Cristal Palace By Transe Express. Under The Disco Ball. Photographer Jef Berhim

Established in 1962, the city’s longest-running international arts festival, reimagined and reborn as Belfast International Arts Festival (BIAF) in 2015, is celebrating 60 years with a new extended season of contemporary arts and cultural events.

For six decades the festival has ensured that the residents of Belfast alongside its international visitors have access to the best of world class artists and events from home and abroad.

The 2022 celebrations got off to a spectacular start with a dazzling free outdoor event, Cristal Palace (23-24 April) by French company Transe Express, who transformed Titanic Paddocks, adjacent to Titanic Slipways on the Maritime Mile, into an open-air night-time ballroom complete with an airborne orchestra perched 30 meters atop a giant chandelier, aerial acrobats and sharp-witted characters.

A series of festival events in May includes Between Tiny Cities (6–7 May) at The MAC, an exhilarating hip hop b*boy battle between two dancers, one from Cambodia and one from Australia, and several Talks & Ideas events; the sold out Simon Armitage (4 May), and two intimate events in No Alibis with writers Ayanna Lloyd Banwo and Amanda Smyth (10 May), and Emilie Pine and Audrey Magee (12 May).

Further programme announcements to follow.

Save the dates for our core festival: 5 October – 6 November 2022.

Look back at the history -see Festival Archive

Cristal Palace by Transe Express. Photographer Fred Collier. A young child sits on top of father's shoulders and looks in amazement at gigantic chandelier suspended in the night sky
BIAF 60th Opening Event

Cristal Palace (booked up)

By Transe Express
Saturday 23 & Sunday 24 April
8.30pm | Gates open 6.30pm
Opening Event
Irish Premiere
Simon Armitage Web

Simon Armitage

Wednesday, 4 May 2022
7pm / Doors open 6.30pm
Talks & Ideas
Irish Craft Heroes Web

Irish Craft Heroes

Design & Crafts Council Ireland
Rescheduled to Summer 2022
Visual Arts
IN-visible ID-entities 4