The President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins, will open the Clifden Arts Festival this evening in the Clifden Community School.
The festival of music, dance, theatre, performance, artistic trails, and literature is now in its 35th year and will run from today through to Sunday September 30.
This year's event promises to inspire children and adults with a broad programme of events.
On Saturday and Sunday Fidget Feet will present “A Fairies Tail” in which the audience will follow the act through the woods of Connemara as Fidget Feet perform an amazing mixture of outdoor theatre and aerial acrobatic storytelling. Tickets for the events are €10 per adult, €5 per child or €25 for a family ticket.
The local schools will play host to a number of different events which will help to inspire, educate and encourage local students in appreciating the arts including workshops, a film festival, specialist talks and lectures over a broad range of topics, musical concerts and readings from established poets and writers.
On Monday (September 24 ) Strings and Things will stage a number of children's workshops. Members of the group will share their expertise, while poet-in-residence Tony Curtis provides poetry workshops. Monday will also see the school film festival kick off with an emphasis on the third level curriculum.
Students will be kept entertained by Sean O’Laoire and his puppet theatre, while Mike O’Sulllivan returns to the festival with his acclaimed Humourfit Theatre Company to present Helen’s Story onTuesday (September 25 ). The Headford Orchestra will provide the children with the musical extravaganza ‘Sail Away’ on Wednesday (September 26 ), and on Friday (September 28 ) The Fanzini Brothers visit the schools with Professor Plungers debut.
This dedicated schools' programme is unique to The Clifden Arts Festival, and director Brendan Flynn says the local schools and children "are at the heart of this festival".
"We endeavour to make the event both enjoyable and educational for the children. We want them to be as excited and inspired when they leave as they were when the festival began in Clifden Community School 35 years ago.”
Saturday (September 29 ) is a day of ‘Fun on the Street’ as the legendary Fanzini Brothers and The Drumshanbo Samba Band take to the streets of Clifden at Market square at 2pm, in addition to clowns, acrobats, jugglers, buskers, musicians and face painters.
To conclude the 10 day festival, LUXe and Fidget Feet, local schools and groups will present The Grand Parade - what is billed as a "journey into the world of the imagination- music, dance, fire, and magnificent costumes".
Tickets can be purchased online at www.clifdenartsweek.ie or in the Clifden Arts Festival Box Office (located inside Connemara Properties on Bridge Street ). To book call 091-442730 or email: [email protected].
A full programme of events for the 35th Clifden Community Arts Festival can be found online at www.clifdenartsweek.ie For further information visit us on Facebook/ClifdenArtsFestival or follow it on Twitter @clifdenartsweek.