Friends & Sponsors

Youghal: The Home of First Cut!

Youghal, the most easterly town in Co. Cork, is known to be a gem in Ireland’s Ancient East. It is also the home of First Cut! Youth Film Festival. This beautiful seaside town, packed with historical interest, has been host to the festival since 2014. In that time, it has become far more than just a festival venue – it is part of the very fabric of First Cut! The massive support from Youghal audiences and the hugely generous local business sponsorship that the festival receives year after year is matched only by the consistent participation of Youghal’s wonderful young people as volunteers, festival goers and, in many cases, budding filmmakers. This is the grassroots lifeblood of First Cut!

Youghal || Drone footage || DJI Phantom 4 by James Mc Carthy

The Festival has been based in two main Youghal venues:

The Mall Arts Centre

The Mall Arts Centre is a spectacularly sited 230-year-old riverside arts venue. The first floor performance area in Youghal’s historic town hall has been completely renovated as a multi-purpose theatre and arts venue. The stage and performance area can be adapted to a number of uses including film, theatre performance, dance, concerts, readings, exhibitions, workshops and public meetings. For further information please visit:

The Regal Cinema

The Regal Cinema opened its doors in the summer of 1936. The first film shown at the cinema was the Irving Berlin musical Top Hat, starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. The Regal has been an integral part of the East Cork community since its opening and many locals have spent time working there. It has recently undergone an extensive transformation. The new owners have worked hard to retain as much of the existing heritage and history of the cinema throughout the works while adding modern comforts and facilities. The cinema is of huge importance to the people of Youghal.

And to find out more about Youghal, please visit This website contains a wealth of information about accommodation, dining and other activities for visitors.

Best Friends of the Festival 2021

A big thank you to the advertisers in our 2021 festival brochure – you are our besties!

Thank You

A very special thank you to our main funders The Arts Council of Ireland and Cork County Council, to Cork Education and Training Board, and to our ‘Animania’ sponsors Youghal Credit Union. A sincere thank you to everyone who helps make First Cut! happen.

First Cut! Youth Advisory Council

Huge gratitude to the wonderful Youth Advisory Council for their precious time, energy and ideas. The 2021 Council members are: Emma Caplice, Katelynn Cremin, Aislinn Cuffe, Muireann Forde, Charlotte Galvin, Liam Harte, Michael Keane, Gearóid Murphy, Liam O’Leary, Rosa O Sullivan and Ambrose Wall Thompson.

The First Cut! Team

Mary McGrath – Festival Director/Producer; Max Le Cain – Programmer; Jessica Bonenfant Coogan – Animation Programme Coordinator; Vicky Langan – YMVC Coordinator; Ellen Whelan – Administrator; Emer Casey – Social Media Manager; Tara Murphy – Festival Strategy Consultant; Ger Browne – Programme Consultant; Chris Hurley – Technical Consultant.


Everybody involved in this not-for-profit festival volunteers valuable time and energy to make it happen. Thank you!

For enquiries or to become a Friend of the Festival:

T: +353 86 813 9019 E:

First Cut! Trustees

Pascal Scott (Festival Patron), Linda Curtin, John McCarthy, Kate O’Connor, Toirdealbhach Ó Lionáird.

First Cut! Youth Film Festival is a registered charity CHY NO: 20106652