris and inspired by the real-life stories of young bonfire builders in east Belfast. 
  • Mary Coughlan sings Billie Holiday at the Stormont Hotel.
  • Literary events live streamed from Accidental Theatre featuring Jan Carson, Colin Hassard, Abby Oliviera, Andrea Montgomery, Susan McKay, Andrew Cunning, Sarah Moss, Louise Nealon and writers from Hedgehog Press.
  • Live at CS Lewis Square: four nights of live outdoor music including Gareth Dunlop and friends; Celtic Soul celebrating the 50th anniversary of 'Moondance' by Van Morrison (rescheduled from last year); Electronica with The Night Institute DJs and a tribute to Gary Moore on the 10th anniversary of his death.
  • 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.

Supported by Principal Funder, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, funders Belfast City Council and Belfast Harbour, sponsors Translink, Connswater Shopping Centre and Retail Park, Hewitt & Gilpin and Future Screens NI, the festival is packed full of unique, exciting, events that will allow festival goers to connect with friends and family, performers and facilitators in a safe and accessible way.

EastSide Arts Festival is presented by EastSide Arts, an EastSide Partnership initiative. The Partnership is celebrating 25 years of delivering regeneration projects across east Belfast this year.

For the full festival programme and ticket information

visit Follow the festival on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram #ESAFest21.

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