This year’s Writers on Writers Festival at the Linen Hall Library in Belfast focuses on the ‘yin’ of NI literature. The Festival, now in its third year, will run from Monday, May 9, to Friday, May 13. Northern Ireland women writers, past and present, will be honoured, with the week dedicated to Christina Reid (1942 – 2015), pictured above, the late playwright and a former Governor of the Linen Hall.
Names including Lucy Caldwell, Anne Devlin, Jo Egan and Finn Kennedy are all part of the stellar line up. There will be lectures, discussion, workshops, and performances by Pintsized Productions, Macha Productions and Handful Productions.
The Festival schedule is as follows in chronological order:
Monday 9 May:
6.00pm – Festival Launch with Pintsized Productions/ performance/ free
Local drama troupe Pintsized will perform dramatic readings from two of the late Christina Reid’s plays The Belle of Belfast City and Tea in a China Cup.
Tuesday 10 May:
1.00pm The Theatre and Performing Arts Archive/ lecture/ free
Former curator of the Linen Hall’s Theatre Archive, Ophelia Byrne, takes the audience through items exploring the history of this phenomenal collection.
2.00pm – 4.00pm Workshop with Jo Egan/ £5
Playwright and theatre-maker Jo Egan (Sweeties, Crimea Square) focuses on four women playwrights from NI (1916 – 2016) giving an overview of their life, work and the cultural context in which it was created.
6.00pm – 7.30pm Performance and discussion on women playwrights in NI/ £5
Spotlight is on NI women writers with Handful Productions theatre company and ‘The Literary Ladies’, a new writing collective with Felicity McCall, Lynne Edgar, Julieann Campbell and Freya McClements.
Wednesday 11 May:
10.00am – 12.00pm Empowering People to Write/ £5
Writing workshop with NI writers and poets Paula Matthews and Anne McMaster.
1.00pm Christina Reid – The Late Playwright/ Discussion/ free
Anne Devlin, short story writer, playwright and screenwriter, discusses her friend and fellow playwright, the late Christina Reid.
Thursday 12 May:
6.00pm – In Conversation with Lucy Caldwell/ £5
Multi-award winning NI novelist and playwright Lucy Caldwell, who recently launched her debut collection Multitudes, is in conversation with media personality Marie-Louise Muir.
Friday 13 May:
1.00pm – Discussion about Olga Fielden/ free
Belfast City Council’s Dr Naomi Doak discusses the contribution that Ulster Protestant author Olga Fielden made to the pool of NI literature with her book Island Story (1933), which tells the life of Jane McCormick on the imaginary island of Rathnaheena.
6.00pm – Exploring New Works from Women Writers/ readings/ £5
A fun evening with various extracts from new works read by theatre company Macha Productions. With playwrights Julie McCann and Tara Lynne O’Neill.
For more information about these events and the Linen Hall Library in general, please visit our website at www.linenhall.com.