Yeats Day Programme Launch

This year’s the Yeats Day festival will be for four days and is a key event of the Yeats2015 celebrations. Over 50 events will take place in Sligo between Thursday June 11th and Sunday, June 14th.

Minister of Arts, Heritage & the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys officially launched the programme of events for Yeats Day in the National Library of Ireland this evening. Minister Humphreys commented “Yeats Day 2015’’ takes on a special resonance this year, as it is part of the Yeats 2015 yearlong calendar of events, celebrating Yeats’ work 150 years after his birth. I am particularly excited about the Poet Laureate event, which will bring together the laureates from Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to perform together for the first time.”


Pictured at the Yeats Day programme Launch; Mark Henry, Tourism Ireland, Minister Heather Humphreys, Senator Susan O’ Keeffe, Minister Aodhan O’ Riordan.


The special poet laureate evening takes place on Saturday, June 13th in IT Sligo’s Knocknarea Arena and promises to be a wonderful celebration of the 150th birthday of WB Yeats. Featuring Paula Meehan, Ireland Professor of Poetry; Carol Ann Duffy, Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom; Gillian Clarke, National Poet of Wales; Liz Lochead, National Poet for Scotland; Aisling Fahey, Young Poet Laureate for London 2014/15; and Sinead Morrissey, Northern Irish Poet; in the presence of President Michael D. Higgins, patron of Yeats 2015. The poets will be joined on stage by renowned musician Mary McPartlan at this special evening which is being run in conjunction with the British Council. “British Council Ireland is delighted to be part of the global celebrations for Yeats150 and to bring such renowned poets from across the UK and Ireland together to celebrate Yeats” said Catrin Davies Programmes and Partnerships Manager with the British Council.

A short film featuring Irish-born actor Sir Michael Gambon CBE, reading ‘The Song of Wandering Aengus’ is also being launched. The film, directed by Thaddeus O’ Sullivan and made in partnership with Tourism Ireland features some of Sligo’s most stunning scenery, the inspiration for many of Yeats’ poems.

Yeats Day will celebrate the many aspects of WB Yeats and his family with a multi-disciplinary programme of events including visual art, pop up poetry, live art installations, candle-lit salons, drama, street performance, music, family events, the Lily Lolly CrafFest and much more. The ‘Yeats 2015 Architectural Competition’ winning design, ‘Square Moon’ by Shindesignworks, will be constructed on the island as a brief realisation of Yeats’ vision of the Lake Isle of Innisfree.

Other guests include authors Edna O’ Brien and Eimear McBride, Irish Ambassador to Great Britain Dan Mulhall, Dr Keith Hopper, and Professor Meg Harper.
Chair of the Yeats Day Committee Senator Susan O’ Keeffe said “Ireland will be the central location in the world this year for the international celebration of WB Yeats’ ‘’and is an opportunity for adults and children to join in celebrating his birthday.”

For further details please contact Yeats Day Project Co-ordinator Tara McGowan on / 087 – 221 4079 or Therese Madden 086 4672155

Further information on Yeats2015 events visit: