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Fourteenth Annual Belfast Poetry Festival Announces Open Call

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

The 14th Annual Belfast Poetry Festival seeks teams of poets, performers, and artists for its annual juried presentation of original collaborative works featuring poetry combined with visual and/or performance arts. The Festival will be held Friday and Saturday, October 12 and 13 in downtown Belfast.

As a major focus of the Festival, Saturday night’s event will feature the celebratory showcase of poetry combined with visual arts, poetry with performance arts, and poetry in combinations never before imagined or known. 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.

In addition, the festival is also seeking applications for a limited number of collaborations of poetry and visual art for physical display or installation in Belfast venues during the month of October without live performance or presentation.

The Belfast Poetry Festival draws a devoted assemblage of poets and artists from across the state and beyond.



This year, the Belfast Poetry Festival will have a two-step submission process. Interested parties should submit a letter of intent with the materials requested below. If the Festival takes an interest in your samples of work and suggested team of collaborators, it will request a more detailed and formal written concept of your proposed collaborative work later in April.

To be considered for this year’s collaborative showcase, please include “2018 Submission” in the title of your email, and send:


-5 poems

-5 images of the collaborating artist’s work or audio or video material

-Short  bios (75 words or less)

-Links to websites

-One or two sentences about themes you are excited to explore.

Submissions will be reviewed by the 7-person Festival Committee. We suggest you view the Festival’s website to see past collaborations.

Address submissions to belfastpoetryfestival@gmail.com by April 1, 2018. Please embed poems in the email message text and send images and/or clips as attachments. All submissions will be juried by the Festival Committee.


Selected participants will be notified in April with a request for a fuller written concept of proposed collaborative work.

The festival follows a two-year rotation policy and discourages applications involving participants in last year’s festival.

We welcome your submission to join a diverse and rich celebration of the power of poetry to move hearts and minds. For more information, and for reference to previous festival performances, see the festival website at www.BelfastPoetry.com, friend The Belfast Poetry Festival onFacebook, follow on Twitter, or email jacob@belfastpoetry.com.

Top: Kifah Abdullah performs at the 2017 Festival, video image by Ned Lightner
Above: Pretty Girls Sing Soprano perform at the 2017 Festival, image by Ellen Sander