International mix for Belfast Festival

International mix for Belfast Festival

The first acts for the 2014 Ulster Bank Belfast Festival at Queen's have been announced and include a number of top international acts that will perform for the first time in Northern Ireland.

Taking place over 17 days from 16 October - 1 November, the festival will see an eclectic programme of theatre, music, dance, film, literature and talks in venues all over Belfast.The prestigious Schaubühne Berlin, one of Europe's leading theatre companies, will make its Northern Ireland debut in a new production of Henrik Ibsen's An Enemy of the People by critically acclaimed director, Thomas Ostermeier.In another Irish premiere, the world's most celebrated flamenco dancer, Israel Galván, will display his talents in La Edad De Oro (The Golden Age), while the festival has also commissioned Scotland's Claire Cunningham as the 2014 Festival Artist in Residence with a new performance work, Guide Gods.The piece, which is also part of the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme, explores the perspectives of the major religions and faiths towards disability.Speaking after Tuesday's programme announcements Festival Director, Richard Wakely said the event is one of only a handful of European arts festivals that can deliver such "diversity" and applauded its ability to provide audiences with a "passport to the arts"."Working in collaboration with our partners throughout the entire city, the Festival connects audiences, artists and communities," he added."It also offers new ways to experience, engage and participate in the arts as well as attract international attention and profile to the wealth of creative talent in Northern Ireland.The Belfast Festival is expected to attract audiences of over 45,000 and generate around £2m to the local economy.Further acts are expected to be added to this year's programme over the coming months.

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