THIS YEAR’S much-anticipated Bromsgrove Festival gets under way in the coming days with almost 20 events in the opening weekend alone.
A Song for the Festival takes place at Hanbury Hall Friday (June 17). The summer soiree, featuring Canto canto, festa festa – five unaccompanied singers and a narrator – begins at 7.30pm with a Pimms reception at 7pm in the great hall and a buffet and wine afterwards in the dining room. Tickets, which include the reception and buffet, are £20.
Also at 7.30pm Friday in the grounds of Hanbury Hall, there will be Chapterhouse Theatre Company’s outdoor performance of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Those who go along are urged to take along a picnic, blankets and chairs and tickets, at £15.75 per adult, £10 per child and £41.50 for a family, are available by calling 0844 2491895.
Fans of dance will have three events Saturday – the Bromsgrove Festival Day of Dance from 10am to 4pm will see countless performances in a variety of dance genres in the ‘event space’ by Bromsgrove’s Argos – from belly dancers, Bollywood, Banghra and street to Morris, Appalachian and contemporary. Then from 10am in the High Street, it will be the Schools’ Day of Dance organised by the New Generation Festival. That will see pupils from Catshill First and Middle Schools and dance teacher Hina Chavda present a short Bollywood dance piece and students from Parkside Middle School and North
Bromsgrove High will perform some contemporary dance. Pupils have been working with Artrix and Dancefest dance engagement worker Fi Hay.
Then from 8pm to 10pm next Saturday (June 18) there will be a Burlesque Evening at the Park Gate Inn. That is for adults only and, featuring a performance by Alloutta and friends fresh from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, admission is by a £1 wristband. Call 01527 576251 for more. There is also a Burlesque dance class from 3pm for those adults who want to give it a go.
Those wanting to get involved in the arts can take part in the first free Strumthing Amazing session from 10am to 4pm (tomorrow). Electric and acoustic guitars will be available on Bromsgrove High Street for people to pick up and show what they can do. There will be Strumthing Amazing sessions every Saturday for the next six weeks. They have been organised in conjunction with The Friends of St John’s Church.
For those who prefer visual art, the first Big Draw ‘Postcard from Bromsgrove’ session also takes place tomorrow (Saturday). Residents can drop into the library and draw on a postcard what they feel makes Bromsgrove such a great place to live, work, go to school in or visit. It is free to all ages.
There will be an Organ Recital at Bromsgrove’s All Saints Church next Saturday at 6pm, featuring a selection of organ music, including an arrangement of a Vivaldi Concerto by Bach among others. Tickets, including a drink, are £8 for adults and £4 for under 16s. For more, call 01527 873135.
An American Songbook sees Barnt Green Choral Society perform an evening of light-hearted music with an American theme at St Andrew’s Church in Barnt Green. Tickets, which include a buffet supper after the concert, are £10 for adults and £5 for under 16s – available by visiting
www.barntgreenchoralsociety.org.uk or by calling 0121 445 5513.
There will also be Classical Favourites by The Midland Sinfonia at St Laurence Church in Alvechurch, featuring music from Mozart, Haydn and Handel.
Tickets are £13 on the door or £12 in advance – by calling 0121 447 7040, from midlandsinfonia.co.uk or from The Village Grocer, Alvechurch.
The first ‘Music in the Park’, organised by Bromsgrove District Council, will see local choirs take to the Jubilee Bandstand in Sanders Park from 2pm to 4.30pm on Sunday. Among them will be the Primrose Choir, Music in Motion, Songstars, the WI and the Rock Choir.
A fantastic mix of music, puppetry, facts and fun comes to Artrix at 2pm on Sunday (June 19) when the Handmade Theatre presents its ‘Flying the Nest’. Tickets are £7 for adults and £5 for children.
There is a Jazz Spectacular with the Midland Youth Jazz Orchestra and special guest singer Clare Teale at Artrix at 7.30pm on Sunday night. Tickets for this stunning evening of entertainment are £22.50 (£20 for seniors and students).
A small exhibition entitled Building Stones takes place from Monday (June 20) to June 29 at Bromsgrove Library during the venue’s usual opening hours. It explains Bromsgrove’s distinctive stone and how it was formed and used, shedding light on the background to building stone, how it was quarried, transported and made ready for use on buildings. It has been compiled by the Herefordshire and Worcestershire Earth Heritage Trust and Worcestershire Libraries and Learning.
Also on Monday at 7.30pm at The Chapel in the Grafton Manor Hotel, there will be In Flanders Fields performed by Coope, Boyes and Simpson. The songs are a result of research, personal history and expert songwriting in response to stories from the First World War. Tickets, which include a glass of wine or a soft drink, are £15.
On Wednesday (June 22), there will be A Musical Cocktail with Papagena. This first Music at Lunchtime Concert of the festival takes place at midday at The New Guesten Hall, Avoncroft Museum.This a capella group explores a wealth of music from Medieval times to the present day written specifically for female voices. The group also draws on traditional folk music and women’s working songs from around the world. There will be lunch at 1pm. Tickets, including lunch and a glass of wine, are £15. They must be booked in advance on the Bromsgrove Festival website or by calling 01527 874136. Concert only tickets are £8 on the door. Visit www.festiveclassics.co.uk for more information.
There is also a live screening of Hamlet from the RSC at Artrix on Wednesday (June 22) at 7pm. Tickets are £15 or £13 for students and under 16s.
Go to www.bromsgrovefestival.co.uk for more on these events and others taking place between now and July 24.
Tickets for events at Artrix can also be booked at www.artrix.co.uk or by calling 01527 577330.