Performing Arts Open Call


Westival invites companies and performance artists wishing to be considered for presentation in this year's festival to submit their proposal. Westival takes place from the 21st - 26th of October, 2020 with the main performance events taking place across the October Bank Holiday weekend. This year, we need to radically rethink how we present performance art and hope to have a hybrid festival with audiences with a reduced capacity and online streams. Please keep this in mind while submitting your proposal.

Each year Westival presents an eclectic programme of music, literary, street spectacle, theatre and family events that engage and enthral a broad audience. This year we see it as more important than ever to bring inspiration and light to our community through the Arts. We are looking for artists and event ideas that will re-ignite our community and keep Westport burning bright. 

Please make sure to fully read our FAQ below before you submit your proposal. Please note that this application is for performing arts only. Sign up to our mailing list to stay informed.

The closing date for applications was July 10th, 2020 at 6pm.

WESTIVAL 2020 | Performing Arts Open Call | FAQ

Application closing date July 10th at 6 pm.

Festival Dates 21st - 26th, October 2020.


Some successful applicants from our 2019 Open Call...

Be bold and ambitions with your ideas. We are looking for something a little different, innovative, and engaging whether online or off. 

Feedback + Selection

Please be aware that, due to the volume of submissions received, we cannot respond or offer assessment and feedback to every submission individually. We will acknowledge receipt of your proposal once submitted. All submissions will be reviewed and if you are successful we will be in touch.

Please note that Westival is not a funding body, it is a non-for-profit organisation which raises income from ticket sales, public sector grants, sponsorship and fundraising. We hope to include as many artistic proposals as possible with the funding we have obtained. 

Applicants will hear from us by the first week in September. 

What We Are Interested In

  • We love to hear ideas that cover all art forms, pop-ups or happenings. Proposals can include; music, theatre, performance art, food, literature, spoken word, comedy, debates, talks, workshops, discussions, dance, street spectacle, site-specific happenings, dance, design, architecture, circus, cabaret, storytelling – this list is not exhaustive so don’t feel like you have to fit into any particular category. If you’re excited about joining Westival 2020 and your idea wows us, that’s a great start!
  • This year we are operating on reduced audience capacity and within government health guidelines. We are very interested in hearing from artists who are creating new online work or who's performance is manageable in spaces where social distancing is achievable.
  • We love to hear from art collectives from all disciplines.
  • Diversity excites us and we want to hear from all nationalities, languages, ages, sexual orientation, cultural backgrounds, and religions. 

What We Consider in Your Assessment

  • Originality is important, and the quality of your proposal counts. We want your event to artistically enhance the festival and enrich our audience’s experience.
  • Feasibility of your proposal. We need to see that your project can be produced safely, on time and on budget, and we will prioritise proposals which demonstrate experience in producing and realising events or the activities you propose to deliver. Your proposal should also include an indication of the fees and costs involved (see below).
  • The target age-group or audience type for your event.
  • Your ability to assist in the marketing & PR of your event to support the main festivals marketing team. This is particularly important with events depending on box-office ticket sales.
  • Venue sourcing or art form distribution. Ideally, your proposal should either already have a specific venue in mind or have adapted your performance for online with new ways to engage audiences safely. 
  • How the proposal fits into our overall Westival Programme. We already have some events confirmed so if your proposal duplicates other elements of our programme it may not be considered.

Budget / Funding Award

  • The total funding award will be at the discretion of the artistic director and programming team.
  • Please include an indicative budget for your proposed activity including all artist fees and additional costs.
  • We will consider a box office split where appropriate. Our venues have reduced capacity with social distancing measures. Bear this in mind when proposing your budget.
  • Any budget overspend is the responsibility of the applicant.

Eligibility Criteria

  • We will be constantly reviewing government health guidelines but sadly we will not be considering large scale indoor events for Westival this year.
  • If you are employing a team of people to deliver your event, please note that employer’s liability is the applicant’s responsibility - proof of insurance will be required as part of your supporting documentation should you be selected.
  • If your activity involves your direct contact with children or vulnerable adults, you will need to show that you have been Garda vetted for the purpose.

Offered to Successful Proposals

  • Your artist's fee. We believe in fair and equitable remuneration of all artists throughout our programme of events.
  • Your event or activity will be marketed and published as part of the overall Westival 2020 programme which will be released in mid Sept 2020.
  • The inclusion of your event/activity in the official printed programme and website.
  • We endeavour to secure media profile for the festival and its artists. Depending on the scale of the event you have proposed, we may require that you be available for interview.
  • Box office facilities. Ticketed events will be sold through the Westival box office online, in person or by phone.

How to Apply

  • The deadline for submissions is July 10th, 2020.
  • We cannot accept postal, by phone or face to face applications.
  • If you have any access needs relating to the application please contact us here.