The 60th Belfast International Arts Festival Autumn Season, 2022, Preview

Celebrating its 60th year the Belfast International Arts Festival announces its autumn season programme. From October 5th – November 6th Belfast welcomes over 320 imaginative, inspiring and intriguing events across the city. Spanning artistic disciplines from music to theatre, dance, film, visual arts, discussions and city walks the Diamond Anniversary is sure to cater for every artistic taste.

There will, of course, be a litany of homegrown talent featured during this autumn’s season but 2022 will have a special focus on Canada, the Middle East and North Africa.

Canadian events include Viviek Shraya’s How to Fail as a Popstar, a reflection on the power of pop culture, dreams, disappointment and self-determination; the European premiere of The Queen and Me, an exuberant new opera involving comedy and drama from Teiya Kashara (they/them) exploring the ways race, gender and sexuality are policed in the opera industry; closing the festival, the critically acclaimed Kiinalik: These Sharp Tools brings together two extraordinary artists to examine their intertwined histories, colonial legacies and changing climate we all face.

A special focus on new contemporary works from the Middle East and North Africa is among projects supported by the British Council, BIAF’s principal internal partner and features Another Lover’s Discourse a newly commissioned work from Palestinian interdisciplinary artist, Riham Isaac plus new stage work from Egyptian choreographer, Shaymaa Shoukry and Moroccan live performance and visual artist, Youness Atbane, as well as a concert featuring recently arrived refugees from across the Middle East.

The BIAF will also host delegates of artists and programmers from the Middle east and India who will have the opportunity to see the work of local artists at first hand. In particular, there will be an exchange of delegations between BIAF and Ciaro’s D-CAF (Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival) with Belfast welcoming D-CAF’s director, Ahmed El Attar in October with an opportunity for local audiences to hear him speak about the current contemporary arts scene in Egypt and the Arab World.

Belfast International Arts Festival chief executive and artistic director Richard Wakely said: “60 years is a momentous occasion and we pause to reflect on the artistic talent and creative commissions that have seen the BIAF reach this significant milestone. The festival has evolved much over the past six decades and it continues to do so with this year’s programme demonstrating the unique ability of artists to respond to the changing world around us.”

Belfast’s Lord Mayor, Christina Black said: “Belfast City Council has been a longstanding supporter of Belfast International Arts Festival and we are delighted to support the festival’s 60th edition. The festival has earned a reputation as a progressive, contemporary, global arts event, with civic engagement at its heart it brings the community together. I am looking forward to the range of activities on offer during this special anniversary year.”

For a list of all events and booking details please follow the link

There’s bound to be at least a dozen events for you, friends and family!

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