European Capital of Culture

Galway 2020

In 2020 Galway, Ireland becomes the European Capital of Culture, a year of extraordinary creativity 

IMBOLC (February – April)

 January concerts will warm up crowds for February’s incredible Opening Ceremony, as WonderWorks prepare to spark a fiery, festive launch.

Galway 2020 Opening Event , 1st-8th February, Location - Galway City and County

Moving ever closer to the city throughout the first week of Imbolc, a huge cast drawn from across the community will invade the streets and squares of Galway on the evening of Saturday 8 February 2020

Marking the passing of winter and the blossoming of an extraordinary new year, the opening event celebrates the quintessential values of Irishness – courage, creativity and resilience. Taking place in the open air, everyone is welcome and the event is free to attend.

In paying homage to the stories of the past and those elements that make Galway special, the ceremony will move to recognise the community’s future in a breathtaking event that will encompass all that places Galway, and Ireland, at the heart of Europe in 2020.

 LUGHNASA (August – October 2020)

A wild time of harvest plenty – great fairs, horse-racing, story-telling and firelit dancing.

 Moving through Bealtaine towards the abundant Lughnasa, we’re invited to celebrate this diverse and vibrant community on the edge of Europe.

Lughnasa bears the name of Celtic god Lugh – a warrior, craftsman and inventor of games. With the alchemy of Cie Carabosse’s Fire Garden and balancing acts of Galway Community Circus’s Wires Crossed, Lughnasa proves that mastery and merriment make for good bedfellows.

SAMHAIN (November – January 2020)

The darkest season – a time of mystery, mischief and mourning.

 Samhain ushers in the darkness of winter, when the border between life and the Otherworld is faint. This point in the programme asks us to reflect on our past and place faith in an unknown future.

Comhaltas celebrates the beauty of traditional Irish culture, while Nighthouse Studio’s Unsung promises a moving contemporary tribute to Galway’s lost children. Ancient customs are honoured and new values embraced, as we light the way forward in an unforgettable Lumiere Galway closing event.

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