A free family festival held in the town centre of Coleford, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire.
Festival organisers and volunteers have been working in partnership with Coleford Town Council to bring this fabulous community festival back to the streets of Coleford. The event will take place on Saturday 16th & Sunday 17th July in the town centre and It promises to be as spectacular as ever with something to please all musical tastes and ages!
Both days will kick off at 1pm and live music coming from four stages around the town centre which will feature an eclectic mix of jazz, reggae, rockabilly, blues, folk and more with performances from musicians and artists from the local area as well as a few from a little further afield.
This year we will be holding a colourful community pageant to open the festival.
The pageant will be a parade which will take place through Coleford Town Centre, led by local community artist Vicki Thornton who said “ Local schools, community groups and individuals have been engaged to create their own interpretation of ‘what is special’ about the Forest of Dean and what makes the forest nationally identifiable and unique today, such as the two rivers, trees, bluebells, deer, sheep and wild boar.”
Vicki has been working with artists Claire Milinzcuk and Sarah Cheese, who have all been delivering workshops in the local schools of St Johns and Clearwell whilst engaging with community groups such as Coleford Girl Guides, Coleford Brownies, Lakers Steel Pan Band, the Forest Youth Theatre and a Dementia Group based at Artspace.
Together they will present a visual display of ‘what is special about the forest’, including a two legged dragon (the mythical Wyevern), a giant tree, giant stag, a few unusually large books, a collection of giant butterflies, bees and fish along with two rivers!
To enjoy what will be hopefully the first of many Pageant’s across the forest, be at Coleford Clock Tower from 1pm on Saturday.
Following the pageant will be belly dancers, a salsa dancing workshop, as well as
performances from local bands The Rumble and Devon. For those that prefer a bit of Blues, The Keith Thompson band will be on main stage, for Jazz emthusiasts The Paris Jazz cafe Swing band will also be playing, all culminating in a performance by one of the hottest Ska acts around, 2Rude.
2Rude have been touring the country playing their unique style of two toned inspired hits, they have played a string of sell out shows, headlined festivals and have left thousands of people breathless and shouting for more. The band will be performing on th main stage on Saturday evening and we are anticipating a real party atmospehere!
Sunday will begin with a performance from the Coleford Commuity choir.Those that have been to the festival before know that we like to have a mix of music & one of the highlights of Sunday will be a performance from RSVP, spearheading the renaissance of live Bhangra in the Uk. From Glastonbury & Womad to Coleford Muisc Festival They’re always guaranteed to get the most reluctant on their feet, the ultimate in celebratory Indian music. We also have The Firebirds, recognised as one of Europe’s finest Doo Wap, Jive, Rock n’Roll & Rockabilly bands.
The headline performance on Sunday will be from the UK’s No1 1960’s Soul Man, Geno Washingon. He’s the real deal, enjoying cult status on the soul, R & B, Blues & Northe
rn Soul scenes. This is due mainly to his unsurpassable reputation as a live performer.
A contemporary of Alexis Corner, Georgie Fame, The Small Faces and Jimi Hendrix (all of whom were his support acts back in the day) and he is as electrifying on stage today as ever; a force of nature and a joy to behold, so don’t miss him!.
Coleford Music Festival has been known for promoting new young local talent & this year is no exception, check out Buskers Corner & St John Street Stage, both will feature some performances from young people & bands who have seldom before performed in front of a live audience.
The Newland street stage will feature a more laid back vibe with a mix of folk, blues, country & jazz culminating in a performance by Folklaw, a 4 piece acoustic folk-rock band from the Cotswolds.
As well as live music there will be plenty of street food, including hot pork, noodles, falafals, wraps, salads, caribbean & spices, all to compliment the food outlets in the town centre.There will also be circus skills workshops, displays, and a festival market , the kids can be entertained by Punch & Judy & take part in some crafty activities, there may even be .one or two surprises! Anyone wishing to bring along an instrument can join in the acoustic fun with spaces available around the town centre.
The festival has been well known for getting people dancing in the streets & this year will be no exception, so come along & support this fantastic community event.
Programmes are available from local shops & the Tourist Information Centre.
Full festival line up can be found at website http://www.colefordmusicfestival.co.uk along with details about how you can make a donation to keep music live in Coleford!