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Organisers appeal for help to ensure long-term future of Sudbury Festival of Performing Arts




An urgent plea for people to come forward to help at the 2021 Sudbury Festival of Performing Arts has been issued.

Organisers have given more than a year’s notice of the assistance they need to organise and run the festival because it is facing a battle to survive due to a shortage of help.

The festival gives hundreds of young musicians, dancers and actors the chance to perform and to compete. Some former competitors have gone on to stardom, including Royal Ballet principal character artist Gary Avis and West End star Kerry Ellis.

The organisers of Sudbury Festival of Performing Arts say it is under serious threat because of lack of people to run it. ...Pictured:Julie Penney (treasurer), .Joan Garden (chairman), Graeme Garden (president) and Isabel Hebden (secretary). ..PICTURE: Mecha Morton ... (21700955)
The organisers of Sudbury Festival of Performing Arts say it is under serious threat because of lack of people to run it. ...Pictured:Julie Penney (treasurer), .Joan Garden (chairman), Graeme Garden (president) and Isabel Hebden (secretary). ..PICTURE: Mecha Morton ... (21700955)

Having just published the syllabus for the 2020 festival taking place in March, organisers say they need a commitment for volunteers in 2021 to keep the event, which is closing in on its 100th year, going.

Festival chairman Joan Garden said: “It is with regret that the 2020 festival does not include the very popular dance section and the speech and drama.

“However, it is hoped that these two parts of the festival will be reinstated in 2021.”

Mrs Garden, who, with her husband Graeme, has been involved in the festival for over 40 years, added: “In a few years’ time, the festival will be celebrating its 100th year and all involved with this fantastic event are committed to achieving this milestone.

“To do this, we need volunteers to come forward to help with the festival in 2021.

“This is a call to arms for people to offer their support and help by either joining the festival committee or offering to help during the festival.”

As a result of the reduced schedule, next year’s festival will only feature a music section, and will run at The Delphi Centre off Newton Road in Sudbury from March 5 to 8.

Mrs Garden added: “It has been a very successful event in Sudbury, with entries from all over East Anglia, not only providing young people with the opportunity to display their ability in all sections of performing arts, but to also give a great deal of pleasure to those in the audience.”

Anyone interested in helping should contact Mrs Garden on 01787 372087.


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