About Us

Festival of Fools is a jam-packed weekend of circus performances, featuring breathtaking acrobatics, gut-busting comedy and jaw-dropping juggling.

Come and spend your May Bank Holiday with us!

The 2 Men - Snap Happy Paparazzi (4)

The festival is the largest comedy and street theatre festival on the island of Ireland, with more than 100 performances due to take place on the streets of Belfast City Centre and Cathedral Quarter.

All shows are free to attend, and no booking is required.

Established in 2004, Festival of Fools has put Belfast firmly on the world map as a capital of street theatre and circus excellence.

The festival is the brainchild of the late Belfast Community Circus School Director Will Chamberlain, who believed passionately in the power of street theatre and laughter to bring people together regardless of background, religion or language. He established Festival of Fools in Cathedral Quarter in Belfast at a time when the area was a far cry from the bustling cultural centre it is today, leading the way in the regeneration of the north inner city.

Nowadays the Festival is a firm fixture on Northern Ireland’s cultural calendar, bringing thousands of visitors to Cathedral Quarter and the city centre.

We are hugely grateful to our sponsors and funders, particularly Arts Council Northern Ireland, Belfast City Council and the Ramada Encore Hotel.

Festival of Fools Management and Staff

Board of Trustees

Chair: Alison Anderson
Directors: Edward Adams | Julie Daly | Graham Erskine | Rob Lynas | Ciaran Traynor


Chief Executive: Jenna Hall
Director of Youth Circus: Paul Quate
Festival Producer: Georgia Simpson
Premiere Circus: Kirsty McReynolds Lunn
Administration Officer: Ellie Chamberlain

Northern Ireland Charity Number NI058177 | UK registered charity number XR98177

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