The Wirral Festival of Firsts 2016 will take place Saturday 9 – Saturday 23 July 2016 at various venues in and around West Wirral.
The Festival brings together artists, performers and musicians to celebrate the power and diversity of the Wirral art and music scene – whilst also helping raise money for local charity.
Festival of Firsts invites the public to
“Join-in” Community Celebrations – Meols, Hoylake, West Kirby
On each Saturday of this year’s Wirral Festival of Firsts, there will be a series of “join-in” day with lots of fun and activities for families and individuals and the public is warmly invited to join in.
Saturday 9th July 11.30am-2.30pm – A Children’s Festival day hosted by St John’s Church Meols with lots of activities, BarBQ, Punch & Judy, Arts and Crafts, stalls and open air musical performances, all in aid of Claire House. A special pop up theatre performance of Treasure Island for children will take place at 2.30pm (Tickets £2 for children, accompanying adults go free).
Saturday 16th July 12.00-4.00pm – Hoylake day! The fabulous Carnival Parade will move down Market Street to Queen’s Park at 2.00pm featuring the Wirral Pipe Band, Wirral Samba and representatives of many local sports. At Queen’s Park, the Friends of Queen’s Park and Hoylake & Meols in Bloom will host a fun-packed family day with music from the Peninsula Jazzmen as well as from the arriving parade bands. Activities will spill over into Parade Gardens where there will be a wonderful display of Art in the Parade Gardens and an open mic music performance hosted by Home Grown Bananas from West Kirby.
Saturday 23rd July 12.00-6.00pm – Summer Craft Fair at the Concourse, West Kirby
The popular craft fair organised by Wirral Arts Centre returns for a summer edition. Look out for local makers selling their wares, exciting artwork & a live stage of music and performance. Another . A special pop up theatre performance of Treasure Island for children will take place at 2.30pm (Tickets £2 for children, accompanying adults go free).
Community celebration and participation is an important feature and ethos of the Festival and there are lots of other “Join-in” activities and events, for example The Poetry Fair on Sunday 17th July at Hoylake Parade Community Centre welcomes all comers to its day of poetry and associated events with three open mic spots, book stalls, writing workshops and a range of activities for children including building a kaleidoscope and a children’s Poet Tree. West Kirby Arts Centre has workshops on Story telling on Sunday 10th July, and a special open mic event for young musicians on Friday 15th July.
Some 2016 Wirral Festival of Firsts events not to miss!
The Festival of Firsts proudly introduces the young and exciting music group Project Jam Sandwich (Wednesday 20th July), award-winning musicians from Manchester who play a dynamic mix of world, folk and fusion. From reels to rumba to reggae, expect beautiful melody, dizzying virtuosity, high-octane grooves and a tour-de-force of joy and performance. Whether you’re a hard-core folky, world music fan or simply curious, their eclectic approach means there is something for everyone and anyone.
Two contrasting poets also feature at this year’s Festival: Lemn Sissay with his amazing back story and even more amazing Landmark Poems which are installed throughout Manchester and London. Lemn Sissay gives a short performance on Sunday 17th July. The other poet is Elvis McGonagall, Stand-up Poet and comedian who is appearing with local wordsmith Clare Kirwan and the North West’s Lynn Gerrard at Hoylake Social Club on Saturday 23rd July
The Bibby Piano Duo return to the Festival after several years with a new and exciting programme at St Hildeburgh’s Church on Monday 11th July and Operation Lightfoot with Luke Moore, working with the Chester Poets hope to present a brand new performance piece inspired by the sights and history of a number of Wirral locations on Friday 22nd July.
Apart from these mouth-watering events, there are another 32 separate events during the two weeks of this year’s Festival of Firsts from 9th-23rd July, preceded by a number of lead-up events across the whole of Wirral from April – June. This year the Festival planning team is working with event partners like the West Kirby Arts Centre, Melrose Hall, Hoylake, Hoylake Community Cinema and the West Kirby and Hoylake Social Clubs to deliver a wide ranging programme featuring some of the best artistic talent from the Wirral and beyond. Many events are free.
Wirral Festival of Firsts creates a Razzle Dazzle “Joanna”!
Pianists! look out for the Wirral Festival of Firsts’ Razzle Dazzle Piano! The Festival invites everyone to tickle the ivories of their unique Razzle Dazzle “Joanna” as she moves around Wirral in the next few months.
The project to “razzle” a piano is led by artist Barb Singleton. The piano donated by Trevor and Sue Powell, is sponsored by Andrew Douglas of Newhall Publishing. The completed piano, an homage to Sir Peter Blake’s Razzle Dazzle Ferry, will soon appear in various places demanding to be played in aid of Claire House!