15 Unique Events Taking Place At This Year’s 4 Corners Festival
Now in its 12th year, the 4 Corners Festival is set to deliver 15 interesting and unique events across all four corners of Belfast.
The festival, which features a range of music, discussion, sport and faith-inspired events, will run from February 1 to 11.
This year’s theme OUR STORIES…Towards A Culture Of Hope is “about showcasing Belfast and the stories of the people reflecting the essence of belonging and unity within the city’s diverse community”.
The upcoming festival’s suite of events is designed to entice people out of their own ‘corners’ of the city and into new places where they will encounter new perspectives, new ideas and hopefully meet new friends.
Here are 15 events you should check out at this year’s festival:
1. Unveiled – Stories In Scripture
Sunday 4th February 2024, 7pm, Fitzroy Presbyterian Church, 77 University Street
The opening Sunday will set up some of the Biblical thought for the Festival week.
Clare Hayns, who is College Chaplain at Christ Church in Oxford, has authored a book called Unveiled about the lesser known women in Scriptures.
She will also be joined by her son Micah who beautifully illustrated the book and will help to try and teach the audience how to draw.
Music for the evening will be by 4 Corners Festival favourites Beki Hemingway and her husband Randy Kerkman.
‘Unveiled – Stories In Scripture’, will be followed by Night Prayer, which provides an opportunity for a period of creative and contemplative prayer.
This event is taking place both in person and online, with the event live streamed on Youtube.
You can book tickets on https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/unveiled-stories-in-scripture/
2. Discovering Jesus in the Other: Challenging the Myth of Otherness Book Launch And Meet The Authors: Alan Abernethy and Jim Deeds
Monday 5th February 2024, 7.30pm, Agape Centre, 236-266 Lisburn Road
Why not join Bishop Alan Abernathy and Jim Deeds, a Catholic lay Pastoral Worker as they recount their experiences and faith journey in the context of “The Troubles’ and a divided community.
During the event, they will discuss how the process of writing the book helped them both to challenge the myth of otherness.
Music will also be provided by Beki Hemingway and Randy Kerkman.
3. Craic And Chronicles
Tuesday 6th February 2024, 4-6pm, 2 Royal Avenue
This is a creative workshop that is running in partnership with the Belfast Stories Project.
It provides everyone with an opportunity to explore creative writing, storytelling and craft in an informal atmosphere.
There are also light refreshments, with the event accompanied by a performance of musical storytelling.
To book tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/craic-and-chronicles/
4. Donal Walsh: A Story of Hope
Tuesday 6th February 2024, 7.30pm, Ekenhead Memorial Halls, North Circular Road
Donal Walsh touched many lives when he came to prominence through his writings and subsequent appearance on Brendan O’Connor’s ‘The Saturday Night Show’.
The teenager from Kerry fundraised tirelessly while battling cancer and has now had the Donal Walsh #Livelife Foundation set up by his family in order to promote his anti-suicide message.
The event will consist of a chat with Donal’s mother, Elma Walsh, who will discuss how she is continuing to honour her son’s legacy.
Music on the evening will be provided by the Fitzroy Collective who will perform songs from their Gospel, according to the late Sinead O’Connor.
To reserve your tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/donal-walsh-a-story-of-hope/
5. Matchbox City
Wednesday 7th February 2024, 12.30-2.30pm, 2 Royal Avenue
Matchbox City is a creative arts workshop, running in partnership with the Belfast Stories Project.
This event focuses on exploring the connection between memory and places or spaces in Belfast.
Each participant is invited to add their own matchbox memory to help build an alternative cityscape.
You can book tickets here https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/match-box-city/
6. Game of 4 Corners
Wednesday 7th February 2024, 6-9pm, QUB PEC, Stranmillis Embankment
Young people aged between 11 and 14 are invited to an exciting evening of sports and team activities delivered in partnership with PeacePlayers – NI.
Participants will try their hand at playing games including basketball, Gaelic football, rugby and soccer in integrated teams from across Belfast.
They will hear inspiring stories from local sportsmen and women and be encouraged to consider how they can contribute to a positive culture on and off the pitch.
Pre-registration is required for this event which is open to individuals and youth groups from across Belfast.
You can join the guestlist by going to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/game-of-4-corners/
7. The Blue Lights Story
Wednesday 7th February 2024, 7.30pm, All Saints College, Glen Road
Following a highly successful first series, the BBC has now commissioned a second series of the police drama Blue Lights.
Screen writers Declan Lawn and Adam Patterson will join Tyree Patton (MA student in Journalism at Ulster University) for an evening of conversation.
The event is followed by a Q&A session at All Saints College in West Belfast where part of the series was filmed.
To book tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/the-blue-lights-story/
8. Deadbeat Avenue
Thursday 8th February 2024, 7pm, Methodist College Belfast (Whitla Hall), 1 Malone Road
If you like a bit of drama then why not come along to Deadbeat Avenue?
The play is performed by primary school pupils from across Belfast, with assistance from Play it by Ear Drama Company.
The audience will be introduced to the inhabitants of Deadbeat Avenue, where they will tell their stories of perseverance, courage and hope.
To reserve tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/deadbeat-avenue/
9. Celebrating Young Voices Hopes For The Future
Thursday 8th February 2024, 7.30pm, 2 Royal Avenue
This event celebrates the creativity, passion and aspirations of young people in Belfast.
Hear the stories of young people who are leading the way in various spheres of influence.
Speakers include Jamie-Lukas Campbell, James Hamber, Iona Holt, Chloe Marks, Michael McPeake and Inez Murray, with Hedley Abernethy facilitating the discussion.
The music at the event will be provided by Noah Mitchell.
You can book tickets here https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/celebrating-young-voices-hopes-for-the-future/
10. An Evening In Conversation With TRÚ
Friday 9th February 2024, 7.30pm, Orangefield, Presbyterian Church, 464 Castlereagh Road
In ancient Ulster the Trú were a trio of poet-musicians whose songs told the story of the future.
When Zach Trouton, Dónal Kearney and Michael Mormech came together to refresh Irish traditional music with their songs and blended harmonies they decided to take the name.
This modern trio combines Irish nationalist, Ulster-Scots and British-Ukrainian heritages.
At this event, Steve Stockman will talk to Zac, Donal and Michael about their personal stories, with Mylie Brennan delving into what the stories they sing are all about.
To reserve your tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/an-evening-in-conversation-with-tru/
11. Wonderful Wander
Saturday 10 Feb 2024,1.30pm, starting at the Knock Road entrance to Connswater Greenway/Marshwiggle Way, opposite Glen Road.
This year’s event heads east to explore another of Belfast’s expanding network of greenways.
Wander along Marshwiggle Way and through the setting for Van Morrison’s “Orangefield”, where you can uncover some of the ancient, industrial, natural and artistic history of Belfast.
The walk will finish with refreshments at East Belfast Mission in the Skainos Centre.
A bus will be provided to return participants to any cars parked near the start of the walk.
To book tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/wonderful-wander/
12. 4 Corners Knitters
Saturday 10th February 2024, 2.30pm, Fitzroy Presbyterian Church, 77 University Street
Knitting the 4 Corners together with two forms of yarn (wool and conversation) has become a mainstay of the Festival over recent years.
Avid knitters from across the corners are invited to a day of chat and productivity.
In recent years Homeplus and the People’s Kitchen have benefitted from the knitwear.
You can book tickets here https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/4-corners-knitters/
13. The Stories That Shape Us
Saturday 10th February 2024, 7.30pm, Clayton Hotel, 22-26 Ormeau Avenue
This event is supported by the Linen Quarter Business Improvement District.
It hears from five public figures who tell us about a book that was significant in their lives and why.
The speakers will also be performing rehearsed readings from their chosen books.
To reserve tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/the-stories-that-shape-us/
14. Morning Service
Sunday 11th February 2024, 10am, 120 Cliftonville Road
This year’s annual 4 Corners Festival broadcast service on BBC Radio Ulster will look biblically at the Festival theme.
Preacher Rev Doug Gay will explore biblical teaching on Christian hope for the present and the future and how we can share the fruits of this hope with others.
Attendees must be present and seated by 9.30 am.
You can book tickets here https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/morning-service/
15. Towards A Culture Of Hope
Sunday 11th February 2024, 7pm, St Comgall’s, Divis St
The closing event at the 4 Corners Festival 2024 will encourage people to create a culture of hope.
Author, songwriter and theologian Rev Doug Gay will ruminate on what a hopeful imagination looks like and how we can land it on the streets and back alleys of our city.
He will be joined by the stunning voice and songs of Eilidh Patterson.
This event will be followed by Night Prayer in person and online at 9.30pm.
To reserve tickets go to https://www.4cornersfestival.com/festival-events/towards-a-culture-of-hope/
The 4 Corners Festival is supported by The Executive Office’s Central Good Relations Fund, The Department of Foreign Affairs Reconciliation Fund and Belfast City Council Good Relations Fund.
All festival events are free of charge, with most open to the public, although advance booking of tickets is mandatory. Select events will be streamed online on the official 4 Corners Festival YouTube and Facebook accounts.
For more information about the festival and to keep up to date with programme updates go to 4cornersfestival.com