Gap Day

Gap Day gives professional freelance theatre practitioners across the island of Ireland paid time to think, dream and plan. This year we're supporting 45 artists across the island - you can see who here.

A Gap Day enables directors, devisors/makers, writers, designers, production managers and creative producers to take time out and dedicate a day to the creative research and thinking they haven't been able to do lately. How they spend the day is up to them: reading, writing, thinking, drawing, walking, dreaming. Whatever they don’t normally have time to do; whatever they think is needed.

Gap Day has been led by Lian Bell and Mermaid since 2015, and supported over 150 artists to date.

Participants get

  • paid for their time taking Gap Days
  • a workspace at an arts centre or cultural building local to them for their Gap Day
  • an informal chat over a cup of tea with the director or senior member of staff in their host organisation
  • lunch on each Gap Day
  • access to monthly drop-in online gatherings
  • a small stipend to pay an Artist's Friend for a creative conversation
  • access to a fund to help people with additional needs get the most out of their Gap Day
  • access to small creative thinking gatherings in person across the country
  • access to one-to-one coaching to help them make plans and put their plans in motion.

How to Apply

Applications are now closed for 2022 but you can still read the FAQ document here if you’re interested in finding out more about the programme.

If you want to be kept up to date with Gap Day, follow us on Instagram and Twitter.


Are you interested in becoming a Gap Day host? Download the hosting information here.

‘It was so brilliant to have somewhere to work, to be, that was outside of my home. Felt part of the artistic community again and it gave me a huge sense of belonging. I felt important for the first time in two years. ’

Noelle Browne, actor/writer/director/facilitator, Dublin

‘It's an inspired programme… it has planted hundreds of creative seeds that will and have already grown and will continue to bear fruit for many artists…. I really believe creating the right conditions is all you have to do. Art and artists and connections and impulses and ideas and changing the world actions will all grow in the right conditions. ’

Emma O’Grady, theatre maker, Galway