Graffham Festival got under way at the weekend with a packed programme of art, music and literature.

Beached
Beached

Festival spokeswoman Diana Bowden said: “Alongside old favourites like Richard Bailey’s organ recital and jazz evening, were a series of exciting new events designed to inspire the whole family to get creative.

“This included an avant-garde puppet show ‘Beached’ that told the tale of curmudgeonly Arnold whose walk quickly became an adventure. The soundtrack was played on earphones for each audience member, creating a little world to share at the table. This proved a huge hit for visitors young and old – with some children returning to watch the 10 minute production more than 3 times during the evening!

“Participation is a big element of this year’s festival and the festival’s first workshops happened on Sunday: fabulous art classes for local children aged 3 – 5 and 6 -11, which saw the younger group learning how to paint with their whole bodies, much to the amusement of the children as well as all the parents and grand-parents who were watching!

“The workshops were run by professional artists Sue Hill and Dominique Ken way – both of whom are exhibiting in the open studios art trail that runs from Thursday 21st to Sunday 24th July. The trail is the centrepiece of the festival and will showcase the work of around 20 painters, potters, sculptors and craftsmen in 9 venues around the village. It will also give fans of prime time BBC arts shows ‘The Great Pottery Throw Down’ and ‘Show Me The Monet’ the chance to see Jo Morris and Richard Davidson’s work in person.”

Festival organiser Jim Kirke said “We’re thrilled to have had such a strong start to the festival – with fantastic performances and a good turn out – we even managed to lay on the sunshine! There’s still lots more to come over the next week – highlights include a concert from local top 40 artist Ben Pryer (Thursday 21st), a fun and acrobatic dance workshop with Joli Vyann (Friday 22nd) and a steel pan and percussion workshop and performance from Worthing Steel Band at the village feast on Saturday 23rd.”

Visit the festival website: www.graffhamfestival.co.uk to find out more and book your tickets.

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