Festival of the Arts

Preparations for the inaugural Festival of the Arts are drawing on apace – the Planning Committee has been working extremely hard to finalise flyers and programmes and confirming final details with the event organisers. Looking at our calendar, we have such a wide and varied programme. From photography, poetry and film, to dance, theatre and comedy, musical events and operatic performances, there’s so much on offer between 30th May and 15th June.

It’s been great to see tickets for the Night at the Movies going so quickly – this event promises to be a real musical treat for Durham and a fantastic launch night for Music Durham, the DSO incarnation of DUMS, and the Festival of the Arts on 30th May. Music from films such as Swing Time, Frozen, The Lion King, The Great Escape, Harry Potter, Carousel, Mary Poppins and Les Misérables will be performed in the wonderful surrounding of the Cathedral. I’d recommend booking now to avoid disappointment!

A particular highlight for me is the Intercollegiate Chapel Choirs Joint Evensong on 1st June at 5.15pm in the Cathedral, which will be the very first time that the chapel choirs of Grey, Hatfield, St Chad’s, St Hild and St Bede, St John’s, St Mary’s and University Colleges and St Cuthbert’s Society will join together to lead a service. There will be around 150 singers so, whether you’ve never attended an evensong before or you go regularly, it will be a service of epic proportions. It’s also being conducted by James Lancelot, the Master of the Choristers at the Cathedral, which will add further prestige to the event.

The Festival ends with Orchestral Society’s Fiftieth Anniversary Concert with Sir Thomas Allen, our Chancellor, performing – among other items – a world premiere written by John Casken. Likewise, this is in the cathedral and should be a fantastic opportunity for audiences in Durham to hear a world-class performance. Calendar_Page_2