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Hebden Bridge Arts Festival

hit the sunny streets of Hebden

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Come and join the carnival!
Summer starts here!

The recent floods have served to fuel the fire rather than dampen the spirits in Hebden Bridge. Although our beautiful shops, streets and houses have taken a bit of a battering, Carnival season is upon us and we extend a warm Yorkshire welcome.

Saturday 30 June kicks off with the spectacular Handmade Parade strutting its funky stuff though town from 11am. At high noon, the 19th Hebden Bridge Arts Festival springs into life with a dance-x-travaganza. Watch performances by the best movers in the region on imove’s touring stage and enjoy impromptu dance battles, dazzling athletics and infectious rhythm. Famous for their cheeky good humour, the crowd-pleasing ponydance lead the way on the main stage, joined by ace Sheffield breakdancers Rationale, circus antics from So & So, DankDance’s Lindy Nsingo and  Yorkshire Dance Associate Dancer Jordan Massarella with ‘Visitors’ happening all across town! 

Jordan Massarella

Jordan Massarella

Highlights of this year’s festival include the Inspiral Carpets with their original line up, top funny man Stewart Lee with his Carpet Remnants tour, travelling Matisse show ‘Drawing with Scissors, funky folk icon Julie Felix, bestsellers Kate Summerscale, Jane Green and Jon McGregor and a singer/songwriter session climaxing with a performance from Becky Unthank.

Out on the street, Granny Turismo will be haring through the town on motorised shopping trolleys, you’ll be able to travel into space 1970s style in the Astronauts Caravan, climb into Mimika’s magical theatre tent for a journey through Small Worlds and Landscapes or poke about in some of the most extraordinary gardens in the region.

Wakefield bad lads, Skint & Demoralised and Razing Eddie ride into town and the world’s most famous spinster gets her revenge in Miss Havisham’s Expectations. Guardian columnist Gaby Hinsliff chucks it all in for quality of life in Half a Wife and ex cons turned true crime writers  Erwin James and Noel ‘the razor’ Smith explain how they wrote themselves out of jail. Five sensational new writers take us on their journey to publication and we hold our very own Poetry Parnassus. Six poets travel from Tuvalu, Singapore, Burma, Cameroon, Armenia and Spain, via the Southbank Centre in London, to perform in  Hebden Bridge. The six converge in our valley as part of the Cultural Olympiad. There’s also a Fringe Festival jam-packed with extraordinary local performers.

Found in Hebden

Look out across town for 16 remarkable poster poems designed by 1st year design students from Bradford college featuring poems written by local poets. Also watch out for our pop up poet who will be ‘popping Up’ at events and locations throughout the 2012 festival. His project, Found in Hebden will involve a range of experiments in found poetry. Harvesting words form the people of Calderdale and visitors to the festival and from them creating his own work. You can follow his progress online at www.hbaf.co.uk.

Also keep your eye out for some extraordinary artworks in shop windows throughout town. Year 6 pupils from Riverside, Hebden Royd, Old Town and Heptonstall have  worked with local community artist Jude Wadley to make sculptures together, inspired by the work of artist Antony Gormley. See their work on display around the town centre.

‘Hebden Bridge is an extraordinary town at the best of times but the way the town has rallied this last week has proved the point unequivocally. In spite of the recent setbacks 2012 is shaping up to be a bumper year for Hebden Bridge with the new Town Hall development, the Picture House under new ownership and the Trades Club a finalist in the NME ‘Best Small Venue of the year Award’. And it’s the annual Arts Festival that brings all of this together every year under its diverse and colourful banner. Each year performers from all over the UK descend on our beautiful Pennine town and perform in our historic streets and venues come hell or high water.’ Helen Meller, Hebden Bridge Arts festival Coordinator, 2012 


For more information or to book tickets visit www.hbaf.co.uk or call in to the box office in Albert Street.


See also: Hebden Bridge Fringe Festival


See also

  • HebWeb News: The girls are back in town! (20 June)
  • HebWeb News: Festival Box Office opens Saturday 16th June
  • HebWeb News: Dance weekend to kick off Arts festival
  • HebWeb News: Festival Programme launched: Matisse and Stewart Lee headline
  • HebWeb News: Hebden Bridge Fringe Programme launched
  • HebWeb News: Countdown to Arts Festival


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