Seeking some drama, music, poetry and film to see you through the week ahead? Culture Unconfined festival launches online on 11th May.
Masterminded by the University of Liverpool, Culture Unconfined offers five days of drama, documentary, poetry, film and music to help people engage and stave off isolation during these lockdown times.
The online festival opens on Monday May 11th with A Museum for Me!, a chance to imagine and create your own perfect museum, tell your own stories and curate your own exhibition. There is even a special lockdown version to experiment with.
This is followed by renowned Irish composer, Gerald Barry’s dispatch from Los Angeles, where he is composing an opera based on Oscar Wilde’s Salome for the Los Angeles Opera, before former Royal Liverpool Philharmonic violinist Roisin Walters delivers a 30-minute concert connecting Irish songs and Bach dance movements from the Partitas.
The first day concludes with an exclusive radio documentary from Red Fox Theatre, around the making of their Dingle based performance piece, Catch of the Day.
Professor Peter Shirlow is Director of the University’s Institute of Irish Studies and co-organiser of Culture Unconfined. “One of the first casualties of Covid-19 was culture with the closure of venues, rehearsals and programming,” he says. “However, one of the first responses to the lockdown were performances on balconies and people using their creative talents to deal with the trauma of crisis. As much as crisis defined culture, it was clear culture was going to define crisis.”
Shirlow adds: “Culture Unconfined is the University of Liverpool’s response.’ “Culture Unconfined is the University of Liverpool’s response. It drives creative ambition with digital and live performances, it galvanizes hope and history and plays upon mirth and more thoughtful moments.”
Look out for musician, broadcaster, and writer Dr Deirdre Ní Chonghaile mapping the music of the Irish diaspora. This live talk is one of only two you need to rebook for.
Other highlights in the line-up include Alternative Bedtime Stories – definitely not one for the kids – by the Makey-Uppers, and poetry from Rita Ann Higgins.
Each day of the festival follows a schedule, with specific timings for each event. You can access each performance – and view the entire programme – through the Culture Unconfined website.
Festival Director and the University’s Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Cultural Engagement, Professor Dinah Birch says: “As the novelty of working from home begins to settle into a routine, it’s important that our online lives should continue to be refreshing and rewarding. Engaging with a variety of cultural resources is one of the best ways of staying connected, and expanding our sense of the new experiences that a virtual world makes possible.”
To access the performances, see the full schedule and find out more about Culture Unconfined, visit www.liverpool.ac.uk/culture-unconfined