Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper
Stade Saturdays

…they’re back!

Following on from last year’s inaugural success, Stade Saturdays return to Hastings this weekend with a quality line-up of international and local acts. John Knowles, who has an interest to declare, reports.

The council has dug deep into its remaining Arts Council budget to bring a range of events to the Stade every Saturday from now until October with diversity and quality at the heart of the programme. I’d almost rather keep my personal highlights to myself lest they become inundated, but here goes:

The Furnace (1 June), a folk, dance, explosion of sheer energy

The Tiger Lillies (6 July), dark songs of a disturbing nature from the falsetto voice of Martyn Jacques

Dromos pop-up festival (27 July), featuring one of my favourite new local bands, Dorey The Wise

and finally Nofitstate Circus (21 September), an evening of mesmerising circus skills from the UK’s leading contemporary circus company.

I should at this point declare an interest, as I am also arranging an event in the Stade Saturdays programme myself – The Gilded Hand International Buskers Fair on 17 August. The Gilded Hand is a medieval idea which allowed musicians and actors to perform without fear of arrest. Although this inaugural event will be by invite only, it is hoped that future years will see a self-sustaining and self-managed event arise. Troubadour and street veteran Rory McLeod will be headlining this event, which is being managed by Fetch Productions, a new local event production company.

One big question is what happens post 2013, when Arts Council funding (which has largely paid for the events) runs out. The original funds did highlight the need for the development of a sustainable programme, and whilst much is to be praised in bringing quality such as last year’s spectacular Pi Leau to Hastings, they do little to actually develop sustainable and repeatable events on the ground.

Speaking for the council, arts development officer Michael Hambridge says that the aim has been to create “a model in terms of programming style, a high quality mix of local, national and international performers alongside performers from local communities which will establish a pattern for future years. This year we have also deliberately used Stade Saturdays to give a platform to local young musicians which we also want to continue in the future.”

Asked for a personal highlight for 2013, Mr Hambridge went for Tekameli (18 May), a Catalonia and gypsy influenced band, “uplifting, irresistible and unmissable.”

For a full listing pick up a brochure at the Tourist Information Centre or a pdf via the link below.

If you would like to be involved with the Gilded Hand project, contact John Knowles 0n 07813 03 55 14.


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Posted 14:35 Wednesday, May 8, 2013 In: Arts News

Also in: Arts News

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