Thursday 7 January 2010

Lunch and Literature

Info courtesy of the No Alibis Newsletter...

Happy fifth birthday for ‘Out to Lunch Arts Festival’

The Out to Lunch Arts Festival is back in 2010, bigger, better and bolder than ever.

From 6 – 31 January, the precocious younger sibling of the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival impresses once again with a wildly diverse, attractive and affordable a la carte selection of music, literature, theatre, comedy and art.

Since it started in 2006, Out to Lunch has become the winter arts festival in Belfast, offering those living in, working in or just visiting the city nutritional and cultural sustenance through the long dark lunchtimes and teatimes of January.

Proving that quality and quantity aren’t mutually exclusive, Out to Lunch kick-starts the cultural calendar for 2010 with a dizzying array of entertainment, talent and food. And all from just a fiver a ticket.

A full programme of events is available at No Alibis Bookstore , you can also view events and book tickets online at or in person at The Belfast Welcome Centre, 47 Donegall Place, Belfast

LITERATURE EVENTS taking place at this year’s Out to Lunch Festival include:

Brian Keenan

Wednesday January 13

The Black Box


Brian Keenan became known around the world as a hostage in Beirut and author of the extraordinary testimony of imprisonment, An Evil Cradling.

In this special ‘Out to Lunch’ event, Brian Keenan joins us to discuss his life and talk about his new memoir, Ill Tell Me Ma, in which he captures the vanished world of 1950s Belfast and his own disaffected childhood.

Chris Mullin: A View from the Foothills

Friday January 15

The Black Box


Chris Mullin has been a Labour MP for twenty years and has held several prominent posts. He was for a time the only person appointed to Government who voted against the Iraq War. He also chaired the Home Affairs Select Committee, giving him direct access to the court of Tony Blair.

Before being elected as an MP, he was a journalist working for the Granada Television current affairs programme World in Action. His book Error of Judgment was pivotal in securing the release of the Birmingham Six.

Mullin is irreverent, wry and candid. He offers humorous and incisive takes on all aspects of political life: from the build-up to Iraq, to the scandalous sums of tax-payers’ money spent on ministerial cars he didn’t want to use. His diary is a joy to read.

Grace Maxwell

Friday January 15

The Black Box Café



Grace Maxwell: Falling & Laughing The Restoration of Edwyn Collins.

In February 2005, Edwyn Collins suffered two devastating brain haemorrhages. He then went on to contract MRSA as a result of an operation to his skull and spent six months in hospital.

He had lost all movement in his right side and was suffering from aphasia – an inability to use or understand language.

With the help of his partner Grace and their 18-year-old son Will, Edwyn fought back. Slowly, and with monumental effort, he began to teach his brain to read and speak all over again – with some areas of his mind it was if he had been a slate wiped utterly clean.

Through a long and arduous road of therapy he began to re-inhabit his body until he could walk again. Grace’s story is an intimate and inspiring account of what you do to survive when your husband is all but taken away without warning by a stroke.

Black Books

Sunday January 17

The Black Box

12noon – 5pm

Free entry

Inspired by the crafty resourcefulness of the Black Market and a cult tv-show about a dusty bookshop and a taciturn, alcoholic Irishman, trans in association with the Black Market, present a new, grass-roots book fair.

With a cacophony of stalls manned by book-sellers, zine writer’s and literary enthusiasts and an afternoon of word-based entertainment, Black Books is a revival and a celebration of the multiplicities of language and printed word.

Stalls will include new and second hand books, zines, rare books & antiquities, comic books, magazines, papers and children’s literature.

Come and enjoy a laid-back Sunday afternoon, and have a hoke through some dusty old books sitting side-by-side with cutting edge writing from both the local and international avant-garde.

Readings, spoken word performances, DIY publishing workshop and zine-related film screenings in the Black Box Café throughout the day.




ph. 02890-319601

fax. 02890319607


seana graham said...

Sounds like an intriguing lineup, and a great way to liven up a dreary January.

Paul D Brazill said...

Sounds like fun. At fisrt I thought it was about Ina Rankins 'Pie & a Pint'.

750 nicker!

Gerard Brennan said...

Seana, Paul - Weather permitting, I'll be there. Will let you know how it was soon after.