You wait six months for a festival and then two come at once!
The DLR Festival of World Cultures is on this weekend (23rd to 25th) in Dunlaoghaire. Its possibly the best free event in Dublin, with a great vibe in the area, and a huge amount to see and do, most of it for free. The headline events include Anima, , the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble among many others. The bigger names are generally pay events, but there’s enough going on, so just go out and have a wander, if you get the chance.
Galways arts festival takes place over a slightly longer period, the 12 to the 25th. There’s a good selection of things going on. In theatre, there’s the bristol old vic’s version of Uncle Vanya, Penelope by Druid and a few others. The visual art section is pretty strong with pieces by Spike Jonze, Alice Maher and Bill Viola. From a music perspective, its pretty weak, with only the ubiquitous Divine Comedy and Josh Ritter being of any real interest.