News: Yorkshire Festival 2014


Singers, artists and performers join forces in a glittering spectacle at Europe’s newest shopping complex, to give the public a taste of what to expect at Yorkshire Festival 2014.

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A carnival snail, woolly bikes, choirs and brass bands emerged from shops to join band Hope & Social on the concourse for a debut performance of the official Yorkshire Festival song, The Big Wide.

They were watched by shoppers and supporters of the Yorkshire Festival 2014 which began its procession from Angelica through the complex to watch the performance en route to Holy Trinity Church.

They are all part of the full programme of events that were announced today for the first time, as the county gears up for Yorkshire Festival 2014 – the first ever to precede the Tour de France in its 111 year history.

West Yorkshire Playhouse will host “Beryl” written by TV star Maxine Peake to celebrate the extraordinary sporting achievements of Morley cyclist Beryl Burton. Beryl is a specially commissioned adaptation from Ms Peake’s acclaimed 2012 Radio 4 play and marks her stage writing debut.

Award-winning director Daisy Asquith teams up with cult musician Bill Nelson to create a new film as part of a series of screenings to be shown on 10 outdoor screens in stunning locations across Yorkshire. Tour de Cinema presents fiction and documentary films (including Alan Bennett’s rarely seen BBC film ‘A Day Out’, about a Halifax cycling club; and Jarvis Cocker’s blazing soundtrack for The Big Melt) also in 35 local town halls and city centre big screens.

The festival is the brainchild of Welcome to Yorkshire and has been backed by Yorkshire Water, Arts Council England and Yorkshire local authorities. Out of almost 400 bids, 47 projects were commissioned (full programme in date order attached) to be officially part of the 100-day festival – which will also include hundreds of fringe events. Further highlights include:

Los Angeles-based sculptor Thomas Houseago, from Leeds, has been tasked to create two magnificent, giant sculptures for Leeds city centre and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park. These will be his first commissions for his home county and the first ever commissions to be made by the Yorkshire Sculpture Triangle.

Phoenix Dance Theatre, in Leeds, will join forces with Scottish public arts charity NVA to create the world’s first Ghost Peloton, led by Phoenix artistic director Sharon Watson and NVA creative director Angus Farquhar. Ghost Peloton incorporates a riding team of 50 road racers, stunt cyclists and large-scale projection of dancers all utilising unique remote controlled light suits to produce a stunning live choreography.

Ghost Peloton builds on the worldwide success of Speed of Light, which was first commissioned for the London 2012 Olympics. An appeal has now gone out to Yorkshire cyclists to get involved in this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Young farmers and artists will create eight stunning major land art pieces across South Pennines landscape for Fields of Vision, co-ordinated by Pennine Prospects. This will capture the spirit and impact of the tour on the landscape of Yorkshire

Henrietta Duckworth, the festival’s Executive Producer, said: “Today we wanted to give people a flavour of this brand new arts festival – Yorkshire’s a big wide county and we’ve worked with our world-class artists to create a rich and diverse programme of opportunities and surprises. It’s a first for the Grand Départ and a festival of free events across all art-forms. We invite everyone to explore the new, celebrate together and be part of it.”

Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “The Yorkshire Festival 2014 will be a countywide celebration of arts and culture creating excitement and anticipation in the 100 days before greatest free sporting show on the planet arrives in Yorkshire.”

Richard Flint, Chief Executive of Kelda Group and Yorkshire Water, said: “The Grand Départ goes through the heart of many of our reservoir catchments in north, west and south Yorkshire and we are proud to be supporting Yorkshire Festival 2014 which promotes the terrific talent and beauty our great region has to offer.”

Sarah Maxfield, Director North, Arts Council England said: “Arts Council England is really proud to be supporting the festival. A festival of over 100 days is an ambitious goal but I’m very impressed by the high quality and breadth of the programme which is sure to impress the thousands of visitors from Yorkshire and beyond and will provide a lasting legacy for culture in the North.”

Cllr Tim Swift, Leader of Calderdale Council, which has co-ordinated local authority support for the festival said: “Yorkshire Festival 2014 will be a spectacular experience with a packed programme celebrating the strength of the arts across the region. On behalf of all the supporting local authorities we are proud to have been involved in its organisation and look forward to its success.”

Visit, Yorkshire Festival on Facebook or follow Yorkshire Festival 2014 on Twitter – @YFest2014


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