Holme Valley residents are being invited to roll up for a spectacular circus-themed parade to launch Holmfirth Arts Festival in June.
The Creature Carnival – a parade of floats, giant puppets and participants in animal masks – will wind through the town on Saturday, June 18. Organisers are now putting out a call for those who’d like to take part.
“We would love as many individuals, families, bands, dancers and performers as possible to get involved,” says festival director Fiona Goh.
While groups and organisations can plan their own floats, costumes and masks, the festival is also hosting free workshops at which members of the public can develop ideas and get help from local artists Chloe Williams, Liz Walker and Simon Wood.
The workshops, from 2 to 5pm on Sunday, June 5 and 12, and from 4 to 5.30pm on Friday, June 10, and Thursday, June 16, will be held at Hope Banks Works in Honley.
For details of how to get involved in the carnival email firstname.lastname@example.org or attend one of the workshops.
This year’s festival – from June 17 to 26 – has a circus theme so it’s hoped that the parade will feature a visually-thrilling collection of wild and exotic animal costumes and masks.
For those who want to make a musical contribution to the parade, a pop-up Samba band is planned. Instruments will be provided and all the wannabe musicians need to do is turn up at the Holmeside Gardens in Holmfirth on June 18th at 1pm.
Holmfirth Arts Festival is now in its ninth year and has become one of the area’s major cultural events; bringing music, poetry, theatre, comedy and art to the valley.
As PR representative Sally Brown says: “The festival is professionally run but we have a fantastic team of volunteers, who we just couldn’t manage without. This year we have hired someone to do social media to get as many people involved as possible.”
The brochure of events for this year’s Arts Council-funded festival has just been released and tickets are now on sale for the first string of shows – from a gig by Afro-Latin band Family Atlantica and an evening with Holmfirth comedian Kirean Hodgson to a re-telling of the story of the Holmfirth tiger Fenella by Ian McMillan and Luke Carver.
There will be more on Fenella, a circus tiger who lived in Holmfirth during the 1940s and 50s, in the run-up to the festival, which this year has taken the tiger as its logo.
One of the strengths of the festival is the way it engages families and this year there will be all-age garden art, writing workshops and outdoor activities through the Art in the Woods sculpture trail. Local composer Barry Russell will also be hosting music workshops.
For more information or to book tickets, visit www.holmfirthartsfestival.co.uk or pick up a brochure at an information centre.