Body&Soul was fired up by a dedicated group of creative people all sharing a mutual love of art, music, performance and a good old-fashioned party.
Starting off as an idea, shaped and coloured by festivals like Burning Man in the Nevada Desert, Body&Soul carves an alternative world for artists, musicians and like-minded people to get together, to share ideas and stories that result in a unique and indescribable magic – an atmosphere so often lost in generic festivals and productions.
The festival has sold-out over the last seven years and has seen much critical success. We were voted ’Best Small Festival 2011′, with the 2010 festival winning both ‘Best New Festival’ and ‘Social Responsibility Award’ at the Irish Festival Awards. In 2016 we were awarded with a ‘Greener Festivals Award’ for our commitment to improving as a sustainable festival.
Body&Soul Festival takes place at Ballinlough Castle, Clonmellon, Co. Westmeath on the Summer Solstice Weekend, 2017.
Just one hour from Dublin, the festival is set across the stunning backdrop of Ballinlough Castle and its 300 acre estate including a private lake, surrounding woodlands and 15th Century walled gardens.
Dancing under the Stars. Sparkling Conversations in the Hot Tub. Gramophone Grooves. Acoustic Sessions. Marshmallows on a Bonfire. Pop-up Performances. Twinkling Pathways. Rejuvenating Massage. Disco Yurts. Moonlight Masquerade. Electronic Alcoves. Fireworks. Candlelit Spoken Word. Four-Poster Picnics. Flamboyant Spectaculars. Costumes. Teacups at Breakfast.
Body&Soul…a festival full of surprises.
Body&Soul is an arts & music festival where like-minded people come together for three days on the grounds of Ballinlough Castle in Co. Westmeath.
Here, they explore and discover new music, secret hideaways and glittering late night discos in the woodlands. There are inspirational art trails, spoken word and debate, a magnificent masquerade ball, culinary feasts, steaming hot tubs and seaweed baths and much, much more. It appeals as much to fans of electronic music as to nature lovers, families with young kids as well as 30 somethings that like the finer things in life. It’s a celebration for foodies, folkies, funksters and late night revellers alike, Body&Soul celebrates life in all its shapes and colours.
The festival is closely connected to the tradition of the Summer Solstice. This is a thousand year old celebration to honour the sun: for centuries, revellers have sparked roaring fires in unison, greeting the dawn on the year’s longest day, as it rises over the horizons to herald the beginning of summer.
We’re more about atmospheric engineering than main attractions and hype. We want our festival-goers to enjoy an “experience” rather than just a gig – we’re sustainability conscious, without being too-in-your-face; unique rather than boutique. We’re an independent festival with a heart-shaped mind and a cutting-edge soul.
“The idea that Body&Soul operates in another time zone is not that ridiculous…” – Irish Times
Across the bright canvas of Ballinlough’s Walled Gardens and Woodlands is a twisting labyrinth of cubby-holes and curious corners coloured with hanging pictures, spinning gramophones and a glittering collection of art pieces and installations. Wander to the dreamscape that is the Zen Gardens, relax, stretch and unwind in the chilled, lakeside cocoon. Meet acrobats, troubadours, belly dancers and drummers – all appearing and disappearing when you least expect it.
When the sun sets over the festival grounds, the night owls spread their feathers, emerging with a more mischievous energy and dreamt-up costumes. When the darker sounds of the evening begin, a veil of mischief falls on the night – wander down a lantern-lit path and find some moonlight tunes by a dream ship, gather round a bass-filled Speakeasy, order a tray of cocktails, get distracted by the trapeze artists or find yourself lost in a row of bubbling hot tubs under a canopy of trees…