DERRY City and Strabane District Council are inviting the public to wrap up in culture as venues and public spaces across the city and district prepare to open their doors for a programme of free entertainment for Culture Night 2019.
The celebrations are part of an island wide celebration of arts, heritage and culture on Friday, September 20, and are hosted by artists, organisations and venues from the local arts and cultural community.
The 2019 programme has a particular emphasis on community relations to compliment Good Relations Week and has been divided into Visual Arts, Music and Dance, Talks and Discussions, Tours and Trails, Heritage and Museums and Children and Family.
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor Michaela Boyle, launched the programme at the Garden Of Reflection this week where she encouraged the public to review the schedule and plan their own unique Culture Night experience.
“I am delighted and excited to launch the Derry Strabane Culture Night 2019 programme which is particularly comprehensive and wide ranging this year with a number of new events and venues added.
“Culture Night is a brilliant opportunity for the public to explore some of the hidden treasures around the Council area and I would encourage the public to access the programme which contains maps of Derry and Strabane allowing them to plot their own trail and visit the venues and offerings that interest them.
“I would like to thank everyone from the local arts and cultural community for giving up their time to allow us to offer a wide ranging programme for 2019.”
Among the highlights in this year’s programme is a Countdown to Brexit discussion event in the Guildhall with Northern Ireland’s three MEPs on the panel.
The wide ranging heritage section of the programme includes the official launch of four sound art pieces, collectively entitled The Stone Tapes, at the gates of Derry-Londonderry’s city walls.
The pieces are by four local artists from the Bishop Street Studios – Catherine Ellis, Janet Hoy, Stephen Lewis and Amanda Walker, and will be launched with a series of events at the city gates that inspired each artwork.
The Talks Tours and Trails section of the programme includes an Origins of the Walls History Trail, a Poetry Trail around different venues by the Bluebell Arts Project and a reading and virtual city tour of Oak and Stone by Dave Duggan.
Head of Culture at Derry City and Strabane District Council, Aeidin McCarter added:
“We have been working closely with our partners to offer the public an extensive and varied programme of activities, performances and visual arts to celebrate Culture Night 2019,” she said.
“The programme has something to suit every age and taste and is an opportunity to visit many of our historic buildings that are not always accessible to the public.
Families are specifically caterer for in the programme with highlights including Sayonara in the Tower Museum – a beautiful multimedia storytelling event of Japanese folklore featuring music and paper play.
In Strabane ‘Tales from Home’ in the Alley Theatre will feature a night of music by local songwriter Brian Hassan while Plumbridge will host a traditional irish music festival featuring musicians Zoe Conway, John McIntyre and John Sheahan.
Events are free and suitable for all ages unless otherwise stated and all events are drop in unless pre-booking is stated.
These are just a few of the many highlights taking place on the day, and you can find out more about the full programme at www.derrystrabane.com/culturenight
The full programme for Culture Night 2018 is available to view at www.derrystrabane.com/culturenight
The public can follow the action and share their own experiences on social media using the hashtag #CultureNightDS.