Events run throughout May 2024



Bealtaine, Ireland’s annual festival celebrating creativity as we age, runs throughout the month of May. Developed by Age & Opportunity, the 2024 festival offers events for public audiences and care settings across the country.

The festival operates across two strands: an in-house programme, curated by Age & Opportunity’s Arts team, and a national programme, made up of hundreds of events organised and curated locally by a wide variety of groups.

From dance celebrations to comedy showcases and immersive storytelling experiences, attendees can expect a diverse array of events that embrace the all-new Bealtaine festival theme chosen by Age & Opportunity, Lust for Life, inspired by the Iggy Pop classic hit.

Check out some of our festival highlights!

Caring for Creativity
This exhibition at Roscommon Arts Centre brings together works by artists who had residencies in local care settings in Roscommon over the past year. Curated by Andy Parsons, the exhibition explores what is given by the artists – and what they receive in return. The idea of reciprocity, an exchange of inspiration and ideas, is the theme that connects the varied work in the exhibition. Running throughout May and June.

The Dawn Chorus
The Dawn Chorus is a nationwide choral event in which older people come together with a choir in their locality and sing at dawn to welcome the day and the season. For the flagship event, Drimoleague Community Choir in Cork will open the festival on Sunday 5 May, celebrating the Bealtaine theme of Lust for Life in style.

Prom Night
Prom Night offers an inclusive opportunity for older LGBTQIA+ individuals and those who missed out on prom experiences to dress up and relive the magic of Prom. Hosted in partnership with Street 66 and Outhouse at Street 66 in Dublin, Prom Night takes place on 16 May featuring performances by iconic drag artist Alan Amsby (AKA Mr Pussy), a special photo-booth by photographer Enda Burke, and music by DJ Ruth Kavanagh.

The Poetry Line 
Receive a personal phone call from an award-winning poet who will read you 2-3 poems. Participating poets include Anne Tannam, current Poet in Residence at Poetry Ireland, Nandi Jola, Lani O’Hanlon and Martina Evans. A collaboration between Age & Opportunity and Poetry Ireland, The Poetry Line is free to book. Open for sign-ups from 29 April – 3 May: Call Moira at 087 992 7546 between 10am – 4pm.

The Poetry Line poets will also be doing live readings on 22 May at the National Library of Ireland, joined by one of Ireland’s legendary female vocalists Leslie Dowdall of In Tua Nua with singer songwriter Mark Caplice. If you have a poem you’d like to share, why not sign up for the open mic on the day?

National Arts in Nursing Homes Day: Friday 17 May
National Arts in Nursing Homes Day showcases the wonderful but often hidden creative activity taking place with residents of nursing homes and in day care centres. A partnership with Nursing Homes Ireland, the Bealtaine website includes listings of participating care settings around the country. Events are by invitation only unless otherwise stated.

Bealtaine Programme
For the full programme of Bealtaine events visit

Planning a Bealtaine event?
Your Bealtaine event can be registered via the Bealtaine website. The Bealtaine audience can search your event by locality, artform or date. Registration is open throughout the month of May.

Bealtaine Festival is led by Age & Opportunity, the leading national development organisation improving the quality of life of older people. The festival is funded by the Arts Council and the HSE.

Feature image: Bealtaine Dawn Chorus 2023, Dunmore East, Waterford. Photo Davi Matheson.


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