Performances and creative events at this year’s Holmfirth Arts Festival will be spread over eight months from April to October 2022.

Instead of cramming everything into one weekend, the excellent and varied programme will run at several venues and places, with the stunning backdrop of the Holme Valley used to full advantage to help celebrate this year’s theme ‘The Earth Beneath Our Feet’.

Thanks to funding from Arts Council England, Kirklees Council, Holme Valley Parish Council, Longley Farm and others, festival organisers have invited top quality, diverse, local, national and international artists to respond to the topic of the landscape and environment.

The inspirational indoor programme includes headline comedian Gary Delaney, plus award winning composer and clarinettist Arun Ghosh, singer songwriter guitar virtuoso Jon Gomm, classical music from Clouds Harp Quartet and Riverside Quartet and theatre about running in the wilds, from Daniel Bye and Boff Whalley (pictured below).

Festival director Bev Adams said: “There will be something for all ages and we want people to join in and share their own creativity. There are opportunities to join Holmfirth Beats new percussion band with Katie Mallard, help make an outdoor art trail and work with Dan Prior to perform as a soul choir. There is also an opportunity to learn to make your own digital music with Josh Haslam of Jam Factory.”

Scenic walks with a difference are taking place to include storytelling and activity and two experimental projects will explore quarries and reservoirs as performance venues and a day of music performed by local people and professionals in Holmside Gardens promises a fun day out on Saturday June 18.

“Spectacular street theatre returns to the streets on Sunday June 19, with premieres of new shows from Highly Sprung performance – who bought the town to a halt with Urban Astronaut last year and Mind the Gap – both shows highlight climate change issues.

Bev added: “We are delighted to have awarded this year’s annual Steve Sykes Commission to Asha Diveney-Clegg who will install Tones of Holme in the River Holme in Holmfirth town centre. The new kinetic sculpture harnesses the power of the River Holme to play sounds and will be on display from June 17-20.”

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