Eastside Arts festival 2020, Preview

Eastside Arts Festival, Preview, August 6th – 16th

By Conor O’Neill

Titled Moments of Joy, 2020’s Eastside Arts Festival promises an assortment of events, both online and a few approaching what we so casually called ‘normal’ before Covid-19 raised its nasty head.

Eastside Arts Festival Real cover pic

Whether it be theatre in a shopping centre, yes you did read that correctly, cabaret, live painting including a Q & A session in ArtisAnn gallery, historical walks, a musical celebration to mark Van The Man’s 75th birthday, aa Zoom poetry and art workshop, special showings in The Strand Cinema, green yoga with music – yeah, I’ve absolutely no idea either – The Vault’s artists’ market in C.S Lewis Square, book readings, music performances, or a cycling circus … put simply, there’s too much going on to name one-by-one, but rest assured there’s bound to be something to suit all ages, pockets and tastes.

For the full festival line-up and ticket info visit http://www.eastsidearts.net.

Festival director, Rachel Kennedy said: “This is a year like no other and like all our friends and partners we will be putting the health and safety of our audiences above everything else. For this reason, most of our festival events will be productions that you can enjoy online.

“There will be the usual assortment of events that celebrate the people, places and spaces of east Belfast for everyone to participate in, but this year we have adapted many of these so that audiences can choose to enjoy many of these from the safety at home or outdoors.

“With the theme ‘Moments of Joy’ the programme continues to reflect and celebrate the growing diversity and creativity that is making its presence felt in this part of the city.

“A huge thank you to the support of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland as well as our funders and sponsors who have helped us during these challenging times.

“We warmly invite you to enjoy this year’s unique and exciting programme and we thank you for supporting not only Eastside Arts, but the many artists we have had the pleasure of working with to make this happen.”

Eastside Arts Festival pic three

Arts Council of Northern Ireland director, Noirin McKinney added: “The Arts Council, as principal funder, is delighted to be able to support the Eastside Arts Festival as an important community based event.

“They have produced a great programme for 2020 in response to the circumstances imposed by Cobid-19; from online, live-streamed music from Eastside Electronics, to virtual tours of C.S Lewis or The Yardmen, to live events such as the much anticipated play by Kabosh, The King of East Belfast which will be a welcome return to live, socially distanced theatre.

“We wish Rachel and the Eastside Arts team continued success as they go about delivering this amazing mix of virtual, online outdoor and live events all the while contributing to the creative transformation of east Belfast.”

Once again, for the full festival programme visit http://www.eastsidearts.net

To follow the festival on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram #ESAFest20

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