Kidderminster Arts Festival (KAF) is back in the town centre between Saturday 8 August and Sunday 23 August. The popular event is bringing some of the best local and national talent to the area.
Last year the festival won a huge following with its WWI theme. Thousands of people visited the town to see the chalk outlines of bodies in Vicar Street, which represented those people from Kidderminster who had died in the war.
KAF15 will see Vicar Street transformed again, this time with simple origami birds, LED lighting and sound effects. It will create the effect of birds flying along the street. And transformation is the theme of the whole festival.
Comberton Hill Subway is ever changing and from Saturday 8 August it is being restyled again. Wallpaper featuring pictures taken by local photographers will be pasted over the town’s largest subway. They will depict local architectural gems and eyesores. The project has been made possible thanks to support from the Big Print Shop, which is subsidising the printing.
There will be a fantastic selection of street entertainers performing in the town centre. Among those on offer, visitors can see the ‘Mischievous Men’, from physical theatre company Being Frank (Saturday 22 August). Dressed as builders they will be bringing a new dance piece to the town. And Matt Pang and his Thingamobob will be using a mixture of circus, invention and comedy to bring an unusual piece of gadgetry to life during his act (Saturday 15 August).
There are shows such as ‘The Ugly Duckling’ from the Sea Legs Puppet Theatre and a fund raising cabaret at
Kidderminster Town Hall (Saturday 8 August), a drive-in cinema showing four films in New Road Car Park(Friday 21 and Saturday 22 August), plus stages specifically for everyone to have a go and show off their talents and even a fringe festival.
KAF is organised by Wyre Forest District Council. Sally Chambers, Wyre Forest District Council’s Cabinet Member for Health, Well-being and Housing said:
“KAF is now in its twelfth year. Once again there is a fabulous collection of entertainment on offer over the two weeks and most of it is free or under £5. I would urge people to have a look at the website or brochure. They’ll find more on the website as new events have been added and there’s more space! There is so much going on in the area, you will need to plan your visit.”
KAF15 is being supported by grants of almost £27,000 from The Arts Council, £25,000 from Worcestershire County Council Open for Business Fund (over 2 years) and £2,000 from the Elmley Foundation. Wyre Forest District Council also gets assistance from many other organisations to make KAF possible.
Loz Samuels, Wyre Forest District Council’s Arts and Play Development Officer organises the festival. She said:
“We were absolutely delighted with the response to KAF14. The WW1 theme really took off and we had an amazing reaction to the chalk bodies, inflatable dogs and knitted poppies in Vicar Street. Now we’re hoping that residents get behind KAF15. It’s an exciting programme of music, dance, workshops, shows, street entertainment and so much more. “
More details about KAF are available on the website or in the KAF brochure, which can be picked up from the Worcestershire Hub, Kidderminster Town Hall and the library.
Some events require tickets. These can be booked online .They can also be purchased from Kidderminster Town Hall between 9am and 12 noon and by calling 01562 732984 (between 9am and 12 noon).