SCORES of groups and organisations of every kind have united to get behind the Festival of Chichester which today (April 16) announces a glittering programme for its month-long summer arts and community extravaganza.
After an impressive debut last summer, the festival’s organising committee has built on all the strengths to produce an even-stronger programme this year.
Starting on June 14 and running through until July 13, the festival – strongly supported by the Observer – boasts around 200 events, the vast majority of which take Chichester itself as their inspiration.
High-profile performers including Julian Lloyd Webber and Eliza Carthy are on the bill, but the festival committee has upheld the festival’s founding principle, that it is the talents of the people of Chichester and the surrounding area that they want to showcase.
The programme boasts a particularly-strong classical music section, but also revels in jazz, blues, rock and roots.
An extensive spoken word section will celebrate literature in all its forms, boosted by a range of thought-provoking speakers.
Festival chairman Phil Hewitt said: “We are delighted to launch the programme this Saturday on the Cathedral Green from 2pm.
“We have a range of entertainments lined up for you, and we hope you will pop along to grab a brochure and hear about our plans for the summer. We have always had a close relationship with the cathedral and are grateful to them for hosting us.”
Festival co-ordinator Barry Smith said he was thrilled at the way the entire community had got behind the second Festival of Chichester, with plenty of other notable performers travelling to the city to add their lustre to proceedings.
“We have had great fun putting the festival together, and it has been great to see so many people come up with such original and exciting events for us. After the launch, we will be getting the brochures out to as many key outlets as possible. including Waterstones and the tourist information centre.”
Pictured front clockwise from bottom left: Shawn Cuddy, Benjamin Wolf and Alison Holford, Tobiah, Dawn Gracie, Julian Lloyd Webber, Eliza Carthy, Glyn Maxwell, Zanubia – Early Arab Christian Chants, Helen Dunmore, Young-Choon Park and Songs Of Bohemian Life.
Tickets from Chichester Tickets, Cloisters Shop, Cathedral Cloisters; www.chichestertickets.co.uk or 01243 813595.