THE THREE-week Droitwich Spa ArtsFest gets under way next weekend with plenty of live entertainment and other activities for all ages and tastes.
Here are the details of the first few days of the festival which boasts live music, art, crafts, exhibitions, drama and poetry.
The official opening will be next Saturday, July 15, at midday when the Mayor of Droitwich Spa Coun Shaun Best and MP Nigel Huddleston take centre stage in St Andrews Square. The start will be announced by Town Crier Edgar Harwood.
Then at 12.15pm, also in St Andrews Square, there will be music from the county’s largest independent adult contemporary vocal group Worcester Voices Unlimited which has more than 100 members.
That performance will be closely followed in St Andrews Square by Swing 42 (UK) at 1.30pm.
Again a free event, it will showcase easy listening music, for shoppers, visitors and those enjoying a drink or food in the local cafes.
At 2.45pm Sing and Tonic will perform their set before the Droitwich Spa High School Music Showcase at 3pm and Swing 42 (UK) return at 3.30pm.
Prior to the official opening and first weekend, though not on the schedule, Droitwich Jazz Club will take to the stage at Gaudet Luce Golf Club. That will be held at 8pm on Tuesday, July 11.
And, likewise, The Mayor’s Summer Charity Concert in aid of St Richard’s Hospice and the Droitwich Challengers will take place at St Andrews Church. Among the performers are Droitwich Folk Club, Hussingtree Chorale, St Richard’s Choir, and Time Enough.
Tickets which are £5 (children free) are available from the Talbot Inn, Droitwich High Street.
Next Sunday, July 16, Bedworth Brass will perform a free concert at the bandstand in the Lido Park at 2.30pm.
There will then be Keith Slater’s Sinatra Celebrations at the St Andrews Town Hotel at 6.30pm next Sunday, July 16.
Tickets for that are £7 and are available from St Andrews Town Hotel or from Keith Slater on 01905 773605 or Rhys Jones on 07787 227390.
Alternatively, email email@example.com
A week on Monday, July 17, there will be a 300-year celebration of Handel’s Water Music.
The Canal and River Trust Community Work boat (the Wanderer) will travel the canal in Vines Park with Blackwell Concert Band playing Handel’s Water Music. This will be accompanied by the Droitwich Waterways (Pamela May) Trust Limited, Trip Boat carrying ten VIPs. On the canal bank, near the Waitrose swing bridge, will be a commentary on Handel’s work with play-acting.
It starts at 7.45pm and admission is free, although donations to St Richard’s Hospice would be welcome.
Here are some of the other highlights…..
Saturday, July 29 – The Meetbox, St Andrew’s Square.
Free Sketching Walks -10am and 2pm.Materials will be provided.
Free Photo Walks – 10.30am and 2.30pm . Any camera will do including phone cameras.
Sunday, July 30 – An Evening with Malcolm Stent -7pm – St Andrew’s Hotel
Malcolm shares stories about the back streets of Birmingham in the 50s & 60s.
Tickets £10. Tel: 07787 227 390
Monday, July 31 – Sacred Heart Mosaics – 7pm Church of the Sacred Heart
David Holden will lead those who go along on a guided tour of the mosaics, considered to be among the finest in England.
Thursday, August 3 – Droitwich Folk Club – 8pm Talbot Inn
Enjoy the friendly atmosphere at the regular meetings of the Droitwich Folk Club. Free entry. Cash bar.
Saturday, August 5 – Various events in Droitwich Town Centre
Acoustic Fingerstyle Workshop – 10am – Meetbox, St Andrew’s Square
Free workshop for “Improvers”. Bring a guitar and music stand. Call Mike Johns: 01905 772367 for more info.
Arts in View – 10.30am Victoria Square – See displays of work by members of Droitwich Arts Network (DAN) and talk to artists at work.
Mandy plays Sax – 2pm Victoria Square – Shoppers in St Andrew’s Square can listen to Mandy Harding playing saxophone.
Droitwich Community Choir – 3pm Victoria Square – The Choir performs songs from pop to rock, soul, gospel, and musicals. There will be something for all!
Kat Webber sings – 4pm Victoria Square – Kat performs her own work, inspired by the world around her. The world of politics and humans, and the world inside her head.
Friday, July 28 – August 5 – Droitwich Library Artists in Residence (when the Library is open)
Tuesday, August 1 to September 1 – Droitwich Library
Exhibition of MailArt and work by Droitwich Arts Network (DAN)
Visit http://droitwichartsfest.org/ for more on the Droitwich Spa ArtsFest, including dates, times and ticket prices.