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16th Annual Belfast Poetry Festival Announces Open Call

Seeking Poets, Performers, Artists, and More for Collaborative Works


The Belfast Poetry Festival, now in its 16th year, seeks teams of poets, performers, and artists for its annual juried presentation of original collaborative works featuring poetry combined with art in other media. The festival will be held Friday and Saturday, October 16 and 17, 2020 in downtown Belfast, Maine.

Saturday night’s event is a major focus of the Festival and will feature the celebratory showcase of poetry combined with visual arts (painting, film, etc.), performance arts (music, dance, etc.), and artistic collaborations never before imagined or known. Recent years have brought us large-scale puppetry, choral music, video performance art from natural and urban settings, and dance – how else can collaboration be explored? How far can the boundaries of genre be pushed?

The work will be presented live in a multimedia hall with a performance stage, a sound system, and a large-scale projection screen for artwork.

Each collaborative team will have 8 minutes for presentation during the show. Collaborations by teams of more than two people are welcome and encouraged.

The Belfast Poetry Festival is open to content of any kind and encourages the widest possible range of subject matter, tone, media, and style. We prioritize teams in which one or more members have a connection to Maine. We are committed to an inclusive roster of participants, and strongly encourage proposals from underrepresented voices.



To be considered for this year’s collaborative showcase, please address submissions to belfastpoetryfestival@gmail.com by April 1st. Please embed poems in the email message text and send images and/or clips as attachments. Include “2020 Submission” in the title of your email, and send:

-2-5 poems
-2-5 images of the collaborating artist’s work or audio or video material
-Short bios for each team member (75 words or less)
-Links to team members’ websites
-a brief written concept of your proposed poetry and arts collaboration

Submissions will be reviewed by the Festival Committee. We suggest you view the festival’s website to see past collaborations. Selected participants will be notified in May.

The festival follows a three-year rotation policy and discourages applications involving participants in the previous two festival years.