OPINION: There’s a lot to celebrate in our summer season programme - Harrogate International Festival’s Sharon Canavar

It’s been a funny few weeks!

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 26th May 2022, 3:15 pm

A little bit of running to catch up as we put the final touches to the programmes for the summer season, worrying about affordability of tickets, making sure we get the balance of music just right, and trying to source the perfect venue for a particular artist, particularly when it seems venues are in short supply, as everyone is having their wedding this July after having to cancel for the last couple of years!

We’ve really focused on young musicians, talent and performers in this year’s classical music programme.

Rising stars from around the world will be landing in town this July having won a clutch of international awards and hoping to wow our Harrogate audiences with their prowess.

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Meanwhile, our debut authors panel, New Blood, is probably one of the most hotly contested events of the year, with Val McDermid’s annual picks often going on to become bestselling authors after the spectacular springboard of the Harrogate Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival stage.

At the other end of the cycle is the volume of celebratory anniversaries across the season this year; from the 40th anniversary of the Hacienda in Manchester as we welcome Graeme Park to the Spiegeltent, to exploring how representation has changed in crime fiction as we mark 50 years since the first Pride March in England.

More golden anniversaries are to be celebrated with the Brodsky Quartet in our opening gala concert, and of course a very special celebration of music to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee of the world’s longest reigning Monarch, as the Armonico Consort recreate the highlights of the Coronation Service of Queen Elizabeth II in a unique concert performance hosted by ITV news anchor Nicholas Owen.

There’s familiar favourites as Oddsocks present their fabulous capers at Harlow Carr with Hamlet... The Comedy, a host of free lunchtime events in the Spiegeltent, and the Carnival will make its return to town as a grand finale to the whole season.

It’s fair to say there’s a lot to celebrate in the programme, from young musicians and writers at the very start of their careers, to celebratory events marking one’s journey in life, to a host of fun with our free family and community events across the month.

We’re looking forward to a fantastic summer and as the huge green chairs land at HIF HQ, and the body outlines pop up around the town, we hope you manage to enjoy a little bit of music, reading or fun across the summer.