Countdown to Barry Arts Festival 2013

Four weeks today will see the start of the 2nd Barry Arts Festival – and this one promises more events, more venues, more involvement from the Barry community than last year. And BAF12 was a great success, so we’re in for a treat next month!

The festival will be officially opened by Dai Smith, Chair of the Arts Council of Wales on Friday 24th May at Art Central, King Square. Our BAF Patron, Gillian Clarke, National Poet of Wales, cannot be with us but has endorsed the festival – read her words on the programme which will be available in a few days.

So, ten days which will be a riot of music, art, theatre, poetry, philosophy, family activities, talks, writing, community projects, exhibitions and workshops – it’s all there, and you’ll be spoiled for choice. You don’t need to get in your car, catch a train, go to Cardiff… it’s all going to be happening in Barry! This only happens once a year, so make sure you go to as many events as you possibly can.

Tickets will be available online on this website, and at our festival shop on Holton Road (previously Blockbusters, opposite Barclays Bank). Some events are free – but you will be required to book a place as seats are limited. All details will be in the programme and at the festival shop.

This festival shop – Arts Off-centre – will be hosting exhibitions, workshops and other events throughout the festival – and for a couple of weeks before. So drop in and have a chat, pick up programmes, buy tickets, put your name down for workshops, wander round the gallery and get in festival mood!

As well as the community projects which have been reported here before – have you noticed the yarn-bombed trees on King Square?! – there are other events which have taken some planning and are in the (maybe) final stages of preparation.

I’ve heard that ‘Confusions’ the Alan Ayckbourn play being staged by Pukka Productions is causing lots of giggles, and weeping of the laughter kind, at rehearsals. It’s on Tuesday 28th May.

‘Augustus, Gwen and Nina’ – a new play about the lives and loves of three famous Welsh artists is in rehearsal under the direction of Hilary Fifer, with an experienced cast. Writer Tony Curtis is looking forward eagerly to its premiere at BAF13. It’s on Thursday 30th May.

The community projects will be exhibited at Art Central from Saturday 18th May , for two weeks, until Saturday 1st June. One of the projects, the community wallhanging of over 20 beautiful textile pieces made by women all over Barry (and beyond) is now being assembled by a team of wonderful ladies from the St Francis Quilters, and we are grateful to Palmerston Community Centre for giving us the space to do this. I love it when the community rallies round like this! Jane Hutt AM will present the wallhanging to ValePlus on Saturday 18th – it promises to be a beautiful piece of artwork.

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