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Seven events left for this year's Leek Arts Festival

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: May 28, 2014

By Belinda Hargreaves

  • Birmingham Conservatoire Folk Ensemble.

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It is now only a couple of weeks and just seven events away from the end of another Leek Arts Festival.

The month of May has seen a packed programme of music, art, drama and more – with many events attracting packed audiences.

And that's a complete turn around from last year when the Festival committee – and many of the outside organisations who staged events – lost money.

Festival spokesman Phil Edmeades said: "I think everyone approached this year's Leek Arts Festival with some caution and not a little trepidation, knowing that if ticket sales were as bad as 2013 then we would probably have to call it a day.

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"Happily, audience figures so far this year have been fantastic and there seems to be a real sense of enthusiasm in the town. Despite the many late nights – and the excessive consumption of beer – we are very pleased at the way things have gone this year and by the demand for tickets for virtually everything in the festival programme."

Key events still to come in this year's festival include an evening of blues with local legends The Vice Bishops joined by Gavin Sutherland – one half of the Sutherland Brothers – on May 31, and the Birmingham Conservatoire Folk Ensemble on June 12.

Phil said: "The Folk Ensemble has become a real Leek Arts Festival tradition with more than 40 young musicians raising a storm on stage at The Foxlowe Arts Centre. It's always a fantastic night and tickets are selling fast.We are also delighted to have secured the legendary Gavin Sutherland – the man who wrote Rod Stewart's famous hit 'sailing' – whose appearance at The Foxlowe Arts Centre with Uttoxeter's Vice Bishops will be one of just a handful of gigs he plays this year."

The full list of events for the rest of the Leek Arts Festival is as follows:

Tonight (Wednesday May 28):

Green Dragon Mysteries Society present Energy Fields and the Human Experience. Quaker Meeting House, Overton Bank, Leek, 7.30pm. Tickets £5 (£3 concessions).

The Rotten Park Road Theatre Company production of Playtime For The Suicidal: The Musical has been cancelled.

Friday  May 30:

Laurie Lee: Reflections. Local writers Roger Elkin and Pamela Brough-Sandiford join journalist Phil Edmeades to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the writer's birth. 7.30pm, The Foxlowe Arts Centre. Tickets £5 on the door.

Ash Mandrake: 9.30pm The Black Swan, Leek. This incredibly skilled musician & songwriter offers folk, rock, stories and comedy. Free event.

Saturday May 31:

Gavin Sutherland & The Vice Bishops: An evening of blues with local legends The Vice Bishops joined by Gavin Sutherland – one half of the Sutherland Brothers (Sailing, Arms of Mary etcetera) www.gavinsutherland.net. At The Foxlowe Arts Centre 8-8.30pm. Tickets £10 online and from Leek TIC or The Foxlowe.

Saturday June 7:

The Phoenix Singers present Remembrances: Part of the Borderland Tour with Johnny Coppin. All Saints Church, Leek, 7.30pm Tickets £12 (U18s £2) from Leek TIC, Picture Book, West Street Post Office and choir members www.phoenixsingersleek.co.uk

Thursday June 12:

Birmingham Conservatoire Folk Ensemble. Be warned – this gig always sells-out fast. The Foxlowe Arts Centre at 8pm. Tickets £13 online and from Leek TIC or The Foxlowe. www.folkensemble.co.uk

For full details and to buy tickets online go to www.leekartsfestival.org

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