Arlo Screenan (age 9), Noah Connolly (age 9), Lily Blighe (age 4), Aisling Blighe (age 7), Maisie Connolly (age 7) and Nelly the dog (all from Dublin 8) go green as they get set for the launch of St.
There is a front row seat for everyone this year at the National St Patrick's Festival.
Dúisigh Éire! Awaken Ireland! is the theme of this year’s festival, a clarion call to the Irish across the world to throw off the long, dark months and rise to embrace the brighter days ahead.
Dúisigh Éire! Awaken Ireland! promises to be a positive and uplifting celebration of our incredible people, our beautiful island, our community bonds, our young people, artists, creators and makers, and our diaspora across the world.
The Festival will connect our global family, to mark our national day, through remembrance and celebration, song and story, laughter and tears, exploring the unique ties that bind us as a people. The Festival Programme is now available HERE.
Many further collaborations will be announced shortly including #RTÉVirtualParade with St. Patrick’s Festival, an exciting visual arts project with Damn Fine Print and some very special spectacle moments sure to thrill and delight!
For this year’s online Festival, a rich and dynamic series of events are being safely created and recorded by hundreds of artists, musicians, performers, makers, creators, arts and live events workers and community organisations across Ireland.
These events will run on St. Patrick’s Festival TV (SPF TV), a dedicated online TV channel at www.stpatricksfestival.ie, which launches on March 12 and runs over six great virtual days and nights, and will be accessible globally.
Through St. Patrick’s Festival TV, the world is invited to take a front row seat at St. Patrick’s Festival 2021, connecting our family of 80 million through music, theatre, art, performance, poetry, storytelling, traditional arts, virtual tours, food, culture and much more. The full SPF TV schedule with days and times for each event will be announced in early March and viewers will be able to playback all the events on the SPF TV Player until March 21.
The Festival will tell the stories of our dynamic, modern, diverse culture, and uplift and celebrate our proud ancient traditions. With more than 100 events taking place across six great virtual days and nights, there is something for everyone at the Festival this year. SPF Óg offers a boisterous collection of events, performances, workshops and fun experiences for families and young people; Sounds is a packed programme of contemporary and traditional music from Ireland, recorded by our finest artists and musicians; Stories invites the world to explore Ireland through the lens of film, poetry, literature, performance and art; while Living Ireland is a reflection of Ireland now, how we live and love, work and play, make, create, remember and celebrate.
In a year when our arts, culture, live events and tourism communities have been amongst those hardest hit by the pandemic, St. Patrick’s Festival has channelled more than 85% of its programme funding directly back into these communities all across Ireland, enabling the creation of events and experiences to fill our hearts with joy, hope and positivity, a truly national festival.
Speaking of the 2021 St Patrick’s Festival, Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media Catherine Martin said: “I was pleased this week to announce funding to support the vibrant, exciting programme of events for this year’s St. Patrick’s Festival.
"This re-imagined programme, Dúisigh Éire! will allow us all come together virtually to celebrate our national festival safely, but also provide us with an opportunity to reflect on what has been a very difficult year.
"The engaging programme - for the first time ever - will also be broadcast live for almost a full week and includes something for everyone. I am particularly delighted that resources for the adapted festival are fueling arts, culture, live and tourism community activities - some of the worst impacted during these challenging times. Tabharfaidh sé seo deis iontach dúinn teacht le chéile go fíorúil mar phobal chun cultúr agus oidhreacht shaibhir na hÉireann a cheiliúradh.”
Anna McGowan, Interim Director of St Patrick’s Festival, said: “As we move from winter into spring, people across the country and our diaspora awaken with a new hope, a new shared vision of positivity for our future.
"Dúisigh Éire! Awaken Ireland! will capture this sense of hope and optimism, presented online this year through St Patrick’s Festival TV, with a huge range of events for every age and curiosity, celebrating our contemporary culture and those who have influenced us. We recognise a year of loss and isolation, and also one of community action, local and international heroes and the indomitable spirit of the Irish. We really can’t wait to share this wonderful programme of events today.”
Artists and performers set to take part in the diverse 2021 Festival Programme include comedians Foil, Arms & Hog and Michael Fry , legendary poet Pat Ingoldsby, treasured writers and broadcasters such as Marian Richardson, Brendan Balfe and Manchán Magan.
Fáilte Ireland CEO Paul Kelly commented: “While we can’t celebrate St Patrick’s Day in the same way this year, we hope to keep Ireland front of mind and St Patrick’s Festival 2021 will be a vibrant virtual showcase of the very best of Ireland’s culture, people and places. We look forward to welcoming international visitors to celebrate our national festival with us in 2022 once it is safe to travel again.”
St Patrick’s Festival is made possible through the continued support of the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Fáilte Ireland, Dublin City Council, and many generous partners and funders.