Wymondham Music Festival Fortnight is launched

Moxy Garbanzo at the Wymondham Music Festival Fortnight.

Moxy Garbanzo at the Wymondham Music Festival Fortnight. - Credit: Archant

The popular Wymondham Music Festival Fortnight was launched with a stunning Around the World Music and Dance performance at the town's Abbey.

A large audience enjoyed Sokoshumba's African sounds and Moxy Garbanzo's Balkan tunes along with Indian, Bollywood and Flamenco dancing.

Dee Scholey, who organised the event on behalf of Wymondham Music Festival, said: 'We had a fantastic morning - the sun shone, we had a really good audience and were treated to some top class dance and music from around the world.

'It was a great way to launch Festival Fortnight.'

The festival makes its 19th visit to the town this summer, with the official launch in May.

At the launch, Wymondham Music Festival chairman Richard Elliott said: 'Soon we shall be converting months of planning into music – it's a really exciting time for everyone.'

Early events included a music lecture by Dr Kate Kennedy on Tuesday, June 3, entitled A Music of Grief, Classical Music and The First World War.

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The event, which was held at Fairland Church Centre, was supported by Rotary Club of Wymondham and Fairland United Reformed Church.

Dr Kennedy spoke about and played music by Ivor Gurney, FS Kelly, William Denis Browne and George Butterworth. All four fought in the First World War, with only Ivor Gurney surviving.

There was also a Town Busking Day supported by South Norfolk Council, which is held in the open air of Wymondham town centre every year to give people the chance to hear some of the area's up-and-coming musical talents for free while doing their shopping.

Barbara Randall, from the Wymondham Music Festival, said: 'Busking Day was very wet to begin with while we were putting up the tent.

'However, we had people from North Walsham and Cambridge, as well as people from Norwich and locally.

'We decided we wouldn't take the tent down until 2pm but in fact people carried on playing until 4pm. It was a really, really good day.'

The main Festival Fortnight - two weeks jam-packed with ticketed performances, family events and workshops - will run funtil July 6.

More than 70 events means that festivalgoers will be able to take their pick from a variety of local, regional and national musicians, with a mix of swing, jazz, folk and African music.

Ticketed events will include a performance by the Wymondham Young Musicians' Concert on Monday, June 30 and a piano recital by the Goldman Ensemble on Wednesday, July 2.

In its early days nearly 20 years ago, the festival only ran for a week and was intended to be an outlet for local musicians.

Now, organisers estimate that 2,000 guests flock to the ticketed events.

Tickets for Festival Fortnight concerts are available from Puff's Toyshop, Wymondham Market Place, or at www.wymfestival.org.uk

For information call 01953 333500.

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