Galway International Arts Festival (GIAF) takes place over 2 weeks every July in Galway. This year marks the 40th festival and it runs from July 17th until July 30th 2017.
The festival showcases a range of arts including music, theatre productions and premieres, street performances, visual art and exhibitions. Each year around 200 events take place across Galway over the 14 days in over 26 venues. Over the 2 weeks over 200,000 people attend the festival.
This year’s highlights in the Absolut Big Top include The Coronas, Passenger, Gavin James,Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys,Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Jenny Greene & the RTE Concert Orchestra. Each year the Big Top is the main attraction for the festival goers with previous acts including Joni Mitchell, Bon Iver, Mick Flannery, Elvis Costello, Bell X1 and Imelda May. The music includes genres of soul, folk, rock, gospel and techno which will be suitable to everyone’s taste.
Street performances are included in the programme offering an extraordinary experience to the locals and tourists. This year’s performances include Chariot of the Sea by French masters of street spectacle Transe Express. Previous years performances have included Red Ball, Dragonus and The Giant Divas.
Galway International Arts festival theatre productions have been nominated and received National and International Theatre Awards.in 2011 in New York, Mister man a production by Enda Walsh won an award for a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance for Cillian Murphy.
In 2014 in Edinburgh, a production Riverrun by James Joyce, and adapted by Olwen Fouéré won 2 awards including the Stage Award for Acting Excellence for Olwen Fouéré and Herald Arcangel Award for Olwen Fouéré. Other theatre productions from Galway International Arts Festival have been nominated for awards including Arlington by Enda Walsh for Best Designer: Set by Jamie Vartan and Best Sound Design by Helen Atkinson and Teho Teardo in The Irish Times Irish Theatre Nominations & Awards in 2016.
The festival has helped and played a role in placing Galway as recognisable on the map for music, art, culture and a destination to visit. It is the perfect time to visit Galway as the city comes alive and there is so much to see, do, hear and enjoy.
Where to stay
Maldron Hotel Sandy Road is a short 10-minute walk away from Galway City Centre. If you’re looking for somewhere to base your stay for Galway International Arts Festival, Maldron Hotel Sandy Road is the perfect place to base your stay.