The Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival (CQAF) is an annual festival of music, comedy, theatre, art and literature that takes place in Belfast each May.
Founded in 1999, the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival has quickly established itself as one of the most vibrant and dynamic arts festivals on these islands with a broad-ranging programme that focuses on younger, less mainstream and less traditional arts attenders as well as music, comedy and literature fans from right across the social spectrum. Based in the city’s vibrant Cathedral Quarter, the Festival uses centrally located, accessible and often unorthodox venues to present events and performances in a way that is social, celebratory and enjoyable. The Festival has a strong commitment to providing a platform for local artists and arts organisations.
Since 2006, Out to Lunch has been a companion festival to Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival, running throughout the month of January. With the celebrated Black Box Venue as its principle home, Out to Lunch regularly attracts thousands of people into Belfast's city centre at a time of year which is traditionally known to be quiet. Creative approaches to programming and marketing, together with an extremely affordable pricing policy, means that the festival is both cutting-edge and enjoys a wide degree of community ownership.
Both CQAF and Out to Lunch feature carefully programmed film events. Last year, for example, we paired a screening of John Huston's The Dead with a sumptuous Christmas meal. We screened the Buster Keaton classic The General, performed with a live musical score by Haiku Salut, a folk/electronic trio from Derbyshire. And we held the Irish premiere of Being Frank, the documentary about Chris Sievey (aka Frank Sidebottom).