Press Release – Fermanagh and Omagh


Bounce Arts Festival comes to Fermanagh and Omagh with celebration of diversity

Fermanagh and Omagh will host a number of events during the Bounce Arts Festival, Northern Ireland’s leading celebration of artistic diversity and inclusion, which return from October 6 to 8.

The line-up includes a panel discussion of artists and creatives from across Fermanagh and Omagh District Council area at the Ardhowen Theatre.
Noelle McAlinden and a panel of guests will discuss the topic of Building a Culture of Creativity, Self-Expression, Compassion and Community as they reflect on their practice as artists, educators and activists.

The festival also includes an inclusive, magical mystery Pop Art Workshop at the Strule Arts Centre in Omagh.

Other events in the west of Northern Ireland include For the Love of Mary at the Alley Theatre in Strabane, a bilingual autobiographical journey to find the Virgin Mary performed by spoken word artist Mel Bradley.

Derry is hosting a number of events including ‘Derry Ones – What’s the Craic’ performed in front of the Guildhall by Stage Beyond, the award-winning theatre company for adults with learning difficulties. The company is bringing its famous puppet show to town for a stellar line-up of fun sketches with a Derry theme, with a host of celebrity characters popping up from behind the curtain on the steps of the Guildhall.

The Au-some Collective will create an inclusive choral environment to raise awareness of neurodiversity with primary school children at the Tuned In Centre. There will also be a pop-up music event featuring Derry’s own Jude Kuzma, aka DJ Bulletix at the North West Transport Hub. An electronic music composer and producer, graphic artist and wild-life watcher, he is known for his energetic performances and distinctive vocals.

Other events happening in the city are Lough Fad: A User’s Guide book launch and performance with Ciaran O Dochartaigh at The Centre for Contemporary Art and Serve Your Rights! Poster Making Workshop and Display led by local artist Indigo Azidahaka inviting children aged 4-14 to a fun filled workshop to learn about human rights.
Run by the University of Atypical, the festival showcases the extraordinary talent and creativity of d/Deaf, Disabled and neurodiverse artists in the UK, Ireland and beyond with a focus on accessibility for all audiences.

Many of the performances and workshops are free or pay what you can, and encompass all aspects of the arts including theatre, dance, comedy, puppetry, visual arts and talks.
Damien Coyle, Chief Executive of University of Atypical, said: “The Bounce Festival has now evolved into one of the largest celebrations of artistic diversity and inclusivity in these islands. We are proud to be bringing it to new venues across Northern Ireland so that more people can enjoy the performances and ideas that these incredible artists have to offer.”

Events will be held in Belfast and Derry/Londonderry, Omagh, Strabane, Downpatrick, Enniskillen and Cookstown.

The University of Atypical, a disabled-led arts charity, is celebrating its 30th year of supporting and developing the talent of d/Deaf, disabled, and neurodiverse artists and reaching wider audiences through access and inclusion.

The organisation started the Bounce Arts Festival in 2012 as part of the Cultural Olympiad and this year it is supported by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Department for Communities, Belfast City Council, The Ireland Funds, The National Lottery Communities Fund and The Santander Foundation.

Patricia Lavery, Head of Community Arts & Education, Arts Council of Northern Ireland said: “We are committed to supporting the work of d/Deaf, disabled, and neurodivergent artists. The Bounce Arts Festival offers an important platform to shine a light on work from these amazing artists. Congratulations to University of Atypical for curating a terrific programme for Bounce this year, which features some of the most talented artists from Northern Ireland and beyond. I would encourage everyone to go along and enjoy this exciting and inspirational festival which is simply unmissable.”

For more information on all shows and to book tickets, go to

Strule Arts Centre is one of the venues that will be hosting an event for the Bounce Arts Festival. Pictured at the centre is Jennifer Gourley with Jonathan Mitchell, Access and Inclusion Coordinator at UofA and Federica Ferrieri, Bounce Coordinator.

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