A guide to the most interesting events and festivals coming up around Dublin, and on campus.


Dublin Gay Theatre Festival:

From the 1st to the 14th of May, Dublin will host its hugely successful International Gay Theatre Festival. Now in its 14th year, the festival will reach a milestone in producing its 4,000th performance over the two weeks which open on the May Bank Holiday. The festival is proving that it is one of the biggest, most influential gay festivals in the world, and this year is no different. The festival is boasting a packed line up, with guests and performers from the most diverse backgrounds, the festival will focus on contemporary stories of LGBT life. The festival was inundated with over 100 submissions from all over the world, to which they whittled down to 9 performances a night from companies from the USA, UK, Germany, Mexico, Canada and Scotland. The festival will feature high school students from New York, Leaving Cert students, gay escorts, lesbian artist models, a play about a man who has a wife and boyfriend, and many more. Productions will take place in different venues across the city. New York city councillor, Daniel Dromm, has endorsed the festival for the positive impact the festival has had on people of Irish descent. Founder Brian Merriman says ‘the theatre has historically been used to speak out about injustice, to challenge convention and to push boundaries. Theatre like all art, has the power to change the world but to do that, we must be able to speak out about our shared ideas, dreams, hopes, fears and experiences. Our festival provides a safe space to those who may not have the opportunity to do so, and we appreciate the fact that Dublin has opened its heart to such artistic expression’. Tickets available from €10-€25.

Vivaldi and Handel:

On Sunday 23rd April, Sestina Early Music ensemble will take to Christ Church Cathedral to play Vivaldi’s ‘four seasons’ and Handel’s ‘Dixit Dominus’. Sestina is a Northern Irish based music ensemble made up of professional musicians who are experts in their field, and new, young talented musicians. Tickets for this event are available for €15 for students and €20 for adults.

Maeve Binchy Travel Award

The Maeve Binchy Travel award was established to commemorate deceased celebrated Irish writer and past UCD pupil. The award, sponsored by the Binchy/Snell family, is worth €4,000 and will go towards travel to enhance a student’s creative writing. Applications are open to any UCD student studying in the college of Arts and Celtic Studies. The UCD school of English, Drama and Film have announced that the successful applicant will be announced by 28th May. The successful applicant will be asked to produce a report of how their travel has influenced their creative writing after travel has taken place. This is a wonderful opportunity for any student with a love of writing and travel, and is the perfect acknowledgment for the superb writer that was Maeve Binchy.

Relay for Life UCD:

UCD’s Relay for Life returns on 12th April in Delvin Park. Relay for Life is a 24-hour long event. Teams of family and friends must commit to having one team member on the rack at all times. Along with this there will be a festival and entertainment. All money raised goes towards cancer research and the Irish Cancer Society. To get involved register on the Irish cancer society website at www.cancer.ie

The Happy Film:

The Happy Film is a feature length documentary exploring happiness. Graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister will undergo experiments to see if he has power over his own happiness. The three experiments he partakes in are under meditation, drugs and therapy, all in an effort to see if he can train himself to be a happier person. This film was originally released in 2016, and has proven to be hugely insightful and popular. A screening will take place at the Sugar Club on 12th April. Tickets €12.

Have I no Mouth:

‘Have I no Mouth’ is a theatre production by Brokentalkers in association with the Project Arts Centre. This play features Brokentalkers Ann and Feidlim Cannon, joined by their Pyschotherapist Erich Keller, to discuss a family tragedy. What is interesting about this piece is that it is all truth. A real mother and son are discussing their bereavement on stage, in an ultimate effort to find out how to heal themselves. This is an unconventional type of production, and very personal to the audience, nevertheless it has proven to be intriguing and very popular in the likes of Edinborough, Germany, Melbourne, New York and Vancouver. Tickets €14-€16, and it is on Wednesday 19th April in the Pavilion Theatre.

IADT IMMA ‘Symbiosis’:

IADT first year students have continued their residency in the IMMA for its tenth year. Opened on the 31st of March, the exhibition was named ‘Symbiosis’, exploring the concept that the artist is the origin of the work. It questions if the work is the origin of the artist. Neither is without the other. The exhibition looked to give an intimate insight into the creation and honing of contemporary art. It also explores inserting things of a different nature into the likes of of museums of cemeteries. For art fans, the IADT residency is an opportunity to enjoy upcoming talent, who push the boundaries of art to develop something fascinating, and always allow us to have different perceptions of art.

UCD Dance-a-Thon

On the 29th of April the Erasmus Student Network is holding a fundraising dance marathon. UCD Dance-a-Thon is a 12 hour dance marathon event to bring the community together in order to better the lives of children suffering from long-term and/or terminal illness. The event starts at 10am and is in the UCD Astra Hall. 


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Holly Lloyd Arts & Events Editor