Tickets Now on Sale for Great Autumn/Winter Events at the Alley!!!

The new Alley Theatre autumn/winter programme will be landing on our doorsteps very soon but here is a quick preview on what is coming up over the next six  months.

Superb music is in store as the Alley Café Bar will host a range of music events over the next couple of months including Summer Jazz nights, David Oliver, Anthony Toner and Sounds Like Summer presents The Homecoming.  A perfect setting to catch up with friends, have a few drinks and unwind to a varied programme of entertainment.

A wide range of festivals will also be on offer over the coming months including The Johnny Crampsie Festival, Flan O’Brien Centenary Celebrations and Culture Night.  Strabane District will take part in their first ever Culture Night on 23rd September joining 28 other cities across Ireland in a night of free events such as music, dance and exhibitions to name but a few.  Check out the Culture Night Strabane Facebook page on for further information.

To celebrate the Centenary of Flann O’Brien Strabane District Council, The Alley Theatre, Gaelphobal, Strabane Gaelscoil, Strabane History Society and NI Libraries have compiled a programme of talks, discussions and performances designed to explore the life and work of Strabanes most famous sons. In October the Johnny Crampsie Festival is back for another great line up which will include C.R.A.I.C playing live sessions as well as Four Men and A Dog taking to the stage.

The new season opens up with some fantastic shows including ‘Irelands Funny Man’ Conal Gallen with his brand new show; this is followed Britain’s Got Talent Star RJ Woolsey as he plays tribute to 5 outstanding rock legends including Meatloaf, Dire Straits and Queen.  An evening of glam and frolics will take to the stage as the wonderful Foyle Follies are back with special guests.

Both stunning and freaky mind reader David Meade will be coming to the Alley for the first time, this is expected to be a sell out show after the success of his BBC TV show the David Meade Project so early booking is advisable.

Comedy and laughs are in store in November and December as Colin Murphy and Jake O’Kane take to the stage with their brilliant new shows.

For the younger audience there is plenty to see coming up to Christmas as the magnificent Cahoots NI are back with their new production ‘Egg’ A delightful new theatre production for young children with magic, live music and plenty of action.  Other children shows include ‘Santa and the Present Pirates’, ‘Stars in your Eyes’ by Strabane Academy and ‘Disney Classics’ in aid of Foyle Hospice.

The magic of Christmas comes alive as European Ballet presents ‘The Nutcracker’, highly respected dancers from all over the world will perform in this beautiful production.

Community participation plays a winning role in this season programme with shows such Castlederg Leading Men and Strabane Community Panto looking for people to take part no matter what your experience.  For more information on how to take part please contact the Alley Theatre on 028 71 384444.

Winter wouldn’t be the same without Christmas concerts such as The Showstoppers and The Christmas Carol Concert all in aid of Marie Curie

For further information or to book tickets click here or contact the Alley Theatre Box Office on 028 71 384444

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Upcoming Performances

  • Summer Jazz Night

Friday 05 August 2011 Friday 26 August 2011


  • Border Youth 2011

Wednesday 17 August 2011


  • Conal Gallen

Saturday 03 September 2011


  • RJ Rocks 80’s

Saturday 10 September 2011


  • An Evening with The Foyle Follies & Guests

Saturday 17 September 2011


  • Spreading the News

Saturday 24 September 2011


Featured Event

Conal Gallon

Ireland’s Number 1 comedian is back once again with his brand new show “Laughing All Over The World”. Conal Gallen has become without doubt the most popular comic in the Irish theatre scene with all shows in his last five theatre tours selling out! His brand of humour is absolutely hilarious and has all of his audiences in stitches from start to finish. With over 30 Albums to date Conal has more material than he knows what to do with and is constantly coming up with new material while on the road. He has had multi platinum selling DVDs along with a number of massive hits and countless awards under his belt! Come along and see why he is truly Irelands best loved comedian. And don’t forget to book your tickets early, as they don’t call him “Close The Doors Gallen” for nothing!!!!

Saturday 03 Sep @ 20:00 PM – 23:00 PM


The Chet Baker Show at The Bandstand.

Ward Park will come to life this Sunday, 31st July when The Chet Baker Show takes to The Bandstand to tell the story of this iconic jazz instrumentalist and singer.

This jazz theatre show has received accolades all over Ireland where it has toured extensively. Linley Hamilton, a well-respected BBC radio jazz presenter on “After Midnight with Linley Hamilton”, narrates between tracks with all the tracks being popular recordings originally made by Chet. The accompanying music comes from an internationally acclaimed jazz/swing quintet, comprising of John Leighton on piano, Dr. David Lyttle on drums, Damien Evens on bass and Alex Mathias on alto sax.

So come along to Ward Park this Sunday to enjoy this jazz treat! The show kicks off at 3pm and runs til 5pm.

North Down Borough Council’s Summer Entertainment Programme will see live street theatre at The Sunken Gardens every Saturday & Sunday in July and August (from 3 – 5pm). There will also be live music at The Bandstand in Ward Park every Sunday from 3 – 5pm during July and August.

Keep an eye out in local press for details on each artist or for more information phone our Tourist Information Centre on 028 9127 0069 or visit:

The Juggling Fugitive and Owen Lean Return to The Sunken Gardens!

Looking for some family entertainment, this Saturday & Sunday 30th & 31st July? Then come along to The Sunken Gardens where North Down Borough Council’s Summer Entertainment Programme continues with the amazing Jack Flash (aka the Juggling Fugitive) and the fabulous Owen Lean.

Ireland`s leading juggler of rings, batons, knives and even fire – The Juggling Fugitive has performed to over 10 million people in America and Canada while in Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey’s Greatest Show on Earth. The Juggling Fugitive has also been featured in Life Magazine and on the Good Morning America TV Show. With over 20 years of internationally acclaimed professional juggling experience this act is quality family entertainment with lots of jokes thrown in! His show on Saturday 30th will start at 3pm and run til 5pm.

The frolics continue in the same spot on Sunday, 31st of July with the magical Owen Lean –  believed to be the first person in the world to have obtained a BA in magic ! Owen has been performing for pretty much all of his life, concentrating on magic since the tender age of 18. Ten years on, Owen is now one of the world’s most respected Street Magicians, having performed on over five continents and attracted praise from the media, his fellow magicians and performers, not to mention the hundreds of thousands of people who have experienced his show.

Owen Lean’s show kicks off at 3pm and runs til 5pm so come along and join the fun!

North Down Borough Council’s Summer Entertainment Programme will see live street theatre at The Sunken Gardens every Saturday & Sunday in July and August (from 3 – 5pm). There will also be live music at The Bandstand in Ward Park every Sunday from 3 – 5pm during July and August.

Keep an eye out in local press for details on each artist or for more information phone our Tourist Information Centre on 028 9127 0069 or visit:

Smarts appointed as Belfast PR Agency for 2011 MTV EMAs

Belfast, 26 July 2011 Northern Ireland’s leading communications consultancy, Smarts has been appointed by Viacom International Media Networks UK & Ireland to manage its public relations on an all Ireland basis for the upcoming MTV EMAs at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast.

Supporting one of the world’s most iconic music events, Smarts will manage an extensive media relations campaign aimed at raising the profile of the MTV EMAs in Belfast on 6th November 2011.

Kate Laverge, Vice President of Communications, Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) and VIMN UK & Ireland said: “We are hugely excited to be bringing the EMAs to Belfast.  We are confident that Smarts’ proven reputation, extensive knowledge and relationships within Ireland’s media community will strategically position MTV’s EMAs with our regional audiences and partners.”

The MTV EMAs celebrate the best in music, youth culture and entertainment. The show is hosted in a different city each year and will be the biggest music event ever staged in Northern Ireland.

Summertime FUNK set to shine across the country!

When you talk about FUNK, we all think of James Brown, the Godfather of FUNK, however watch out as a new group are in town trying to claim that Funk throne! Dylan Quinn Dance Theatre Company have just announced details of their new nationwide tour, entitled “FUNK”, which critics are already saying might have James Brown bowing at the high alter of Funk looking for an encore!

The new FUNK show is a vibrant interactive dance performance from the award winning Enniskillen based Dylan Quinn Dance Theatre. Promising to brighten up the Irish summer with a comprehensive tour across 8 venues this August, this highly anticipated tour will be going to all four corners of Northern Ireland with its wonderful interpretation of FUNK in the 21st century. On the menu will be 6 international dancers, 1 wicked DJ, fabulous quirky venue’s and loads of FUNK! Talking about the forthcoming tour, which is already in intensive rehearsals, Dylan Quinn, founder and performer with the Dylan Quinn Dance Theatre stated “This unique performance from a cast of superb international dancers will present the audience with a truly captivating night of the very best in FUNK dance, blended with wonderful venues and a enthralling soundtrack, which we promise will flow through all your senses.”

What will it be like to attend? “Not only will you enjoy a fantastic performance from our FUNK dance group, but you also get to hear some of the greatest music tracks ever produced in the name of FUNK! Dress up, sit back, dance and move to the sounds of James Brown, George Clinton and others, watching the room fill with a wonderful Funk vibe.  Each night will be different and have a certain FUNK vibe feeding off the audience reaction. We intend to transport you during the show to one of the funkiest places in the world and make it a night to remember!”

“If they want to join in after the show, the floor will be free to everyone as the DJ plays on! We can truly say this will be a night like no other and we welcome group bookings to come along to enjoy one of the world’s most addictive forms of music and dance” concluded Dylan Quinn.  Tickets, which are priced at only £6/£4(con), can purchased online at or via the ticket hotline on 028 66328686. For group tickets please contact the ticket hotline for FREE ticket discount information. Tour location will include Portadown, Newry, Antrim, Belfast, Dungannon, Enniskillen Armagh, Derry~Londonderry and Newcastle. For further information concerning times and dates please visit  Funk and its tour of Northern Ireland has been made possible with support from the National Lottery through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.

‘It’s an honour to headline Glasgowbury’

With Eagles Rock ready to be shook to its very foundations this weekend, headliners Cashier No 9 are primed and ready to roll and have described the honour they felt at being chosen to bring this year’s event to a close.

To The Death Of Fun, their absolutely cracking debut album, has seen the light of day to widespread acclaim and they cap the summer off in style by taking headlining duties atop the Small But Massive Main Stage at Glasgowbury 2011.

“We’re busy rehearsing this week,” said drummer Phil Duffy.

“Normally we’re used to playing 30 minute sets so we’re getting prepared for an hour long slot, we’re having to dust off a few of the old ones.

“They’ll all be getting a run out including When Jackie Shone and 42 West Avenue, it’s going to be an hour full of hits.”

While the debut steered away from the inclusion of the two above mentioned stand outs, it managed to create a legend all of its own from start to finish, much like Cashier No 9 have been doing over the years.

“Myself and Danny (Todd) first played the festival back in 2002 so we’ve been around for a large part of it and slowly but surely we’ve been climbing up the bill over the years.

“But it’s an absolute honour among all of us to be considered as headliners of Glasgowbury this year, we can’t wait, it’s going to be something special.”

So while the immediate future sees the band play their biggest headline show to date, the best is still yet to come if the now 6 piece have anything to say about it.

After a summer full of debauchery sees them tour the length and breadth of Ireland and the UK, they’ll look as far away as Australia for their next stab at domination; a country where Goldstar is already play-listed on major radio.

And then of course there’s the follow-up opus to be considered.

“Danny’s already started work on the next one but we’re really concentrating on working this one and giving it time to breathe first.”

No doubt they’ll find plenty of room for it on the side of Eagles Rock this Saturday night.




GUINNESS® today announced that Arthur’s Day is set to make a welcome return and that celebrations will take place in Belfast this year as well as Dublin, Cork and Limerick on Thursday 22nd September.

Music fans in Northern Ireland will get the opportunity to pay tribute to the remarkable legacy of Arthur Guinness, right on their own doorstep, when acclaimed international and Irish acts give intimate performances in bars across Belfast as well as in a larger studio venue in the city.

Details of the full line up for the studio event in Belfast will be announced closer to the time. Adding to the Arthur’s Day occasion will be the element of surprise at the pub venues across the city. Fans attending these events will know they are going to see a big name act in an intimate pub setting, but they won’t know who until they turn up on stage on Arthur’s Day.

Guinness continues to bring fans closer to the action and earlier today the launch of Arthur’s Day featured live performances from Northern Ireland’s Cashier No. 9, Aloe Blacc, Paloma Faith, Ryan Sheridan and Bressie. This was just a taste of what’s to come on Arthur’s Day itself.  Guinness fans all over the North and South of Ireland, were treated to exclusive live footage of the performances and a special shout out to Guinness Facebook fans who were to a live stream on the Guinness Ireland Facebook page.

Speaking today Aloe Blacc said “I am delighted to be in Dublin for the launch of Arthur’s Day. I love the idea of performing in the intimate surrounds of a pub – it’s fantastic. Sharing a music experience like this with our fans will be incredible and of course raising a toast to Arthur at 17.59. Roll on 22nd September!

Also speaking today, Tanya Clarke, Marketing Director, Diageo Island of Ireland said, “We are thrilled to announce that Arthur’s Day is back, and this year even more countries will host live music events to mark the occasion with performances taking place all across the world, kick-starting right here in Dublin, the home of Guinness”.

“Now in its third year, Arthur’s Day has proven a massive hit with people throughout Ireland and indeed the globe. This year we are delighted to extend our Irish music hubs to pubs and venues in Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Belfast, where music fans will be treated to internationally acclaimed musicians, in the intimate surrounds of their local pub.”

At 17:59 locally and around the world, countries including Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Caribbean nations, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, Japan, Singapore and South Korea, will all join in the celebrations to mark the philanthropic legacy of Arthur Guinness.

Arthur’s Day continues the philanthropic tradition of Arthur Guinness with all ticket proceeds from the day going directly to the Arthur Guinness Fund.

The Arthur Guinness Fund, along with Arthur’s Day was established as part of the Guinness brand’s 250th celebrations in 2009. The Arthur Guinness fund has had a significant and positive transformational impact on local communities in Ireland. Last week we drew down on a further €650,000 from the fund, which was awarded to another ten Irish social entrepreneurs. The ten entrepreneurs with each of their unique projects will not only receive financial support but also professional business mentoring over the next two years.

Tickets for Arthur’s Day go on sale from Ticketmaster on 4th August.

For detailed information about GUINNESS® and Arthur’s Day visit

Arthur’s Day celebrations are strictly over 18’s events.

The GUINNESS, ARTHUR GUINNESS DAY. Arthur’s Day™ and ARTHUR GUINNESS FUND™ words and associated logos are trade marks.

Drink Responsibly for the facts

Welcome Back to the North Down Pipeband Championships : Saturday 23 July 2011

Bangor’s Town Hall will make a spectacular backdrop for this year’s North Down Pipeband Championships this Saturday, 23rd July.

With over 55 bands from all over the country and even a visiting band from Belgium, Borderline,  the competition promises to be exciting.

The competition runs from 11.30 am and will finish about 5.30 pm with a short parade.

The Mayor of North Down, Councillor James McKerrow said:

“I am delighted to be acting as Chieftain at this spectacular event, hopefully we will have

sunshine and a wonderful family day out”.

For  more information phone our Tourist Information Centre on 028 9127 0069 or visit:

The Countdown in on to Hogfest 2011 !

Following the success of last years Hogfest at LCDI in Limavady, which saw money being raised for groups who work with young people in the Roe Valley, including the Creative Holistic Art Therapy Project and the Kids Out Project which is ran by Limavady Rotary Club taking children from Rossmar School bowling .  For the second year running the committee have decided to do it all again, Only this one will be bigger and better than the first in 2010.

Bettylee and the Blonge who will be one of the acts performing at this year's Hogfest.

The event itself is scheduled for Saturday 13th August 2011, in association with Northwest Lifelong Learning, Roe Valley Chamber of Commerce and Limavady Rotary Club and is being held by kind permission in the grounds of Limavady Community Development Initiative.  This years event is being organised in much the same format as it’s predecessor.

Kidsfest will see amusements and food for the kids is being held from 11 am to 3 pm, lets hope we can expect the same weather as in 2010.  The Hogfest itself begins at 6 pm and includes snail racing and many other fun activities.  Whoosh Creative Asian Catering is catering food this year, a fully licensed bar will also be in attendance.   Many local artists including Bobbie Harvey, Betty Lee & the Blonde are providing music on the night

More information including how to get your hands on tickets will be released next week.  Keep an eye both in The Northern Constitution and online via official media partners of Hogfest 2011.

Its monkey business for The Adventure Team!

It’s monkey business for ‘The Adventure Team’ who have become Belfast Zoo’s latest corporate partner!

The Adventure Team are ready for the challenges ahead as Belfast Zoo's latest corporate partner! Pictured with zoo manager, Mark Challis.

As sponsors of the chimpanzee enclosure, The Adventure Team will not only be contributing to the care of these apes but will also be supporting a number of the zoo’s upcoming events by providing services such as archery, zip lines, team games, treasure hunts and much more!

Director of ‘The Adventure Team’, Stephen Brown, has over 20 years of experience in outdoor pursuits and is delighted that they can support the work of the zoo through the partnership scheme,

“Our ethos is to get people outdoors, working together, having fun and learning something new about themselves and others. We are adventurous, full of fun and noise, which according to the staff at the zoo, fits with the chimpanzees’ characteristics. I am very excited to see what the year has in store for us as corporate partners and look forward to the challenges involved. Bring it on!”

Every year Belfast Zoo also takes part in conservation projects run by the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA) and this year the focus is the EAZA Save the Apes Campaign.  Almost all apes are threatened and almost all are either endangered or critically endangered and the aim of the campaign is to make a significant and lasting contribution to the continued survival of apes and their habitats.

As part of this campaign, Belfast Zoo, will be celebrating ape week from 22 to 26 August and ‘The Adventure Team’ will be on site with their zip line so that all of your ‘little monkeys’ can swing through the trees.  During this week, families can also participate in activities including; face painting, arts and crafts, keeper talks and animal feeding times.

Zoo manager Mark Challis is delighted to welcome yet another corporate partner to the zoo, “The corporate partnership scheme at the zoo is very important. Not only does it contribute and help to the conservation and enrichment to the animal of choice, but it creates lasting business partnerships and opportunities for both the zoo and the organisation involved.”

“Chimpanzees face huge threats in the wild and their populations have steadily declined in recent years from deforestation, bush meat hunting and live animal trading. It’s great to have The Adventure Team on board and that they will be supporting our ‘Save the Ape’ campaign throughout the year. I look forward to welcoming Stephen and his team throughout the year to many of our events.”

You can find out more about ‘The Adventure Team’ by visiting their website, and a full listing of zoo events can be found at