Holt Festival first Highlights

Now in its eleventh year, it’s one of the East of England’s most anticipated events. Each July the festival sets the charming North Norfolk Georgian country town alight with performers, musicians, art exhibitions and literary events. Local audiences and cultural tourists flock to the town to enjoy the delights on offer.

Punk princess Toyah is well known these days for her TV, film and theatre acting, but it is her music that takes centre-stage in Holt. This year is her 40th as a top music draw and she’s bringing her full electric band for a special show marking that momentous achievement.

Georgie Fame holds the rare position of being both a popular household name and a respected musician’s musician. His Holt show is one of a very select number of UK tour dates. A true music legend, Georgie’s impressive array of hit singles include the number 1’s Yeh Yeh, Get Away and The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde.

Music legends of a very different type are the Britten Oboe Quartet. Appearing at the Auden Theatre on Thursday 25 July, they will perform standard classics such as Mozart’s oboe quartet alongside lesser-known works from Britain (including Norfolk educated composer EJ Moeran’s Fantasy Quartet) and abroad.

Stars from the eastern region are also a feature of the festival. Poet and theatre-maker Luke Wright is celebrating the 20th anniversary of his first ever gig with an extensive national tour of his show Luke Wright, Poet Laureate. Completing the line up is poet, raconteur and TV and radio scriptwriter Molly Naylor whose verse manages to celebrate humanity whilst despairing of its ugly bits.

Author’s talks are always a popular part of the festival bill and the first to be announced is international best selling novelist Kate Mosse. In conversation with Kate Roma she will talk about her life and work, including Labyrinthand The Burning Chambers, the first in a new sequence of historical novels.

Musical comedy sisters Flo & Joan are very unique talents. The Radio 4 regulars are bringing a brand-new show of dark, witty songs Alive on Stage to Holt. Perpetrators of viral hit song The 2016 Song (which received over 50 million views online) they’re like a mash-up up of Flanders & Swann, Flight of the Concords and Garfunkel & Oates.

Anwen said ‘I think we’re giving just a taste of the range, depth and variety that will be on offer when we announce the full line up at the end of April. With MOBO and Fringe First award winners in the line up, big names like Toyah, Kate Mosse and Georgie Fame alongside performers from the region making a name for themselves on the national stage I think we are on the right track. It’s been a pleasure to programme these wonderful artists and I’m delighted to say there are even more to come!’

The 2019 Holt Festival runs from 21 – 27 July. The full programme will be announced in late April. For full details of the programme, updates and how to become a Friend, Ambassador or Sponsor of the festival visit www.holtfestival.org