WELCOME to the 9th Belgrade Irish Festival (BIF), a special hybrid edition taking place in Belgrade throughout St Patrick’s week, 12- 21 March 2021.
Given the wider circumstances, we devised a short and exciting multi-disciplinary Irish arts program which is purpose built (outdoor, online and where indoor, takes place with restricted audiences) for the times we live-in and, we hope, for one year only…
While our program has traditionally involves the participation of Irish and International visitors, this year we are unable to create the cultural connections and atmosphere that arises from bringing (extrovert) Celtic peoples together; instead we imagine a more remote set of ingredients to create the 9th Belgrade Irish Festival and hope to return to business as unusual in 2022.
We invite you to join us in a series of events to celebrate of St Patrick’s week in Belgrade; the highlights of which are described below and throughout this website in English and Serbian languages;
The Great Book of Ireland Outdoor Exhibition is a dramatic display of a unique, modern and secular Illuminated book on view along Belgrade’s beautiful river Sava during March and April. Join us at Savamala Promenada on Saturday 13th at 1300 for a small opening ceremony.
The extraordinary telling of the making of this Illuminated book, which captures the imagination of an island of artists uniquely at work on vellum pages, forms the subject of a well-crafted documentary film focusing on theses creative processes; And, one of the Great Book’s editors, Theo Dorgan, a renowned poet himself, joins us after the screening for an online Q&A…..
Come and enjoy Ireland, its culture and people (or watch from the comfort of your home) some of the latest Irish movies and documentaries between the 12th and 21st March.
Liam Neeson narrates a new and acclaimed documentary on the Irish Famine while a beautifully shot (on location in the west of Ireland) feature film, Arracht, dramatizes the same period and is Ireland’s Oscar entry (2021).
Sea Fever is a haunting thriller set on a fishing trawler and features the Irish and internationally acclaimed actress Olwen Fouéré, who will join us online after the screening (15 March).
A portrait of Nobel Prize-winning (1995) poet Seamus Heaney; his family recalls the experiences that inspired his finest poems in the BBC documentary, Seamus Heaney and the Music of What Happens; followed by Q&A given by Stefan Pajović, translator into Serbian of Heaney’s late poetic works, Human Chain of the Known World (Zbirka Živi lanac znanog sveta, 2019).
A Serbian translation (with English Subtitles) of the coming-of-age play, Disco Pigs, (which propelled actor Cillian Murphy into a Irish household name in the 1990s) will have two performances, and is a rare opportunity to see the acclaimed play in our very own Dorcol. Recommended to book in advance.
Immerse yourself in the seemingly barren modernist works of Samuel Beckett, (Nobel prize in Literature, 1969) whose plays are screened for the first time in Belgrade.
Pop in and out of screenings around the clock, directed and performed by thespian luminaries John Gielgud, Harold Pinter, David Mamet, Atom Egoyan Jeremy Irons, Neil Jordan, Alan Rickman, John Hurt, Michael Gambon while artist Damien Hirst get’s a look in, directing Breath. All things Beckett at UK Parobrod, 12th March+
Dean Coady (Photography Exhibition) is an Corkonian photographer and world traveller currently based in Dorcol, where he captures the seen and unseen spirits of our beloved hillside citadel, bringing to life its nooks and crannies and exploring its disjoined beauty with a crack eye and camera. Join us at Parobrod on Friday 12th at 1700 for the opening.
Don’t miss an exhibition of the works of local artist Biljana Vukovic, whose unique printmaking technique are used to create miniature watercolour-like pictures inspired from around the sacred Serbian monastic site of Studenica, and takes place at Beograd Art gallery in the beautiful Kosančićev venac area overlooking the Sava.
And finally look out and look up for the traditional Belgrade Greening of significant city structures and buildings on the 17th of March, when Belgrade joins the over 100 countries around the globe to mark St Patrick’s Day.
All events online or otherwise are 200 dinars or free. And keep an eye out online at
Finally, I would like to extend my sincerest gratitude to our public and private sectors partners for their support during these difficult times; from Ireland, especially for support given by the Embassy of Ireland, Culture Ireland and Irish Film International (whose experienced and dedicated personnel provided us with an online platform to stream films); and finally back to Belgrade, where a small and dedicated BIF (9) team have worked hard during these uncertain times to make another Irish arts program possible in Belgrade again.
Thank you !
Happy St Patrick’s Day
Belgrade Irish Festival.
BELGRADE IRISH FESTIVAL CONTINUES WITH ONLINE SCREENING AND OUTDOOR PROGRAM!
The fascinating exhibition of The Great Book of Ireland is held on the beautiful Savamala Promenade, while Belgrade joins the world's metropolises in Greening tonight - next to New York, London, Boston, Sydney and Moscow and our capital will shine green in honor of the celebration St. Patrick's Day!
Wherever you are in Serbia, this year we’d like to see your pictures on the themes of
1. GREENING IT UP - What does greening say to you this Spring?
2. CELTIC CONNECTIONS - Share your photo that illustrates Celtic connections between Serbia and Ireland.
DUE TO NEW COVID -19 WEEKEND MEASURES ANNOUNCED BY CRISIS RESPONSE TEAM, ALL BELGRADE IRISH FESTIVAL CULTURAL EVENTS PLANNED FOR THIS WEEKEND ARE CANCELED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE.
NEW DATES OF THE EVENTS WILL BE ANNOUNCED AT A LATER DATE
The Great Book of Ireland – Leabhar Mór na hÉireann, is a vellum manuscript and modern illuminated book, produced in Dublin between 1989 and 1991. It incorporates the work of Irish poets (144), artists (121) and composers (9). All the contributors worked directly onto the large (handmade) vellum pages and their work was unified by calligrapher Denis Brown.
The European Union is Serbia’s n°1 supporter: main political and economic partner, largest trade actor, first investor and biggest donor.
This is also true for creative industries, which are essential for our economy and society. In Serbia, they have the potential to boost competitiveness, productivity, employment and sustainable economic growth, enabling Serbian entrepreneurs to participate in a growing global economy.
I am delighted to introduce and support the Belgrade Irish Festival on behalf of the Embassy of Ireland. This has been an exceptionally strange, difficult, and sometimes sad year. The crisis has had a particularly harsh impact on the arts and on creative artists, with long periods when audiences were unable to gather. But this year has also made us value art and performance all the more, as a comfort and an inspiration, a welcome distraction from our fears, and as a way to help us understand the experiences we have been through.