The Galway International Arts Festival
Situated on the west coast of Ireland on the Wild Atlantic Way, Galway has long been considered a centre of cultural excellence. Galway is a vibrant university city with its city centre, a labyrinth of winding medieval streets, squares and waterways. With a population of 75,000 Galway sits on the edge of the River Corrib surrounded by Galway Bay facing the vast expanse of the Atlantic Ocean.
Galway International Arts Festival is a unique combination of performance, music, visual art and discussion. It is one of Ireland's most vibrant and exciting Festivals offering a wide range of experiences from world-class theatre to impromptu musical performances on Galway's winding streets.
Based along the Wild Atlantic Way on the edge of the ocean, Galway is a vibrant, thriving cosmopolitan city full of energy and zeal where magic happens, not only on stages and galleries but also on street corners in its medieval city centre.
Strolling along the cobbled streets, every turn offers the possibility for new adventure; surreal giant puppets snaking through the streets, enchanting music, enthralling musicans and awe-inspiring street theatre.
Galway International Arts Festival is Ireland's largest international arts festival. Founded in 1978 it has grown into an event with a significant reputation where each year sees attendances in excess of 162,000, at 100's of performances, talks and exhibitions in 27 venues over 14 days. The Festival showcases a wide variety of international artists alongside the best of Irish talent and includes music (popular, contemporary, jazz, world, classical and traditional), theatre (indoor and outdoor), visual arts, dance, talks, discussions, family events and comedy in its programme.
Visiting international theatre and dance companies have included John Mahoney and Northlight Theatre, The Royal National Theatre, Propeller, The Royal Court, Steppenwolf, Michael Clark Dance Company, Hofesh Shechter Dance Company, The Abbey Theatre, Druid Theatre Company and the Bristol Old Vic.
The Festival also present traditional music concerts in large-scale and intimate settings, and large scale street spectacle from Royal de Luxe to the annual Macnas Festival Parade.
"The biggest, most exciting, most imaginative explosion of arts activity this country has". The Irish Times