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2020 FESTIVAL 2nd, 12th to 22nd FEBRUARY 2020

Our 131st Festival concluded with the Last Night Concert on the 22nd February 2020. Feedback on the night and since has been very encouraging with suggestions that it was ‘the best yet’ and ‘unbelievably high standard’. During the whole festival we continually received comments on the very high standard of performance of all age groups taking part from Adjudicators, Performers and Audience. The suggestion being that the quality of performers attracted by our festival is now markedly higher than competitor festivals and very encouraging as that outcome is part of our plan. People are also noticing that we are attracting performers from a wider geographic area. London, Peterborough, Guernsey, Edinburgh, Lancaster, Wolverhampton, Manchester, and Ely performers were attracted to Huddersfield Town Hall and love the venue. Again, part of our strategy which is to continually develop the festival.

Other highlights being: -

  • ‘Proms Workshop’. 130+ people made up our ‘scratch’ choir and were joined by the Musica Kirklees Orchestra to give a very well received concert.
  • ‘I got Rhythm Children’s Workshop and Concert’, with Musica Kirklees. 850+ children had an amazing time at the Workshop with 300+ returning in the evening to perform in a sold-out Concert Hall.
  • ‘Special Needs Workshop’, with the Dark Horse Theatre. The theme this year being ‘Alice in Wonderland’ created joy for children from 6 Special Needs Schools who attended. It is amazing the power of music and dance has to create smiles.
  • ‘Music for the Brain Tea Dance’, in conjunction with The Alzheimer’s Society was a huge success. 70 people and supporters attended and sang and danced to musicians from Musica Kirklees. An added highlight this year being a ‘surprise’ appearance by The Lindley Junior Choir. Quite magical which created special moments for the children and old alike.
  • ‘Young Musician of the Year’ for 2020 is flautist Angel Pareja-Francisco. This is the first year that the competition has been opened to the whole of the UK and was a success in geographic spread, quantity and quality of performers attracted.

We now move on to planning the 132nd Festival. There is no time to be lost. The Town Hall is booked as are the Adjudicators. Special events already determined and ideas to further develop the festival under discussion.

We are moving forward.

Our aim ‘to promote education and development within the arts for the benefit of the community’ remains as valid now as when it was written 131 years ago. It could be argued that our aims are even more relevant in modern times when opportunities for performance and development are becoming increasingly scarce.

Our work could not take place without the continuing support of our sponsors to whom we are indebted.

Contact details and further information can be obtained by visiting www.mrssunderlandfestival.com

 

Ray Brown

Chairman

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