Search

Halesworth’s HighTide Festival hopes to build on successful year

10:04 29 May 2012

Steven Atkinson, founder-director of the HighTide Festival, Halesworth

Steven Atkinson, founder-director of the HighTide Festival, Halesworth

Archant

A celebration of playwrights and theatre has enjoyed a successful sixth instalment after a record attendance visited the Halesworth HighTide Festival.

Share this story

The annual festival returned to Halesworth bigger than ever before earlier this month, and after seeing a rise in visitors to the town, organisers are hoping it will continue to grow.

Steven Atkinson festival director said it was a great festival and he was delighted that audience numbers increased as the number of plays grew from four shows to 18.

Mr Atkinson said: “The risk this year was if we would see new people at the larger festival. If not it means we would not need to grow, but there were definitely more people.”

Particularly popular productions included a headphone play around Halesworth and a children’s show, while star names including Downton Abbey stars Brendan Coyle and Lesley Nichol, and Susan Brown, of Torchwood, proved popular, as 75 of the country’s top actors and actresses travelled to the town.

Mr Atkinson said: “I think we increased the our audience by a third, which is a few thousand people more over the 10 day period.

“There were lots of people new to the festival with young people travelling from London, and lots more local people particularly interested in Griff Rhys Jones and Juliet Stevenson.”

Among the hopes for next year will be bringing a South African theme to the town’s Rifle Hall, which this year welcomed most US productions.

Mr Atkinson said that next year’s festival will start on May 1, and he is hoping they might be able to extend it even further to three weeks.

The festival was extended from a long-weekend to a two-week showcase last year, but after becoming a national portfolio organisation of Arts Council England, was extended further this year.

Mr Atkinson has previously stated that he hopes that in 20 years the event would be known as the theatre version of the Aldeburgh Festival, which is renowned for classical music.

Share this story

0 comments

Other news

Yesterday, 06:38

Developers behind a large substation which will be built off the A47 have been encouraged by the response they have had from the public.

Thu, 11:22
Eric Seear with a photograph of his son Jack. Picture: Ian Burt

A heartbroken family are appealing for help to find a mobile phone containing the last cherished pictures of their son, who died of a brain tumour.

Wed, 06:30
The extension of the Better Broadband for Norfolk programme is welcomed at County Hall. From left, Karen O'Kane, the programme director; Marie Strong, Broadband Working Group chairman; George Nobbs, leader of the Norfolk County Council; Mark Pendlington, New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership chairman; and Bill Murphy, BT managing director for Next Generation. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

£17.9m extra funding will see 90% of properties in Norfolk get access to fibre-optic broadband.

Mon, 18:26
Heritage Lottery Fund has awarded Narborough Bone Mill a grant of £92,200. From left, Fred Munford, Emma Fendley, site owner Beryl Munford and Elaine Munford.

A mill owner’s dream to see the historic building restored is set to be realised in his memory.

Most Read

Thu, 11:22
Eric Seear with a photograph of his son Jack. Picture: Ian Burt

A heartbroken family are appealing for help to find a mobile phone containing the last cherished pictures of their son, who died of a brain tumour.

Read more
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
The aftermath of the A47 crash in which three people died. Picture: Matthew Usher.

The A47 has tonight re-opened after being closed for almost eight hours following a crash in which three people were killed.

Read more
Thu, 17:25
Norfolk Constabulary police vehicle. Picture: James Bass.

The A11 has re-opened in both directions between Snetterton and the A1075 following an earlier closure, but delays remain.

Read more
Friday, January 23, 2015
Breckland Council's Lynda Turner

They are the ordinary people who we pass every day without a second thought.

Read more
Saturday, January 17, 2015
Merle Boddy Centre in Swaffham, has been going for 30 years - Service user Jane Fleming doing some arts and craft with Jackie Longman (left). Picture: Matthew Usher.

“I can honestly say I’ve loved every single second I’ve worked here” – those were the words of a woman who has dedicated 25 years to helping people affected by mental health problems.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 3°C

min temp: -1°C

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Watton and Swaffham Times e-edition today E-edition