International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival 2016 to feature artists from Iran and Russia
The programme for the world's largest gay theatre festival has been launched by Minister of State for New Communities, Culture & Equality, Aodhán Ó Ríordáin.
The International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival celebrates 13 years next month as it runs May 2 to 15.
Over its run the festival boasts 10 performances each night presented by theatre companies from Ireland, the UK, Canada, Iran, Russia, Germany, The Netherlands, Spain and Greece.
THe line-up includes everything from a wordless contemporary interpretation of the mythical story of Apollo and Hyacinth, to a satire of last year's Marriage Equality Referendum.
In this centenary year, the festival will feature several 1916-themed productions including Eirebrushed, written and directed by Festival Director Brian Merriman, in which the hidden lesbian and gay heroes of 1916 return today to discuss their place in modern Ireland.
There is also a collection of Irish historical shorts and a free academic seminar detailing the forgotten role LGBT people and women played in 1916.
Also featured this year is the story of Alan Turing whose computer cracked the Nazi codes in World War II, and Ireland from the times of Oscar Wilde to the modern heroes that passed the referendum for equal marriage.
Helen of Troy, the Greek banking crisis and even “the devil” Julie Andrews, make an appearance in a programme that welcomes, for the first time, artists from regimes who endanger their lives as LGBT people in Russia and Iran.
Speaking ahead of the launch, Brian Merriman said, “2016 not only allows us commemorate the contribution of gay people to the freedom of Ireland as a republic, but the many people who led the way to a more equal world for LGBT people.
"This is our thirteenth year staging new and diverse theatre, welcoming artists and audiences regardless of their sexual identity. Everyone is welcome in this unique festival of theatr."
Brian founded the event in 2004 on the 150th anniversary of the birth of Oscar Wilde, with the intention of creating new opportunities for visibility and affirmation of emerging LGBT artists and theatrical works.
Aodhán Ó Ríordáin added, “I am delighted to be here at today's launch. The festival is crucial to providing a space for LGBT voices in the arts.
"This of course is a very special year for our country and as we reflect on the last 100 years and all of the positive things that we have achieved. We need only cast our eyes back to last May, to when we became the first country in the world to vote Yes to marriage equality, to see how far we have come as a nation.”
Secure online booking is now open on www.gaytheatre.ie
Tickets are priced at €15 per show (€13 Concession/€10 matinee). Nightly Venue tickets; two plays in the same venue (7.30pm/9.00pm), available at €25.
Matinees are on Bank Holiday Monday (May 2nd) and each Saturday (May 7th/14th).
Box office opens April 25th from 12 noon to 3pm daily in Flanagan’s Restaurant, 61 Upper O’Connell Street, Dublin 1. +353892029673