Saturday, August 30, 2014

Seamus Heaney Events 2014

Bellaghy Bawn is the main location for the weekend's commemorative events.

Sat 2.30pm, the cemetery at St Mary's Church, poems will be read by graduates of the Seamus Heaney Centre at Queen's University in Belfast.

A procession of celebration will then move through the village to the Turfman sculpture, where there will be choral music in his memory. Under the guidance of Magherafelt's Gino Lupari – of Four Men And A Dog fame – an afternoon of music will follow.

The Sands family will perform a memorial concert from 7.30pm in the Bawn marquee, where invited and local guests will hear a songbook specially prepared for the occasion. Derry man Gerard McChrystal will evoke the poem Mid Term Break through a specially commissioned piece for the saxophone. Afterwards, the public is invited to The Wall at Ballydermot Road to witness an event at Church Island.

On Sunday from 2pm there is an open mic session where visitors can read, write, sing, play or just listen. A series of coach tours of 'Seamus Heaney Country' will also take place with specialist guides exploring in detail the inspirations that framed the poet's life and work.

Full details online at

On Home Ground Festival. September 11-14th.

"Highlights of the programme include an exhibition of films made for the BBC and presented by Seamus Heaney, many of which have never been broadcast more than once.

There will be readings from some of Ireland’s finest writers and poets, children’s workshops, a poetry picnic, coach tours of ‘Heaney country’ and In Conversations with special guests – including Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody who will read Heaney poetry and perform songs, one of which he has dedicated to the late poet, and musicians Neil Martin, Rod McVey and actress Brid Brennan, will perform a bespoke session on Heaney. Artist Colin Davidson, whose portrait of Heaney was the last painting Heaney sat for, will be In Conversation with writer Glenn Patterson."