Kilkenny Arts Festival - Not To Be Missed

THIS year’s Kilkenny Arts Festival will run from August 10th to 19th.

THIS year’s Kilkenny Arts Festival will run from August 10th to 19th.

The opening weekend of the festival features an exciting range of cultural experiences for everyone to enjoy including: theatre, music, visual art, literature, craft, children’s and street theatre. Indeed, this year’s festival promises ten exhilarating days of illuminating, interactive and innovative presentations of the very best in cultural enlightenment. For further information on how to book tickets go to or call into our box office staff at 16 John Street, Kilkenny.

The festival delivers a wonderful line-up of cultural experiences, key highlights include: Shakespeare’s As You Like It, presented by The Globe Theatre.

The world-renowned theatre company Shakespeare’s Globe are coming to Ireland, performing one of Shakespeare’s best-loved comedies.

This gloriously funny romance promises to be a festival highlight; Friday 10th – Sunday 19th in the Castle Yard, Kilkenny Design Centre.

A limited number of tickets are available for this production, for further information regarding availability contact our box office on 16 John Street or by calling 056 775 2175.

Another must see from this year’s Theatre Strand is Cois Céim’s acclaimed Swimming With My Mother.

A mother and son duo navigate the ebb and flow of their shared history in this intimate and heart-warming dance duet performed by acclaimed Irish choreographer David Bolger and his 78-year-old mother Madge - Saturday, August 11th and Sunday, August 12th in The Watergate Theatre.

Music lovers can look forward to an incredible line-up of world renowned musicians this August when they descend on the Marble City.

Collaborative project DÁN features a stellar line-up of musicians including the twin powerhouses of Guidewires and KAN.

In the sublime surroundings of St Canice’s on Sunday, August 19th at 8pm this will be a night of extraordinary music-making that will live long in the memory – a festival gem that is not to be missed.

Last year Adam Wiltzie, formerly of Sparklehorse teamed up with Berlin-based composer and pianist Dustin O’Halloran to form A Winged Victory for the Sullen and the result is a “gem” (Mojo) of an album that takes ambient soundscapes in new and lush directions full of soaring strings, rich arrangements and touching motifs. They’ll be bringing their unique sound to the Set Theatre on Saturday, August 18th at 8.30pm.

There’s a very special treat in store for fans of Classical music; pianist Polina Leschenko returns to Kilkenny with a quartet of outstanding musicians, including violinist Ilya Gringolts, to present an enchanting programme of pieces by Chopin, Haydn, Fauré and Ravel. St Canice’s will come alive with Le Concert Spirituel The Golden Age of French Sacred Music from France directed by Hervé Niquet. Join us as ten outstanding female soloists testify to the exceptional dramatic sense of the French ‘Grand Siècle’. Designed to recreate the atmosphere of a seventeenth-century mass, and featuring the work of Jean-Baptiste Lully Marc-Antoine Charpentier and Louis le Prince.

Twenty years on from Sarajevo, the award-winning journalist and historian Misha Glenny comes to Kilkenny for the The Hubert Butler Lecture to talk about the siege and the conflict that spawned it.

Other exciting performances over the festival are readings from Paul Durcan, discussions on Home Rule and The War of Independence in Kilkenny and readings from Mike Scott, Claire Kilroy, John Banville, Gallery Press Poets, Elliott Perlman and the premiere of Anthony Cronin’s RMS Titanic set to music by Donal Lunny.

If you’ve never been to an opera, then Cork Opera House’s production of Henry Purcell’s masterpiece Dido & Aeneas is the perfect place to start.

Featuring home-grown stars Cara O’Sullivan and Mary Hegarty Dido & Aeneas tells the tragic story of Queen Dido and her Trojan lover Aeneas and turns it into a rollicking, sexy, steampunk extravaganza. Don’t miss one of the highlights of the festival!

For the Family, there’s a whole host of events to enjoy over the 10 days; The Ideas Shop, a very special interactive event presented by writers Oisin McGann and Sarah Webb.

Ideal for young readers and young aspiring writers, the clever duo will share all their writing secrets and answer all your questions about ideas and inspiration.

Musical powerhouse Belfast-born Brian Irvine brings his imagination song machine to Barnstorm Theatre on August.

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