The streets of Dublin were filled with an air of excitement and anticipation on Thursday, April 13th 2023, as the 20th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival was launched at the Irish Georgian Society. This event marked a significant milestone for the festival, having seen 20 years of growth in size and reputation.
The Irish Georgian Society, a historical and architectural preservation society, provided a stunning backdrop for the launch event, reflecting both the rich cultural heritage of Ireland and the forward-thinking ethos of the festival and the vibrant creative community who have supported it throughout the years, many in attendance for the launch.
Speakers at the event included Seamus Dooley, General Secretary of the NUJ and Brian Merriman, Founder and Executive Director of the International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival.
As highlighted by Brian the festival stands as a beacon of hope for LGBTQ+ both at home and around the world, now more than ever:
“Populists pick on minorities, they de-humanise democratic politics, they organise to dominate and misinform the debate…we LGBT+ people are on the list of their targets. Our Festival stands with the courage to continue to produce all our stories and to shine our stage lights brightly on them. We are as needed today as it was 20 years ago”.
The significance of the festival as it crosses another major milestone amidst an ever-changing Dublin landscape was also called out by Seamus Dooley:
“Looking back on the annual programmes I was struck by the fact that the festival has outlasted some of its wonderful venues, including Andrew’s Lane Theatre, the enchanting Cobalt Café, and Dragon. So much has changed in 20 years, in our city, in the arts and entertainment scene, in the lived lives of the LGBTQ+ community. Let us not be blind to the challenges caused by exclusion, poverty, alienation and discrimination, often from within our own community.
In the current global climate, we cannot take for granted the rights we have secured for ourselves or the rights of those around us. The power of the theatre is to challenge, to stimulate, to educate and to help us celebrate.
Long may the Dublin International Gay Theatre Festival continue to entertain, to provoke and at times, like its founder, occasionally infuriate. It is a vital part of our rainbow community and is deserving of support.”
This year’s festival offers a total of 23 productions from 9 countries (Ireland, UK, USA, Australia, Israel, Italy, Canada, Serbia, Spain), and shows as Gaeilge, in Hebrew and in Serbian with English translations will premiere in our diverse programme from May 1-14th
We are also extending our festival footprint to include new venues in Dublin 8 and bring more shows across the city with 5 venues (Teachers Club, The Ireland Institute, Outhouse Theatre, DV8, All My Friends). Each night we have two shows in each venue. For a great night out why not see both shows for just €25 with our special offer venue ticket (more details can be found here)
To support the festival for 2023, book your tickets now.