The Rye Festival was inaugurated thirty-two years ago and has grown since then from a handful of classical and literary events set on two weekends to its present size – fifty events presented during a full fortnight of entertainment. Now the festival stages music of all kinds; literary talks, lectures and book signing; film shows; theatre; cabaret; dance; comedy; exhibitions; master-classes; tours and walks. It has been rated among the 50 best festivals worldwide, and in the UK’s 10 best for arts and culture.
This year’s thirty-third Rye Festival could well be the most successful yet, with ticket sales at a record high, several of the events were completely sold out two weeks before the first performance had taken place.
There is something here for everyone, from Blues and Jazz to classical recitals that make the mouth water. Art classes and shows run throughout the entire Festival and the literary buffs are well looked after.
Past Conservative Party leader William Hague will be in town on Thursday 9 September discussing William Pitt the Younger who was instrumental in building the Military Canal and the Martello Towers against the threat of Napoleon.
Film, Theatre and Cabaret are represented in many shows at different venues but Richard Rodney Bennett’s “An Evening of Film and Cabaret” is especially recommended.
Comedy is represented by “Stand Up Miles Jupp.” Miles was nominated for the Perrier Best Newcomer Award at the Edinburgh Fringe 2003 for his show Gentlemen Prefer Brogues.
An Exhibition not to miss is Wry People, Rye Places and Rye Boats, the work of local artist Jill Stott, at the Turtle Gallery. This event runs from Saturday 4 September to 2 October.
Rye Camera Club’s Annual Print Exhibition will be well worth a visit, this is on Saturday 11 September at the Adult Education Centre, Lion Street. An exhibition of local Arts and Crafts starts at the Martello Bookshop the following day and runs for a week.
There are specialist free events included in the Festival programme, available everywhere. This gives details of all events and booking procedures.
“Rye’s Own” September 2004
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