By Caitlin Hornik
Summer is prime time for both outdoor festivals and visiting Europe! Here are a few festivals to consider adding to your upcoming itinerary - Or a few reasons to start planning your trip!
Galway Arts Festival
One of the top five festivals in Ireland during the summer months, the Galway Arts Festival is not to be missed. The festival has evolved since its inception in 1978, and now spans two weeks to include theater, dance, comedy, visual arts, discussion, and so much more. In 2018, it offered performances and exhibits from over 600 artists and saw over 250,000 attendees! In 2019, the 42nd edition of the festival is slated to include performances from Burt Bacharach, Two Door Cinema Club, The Academic, and many more. The Galway Arts Festival will run from July 15-28, 2019.
Learn more about the Galway Arts Festival
Electric Picnic Music and Arts Festival
Electric Picnic began in 2004 as a one-day festival with 10,000 tickets available. Marketed as a boutique music festival that included comedy and theater, it was the first festival of its kind in Ireland. Since then, it has grown into a three-day festival selling as many as 55,000 tickets in 2016. Headliners have included Florence and the Machine, Ed Sheeran, Fatboy Slim, Lana Del Ray, and many more artists of different genres and backgrounds. The 2019 festival is running August 30- September 1st, 2019. It sold out in 15 minutes - a record - and months before the lineup was announced. Set in the idyllic location of Stadbally Hall in County Laois, the festival is easily reachable from Dublin, making it a great addition to your next trip!
Learn more about Electric Picnic
Kilkenny Arts Festival
Since 1974, the Kilkenny Arts Festival has gathered some of the world’s best artists, performers, musicians, and more for its 10-day festival. Churches, castles, courtyards and more are opened up for performances and collaborations. While the festival is open to different genres and styles, there has traditionally been an emphasis on classical music. As the festival has continued to develop, artist residencies have been established to allow for a central theme or performer. The lineup is announced each year in the late spring or early summer. Kilkenny Arts Festival is one of Ireland’s leading festivals and is also Ireland's oldest multidisciplinary arts festival. This year, the event is running from August 8-18th.
Learn more about the Kilkenny Arts Festival
Wexford Festival Opera
At the heart of southeastern Ireland's County Wexford is tiny Wexford town. Wexford has made a name for itself in the world due in large part to Wexford Festival Opera and the town’s National Opera House. The festival originated in 1951 and was billed as a Festival of Music and the Arts. It gained a reputation for breathing new life into old, forgotten, or neglected works, and for using young, exciting singers to do so. Now in its 68th year, the festival has won international acclaim, even being voted the Best Opera Festival in the World in 2017. This year, the 68th edition of the festival will run from October 22nd - November 3rd. Wexford Festival Opera joins forces with the Wexford Historical Society to offer free tours of Wexford town to out-of-town visitors during the festival. This is something you definitely won’t want to miss!
Learn more about Wexford Festival Opera