Awhile with Seamus Heaney

Spoken Word (drama, poetry)

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  • Accessibility:
    Sight not needed
    May not apply to all performances. You'll find more information about accessibile performances and how to book tickets in the accessibility tab below.
  • Babes in arms policy: Babies do not require a ticket
  • Policy applies to: Children under 2 years


A heartfelt tribute to Ireland's late Nobel poet by award-winning Ulster actor-director Larry McCluskey. The poems are set within a frame of live music and critical and, at times, humorous commentary by an actor who knows the Ulster landscape. The performance covers the poet's life and work from his Derry childhood, through his Belfast formation and national and international eminence, to his Nobel Prize in 1995. Heaney was not just a colossus in world literature, he was an important public figure, literary critic and wise commentator in Ireland's difficult journey to a delicate peace process.

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General venue access

  • Sight not needed
  • Accessible entry: Information not supplied
  • Wheelchair access type: Building Lift

  • Stairs: 20+
    Number of stairs is provided as guidance and is not in addition to any wheelchair access type (lift/ramp etc) stated above.

Each venue can contain several space with different accessibly information. Visit the venue page for full venue accessibility info

How and when to make an access booking

Our access tickets service is available to anyone who:

  • Would like to book specific accessibility services, e.g. a hearing loop, audio description headsets, captioning units, seating in relation to the location of the BSL interpreter
  • Requires extra assistance when at a venue
  • Has specific seating requirements
  • Is a wheelchair user
  • Requires a complimentary personal assistant ticket to attend a performance

John Russell 87 days ago

Larry read movingly, played sublime harmonica, and provided a thought provoking lookback, emotionally fulfilling, at this great man's life and work. Conscious of EdFest's 70 minute rule, at times Larry was a tad note-focused, so as to be sure to get it all read. A small adjustment to make his listeners feel included, eye contact every now and then, stagecraft, would've made an already sublime effort something extra special. But it was no thole, and I was privileged to have heard his wonderful reading and reflection. 4 ****

Ifty Finn 89 days ago

Thoroughly enjoyable, can’t recommend highly enough. Go see

Jo Finn 89 days ago

Five stars and not to be missed! An outstanding tour de force through Heaney and his work. We were moved to tears and how wonderful to hear the voices Heaney wrote spoken in their local accent!

Robert Harper 90 days ago

A sensitive and highly informative journey through the life and work of one of the truly great Irish poets. Larry McCluskey is an accomplished guide on the travels from Mossbawn to Harvard and Oxford via Belfast, Wicklow and many other places, with the ever present certainty of returning to the homeplace.

This is a journey well worth taking for the pleasure it gives in the poetry and in the man who created it and well as for the resonances which Heaney’s writing has for Ireland today.

A must-see show.

Ruari Wilson 91 days ago

Booked on spec - having heard of the poet. Spellbinding readings that captivated me - interspersed with reflections on Seamus Heaney's life. Will head off to my library for a book of his poems. The performer made an intimate connection with his appreciative audience.

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Edinburgh Reporter (3/5 stars) 82 days ago

McCluskey delivers Heaney’s story at such speed and with such energy that for a while I just let his wonderful voice wash over me. Within a few minutes, he has you in the zone; you are there in Mossbawn, the family home, ‘a one story, lowish, longish, whitewashed house’, where the railway has ‘a big presence’, and from where Heaney took images that lasted his whole life.

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Participants - for further details on our audience and published review policies, including how to add or opt out of reviews, please click here.