Féile 2021 gets under way this weekend in Derry

Féile 2021, the north west’s biggest arts festival, kicks off tomorrow, Saturday August 7 with nine days of events across Derry city centre, the Bogside, Bishop Street, Brandywell, Creggan and Fountain neighbourhoods.

Thursday, 5th August 2021, 6:05 pm

The festival will include online programmes, outdoor shows and exhibitions, as well as reduced capacity, indoor performances and screenings, with music, comedy, sport, cinema, discussions and events for all ages.

Highlights over this weekend include the premiere of the cinematic version of Guy King’s acclaimed documentary, Different League: The Derry City Story at a Drive In Movie at The Brandywell Stadium on Sunday night.

Earlier on Sunday, Thunder Action Sports Stunt Show at St Mary’s Youth Club in Creggan at 1pm and 2pm will be a jaw dropping experience featuring some of the best European action sports talent.

From Monday to Friday next week, Ice Cream Carnival will bring the circus to the streets, squares and parks of the neighbourhoods, while this Sunday Thunder Action Skills will be displaying their talents in Creggan.

Meanwhile at The Gasyard Park on Sunday afternoon, the Community Connections Fun Day will have loads of fun activities for all the family.

From Monday to Friday next week, Ice Cream Carnival will see Féile join forces with In Your Space Circus, Triax NMT and Surestart Edenballymore to bring the circus to the streets, squares and parks of the neighbourhoods.

A series of outdoor exhibitions will open at Pilots Row on Rossville Street. ‘Equal Spaces’, curated by Oliver Matthew Grant, celebrates the LGBTQIA+ community of the city while ‘Picture this… A Camerawork Photographic retrospective’ will feature a selection of images from the vast Camerawork Darkrooms Derry archive.

Discussions at Pilots Row will feature former Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams while RTE Europe correspondent Tony Connelly in conversation with Paul McFadden.

Féile TV returns this year via Facebook, Twitter and YouTube channels and will host some of the festival’s discussions and specially produced films, events and performances.

Online highlights this weekend include the premiere on Sunday night of a new short film ‘Lion For A Day’ based on Malcolm McCausland’s book on the life of Nailors Row resident and Olympic medallist Anton Hegarty.

Highlights later next week include the Colm Quigley Jog in the Bog, A Day For Ryan McBride and a return of live music with Colm Mac Con Iomaire, David Kitt and Junior Brother performing at St Columb’s Cathedral and St Augustine’s Church.

Some of the biggest names in Irish comedy will appear at the festival including Shane Todd, Micky Bartlett and Diona Doherty.

Discussion events will feature Jeremy Corbyn, Susan McKay and Professor Rory O’Connor. Film screenings at The Nerve Centre will include The 8th, Untold Secrets and Dark Waters which will be followed by a Q&A with Rob Bilott, the lawyer whose story the film is based on.

A Féile spokesperson said: “Féile 2021 would not be possible without the support of our funders at The Executive Office (Urban Villages & Communities In Transition), Derry City & Strabane District Council, Community Foundation NI, Department of Foreign Affairs and the collaboration of our many partners, groups, initiatives, volunteers and residents from throughout the Bogside, Brandywell, Creggan, Bishop Street and Fountain areas who have come together to shape and manage this programme of events.

“Due to current Covid restrictions and the limited capacity of venues, it will be necessary to pre-register for many events including free indoor events.”

All advance tickets are available at www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/gasyard-wall-feile-17617695603.