Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Holt Festival Announces its First Highlights Including Henry Blofeld, Peter Baxter & More

Holt Festival has announced the first highlights for the 2015 Festival. Under the stewardship of new Artistic Director Charles Pugh, the 7th Festival is already looking to include something for everyone.

From comedy to cuisine, politics to pop and classical and much more, Holt Festival brings you the best in music, theatre and the spoken word in a glorious artistic celebration. Staged in the last week of July with the charming North Norfolk Georgian country town as its backdrop, this award winning annual feast of the arts has quickly become one of the most eagerly anticipated events of the Norfolk calendar. It is also increasingly enticing more visitors into the area.

'My principal objective for 2015 is to ensure that there is quality arts and entertainment across a range of styles and disciplines. These early announcements give a flavour of the full programme of shows and events that we shall be revealing in May,' said Charles. He continued 'Past successful visits from the likes of David Starkey, Melvyn Bragg, Sandi Toksvig and Michael Palin have demonstrated the appetite for this type of afternoon event so I'm pleased to be welcoming speakers of the calibre of Jeffry Archer, Michael Buerk, Dame Stella Rimington, Loyd Grossman and Tom Parker Bowles as well as the inimitable Blofeld and Baxter to Holt.'

Other big names at the festival include chart topper and pop pioneers Steve Harley with his band Cockney Rebel, influential and constantly evolving folk rock legends Steeleye Span and the rejuvenated original punk poet, comedian, movie radio and rock star John Cooper Clarke and his special guest Martin Newell. Blake are the classical crossover boy band who have delighted TV audiences and topped charts the world over with sales of over a million albums.

There's a world exclusive with the premiere of Hello Mr Gershwin, a musical journey through the remarkable but tragically short life of George Gershwin and a UK exclusive as masterful award winning classical guitarist Mariano Mangas performs his first ever British show in Holt after previously earning standing ovations all over mainland Europe and the USA. Lorraine & Alan is a retelling of the Orkney Selkie myth relocated to Norfolk using live sound design and several hundred plastic bottles. It was an award winner at the 2014 Edinburgh Fringe.

'I'm looking to make my first Festival as director intriguing, provocative and amusing - and of course entertaining' said Mr Pugh - I hope these first few shows are setting me well on the way to achieving that goal and I'm already looking forward to announcing the full programme in all its glory in May'

Tickets for the early shows go on general sale on 9 March.

Entry details for the Holt Festival Art Prize, which attracts submissions from far and wide will be announced soon.
The 2015 Holt Festival runs from 19 - 26 July.

Holt Festival is generously supported by Gresham's School.
Festival media partners are Eastern Daily Press, North Norfolk News, Mustard TV and Future Radio.

Early Highlight listings info:

Monday 20 July 2pm £20/£5
HENRY BLOFELD & PETER BAXTER: Rogues on the Road (talk)
Globetrotting reminiscences and hilarious (and occasionally outrageous) anecdotes from belovedly bubbly and boisterous Test Match Special commentator Blowers and his long time (and long suffering) producer Baxter.
Holt Festival at the Auden Theatre, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Monday 20 July 8pm £22/£5

Dr JOHN COOPER CLARKE with special guest MARTIN NEWELL (poetry)
The original punk poet, comedian, movie radio and rock star. TV and radio presenter, social and cultural commentator and legend, the bard of Salford is joined by Essex's inspirational wordsmith Newell.
Holt Festival at the Auden Theatre, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Tuesday 21 July 2pm £15/£5
Original Masterchef presenter, entrepreneur, writer and all round foodie in conversation with Mail on Sunday and Esquire restaurant critic. Culinary chat from two of the UK's best-known food experts.
Holt Festival at the Auden Theatre, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Wednesday 22 July 6 pm £20/£5
One of the world's greatest classical guitarists, a professor of the instrument in his native Spain and Chair of Flamenco at the Conservatory of Rotterdam. He comes to Holt for his very first UK appearance following performances all over mainland Europe and the USA.
Holt Festival at St Andrew's Church, Church Street, Holt NR25 6BB

Wednesday 22 July 8pm £25/£5
BLAKE (classical music/opera)
Brit Award winning harmony trio singing eclectic classical music and pop songs. They have sold well over a million albums, topped classical charts around the world and appeared on more than 150 TV shows worldwide.
Holt Festival at the Auden Theatre, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Thursday 23 July 2pm £15/£5
One of the UK's best known broadcast journalists and writers, Buerk has won a multitude of awards for international TV reporting. He will discuss Islamic fundamentalism with radio presenter and former BBC head of religious broadcasting Rae.
Holt Festival at the Auden Theatre, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Friday 24 July 2pm £15/£5
DAME STELLA RIMINGTON in conversation (talk)
The first female Director General of MI5, now a successful novelist, talks about her creative life and career. with Daily Telegraph critic Jake Kerridge.
Holt Festival at the Lawns Hotel, Station Road, Holt, NR25 6BS

Saturday 25 July 6pm £20/£5
HELLO MR GERSHWIN (musical theatre)
World premiere of a brand new musical from Seastar. A musical journey through George Gershwin's remarkable life and tragically early death, featuring British pianist and composer Michael Finnissy's arrangements, a jazz band and a cast of rising stars from the top conservatoires, devised and directed by composer and director Susie Self.
Auden Theatre, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Saturday 25 July 8pm £30/£5
STEVE HARLEY & Cockney Rebel (music)
Pop music pioneer Steve Harley has written and recorded eleven albums in a prolific career covering four decades. He has enjoyed chart success with Top 20 hits including Judy Teen, Mr Soft, Mr Raffles, 'Here Comes The Sun' and the number 1 Make Me Smile (Come Up & See Me).
Holt Festival at Theatre in the Woods, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Sunday 26 July 4pm £15/£5
JEFFREY ARCHER: Politics Life & Literature (literature/talk)
Lord Archer is the author of 33 published books which have sold over 270 million copies in 97 countries and been translated into 37 languages. The former MP and Chair of The Conservative Party will talk about his extraordinary life, his books and his career in politics and invite questions from the audience.
Holt Festival at Theatre in the Woods, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Sunday 26 July 6pm £20/£5
LORRAINE & ALAN (theatre)
Original award winning playful re-telling of the Scottish Selkie myth set on the North Norfolk coast featuring live sound design and several hundred plastic bottles. A Marine Biology graduate falls in love with a mysterious young woman he discovers lying amongst the seals and their lives become irreversibly entwined
Holt Festival at the Auden Theatre, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Sunday 26 July 8.00pm £25/£5
Folk rock pioneers with a new live show. Singer Maddy Prior leads a line-up featuring faces old and new performing the classics that established their reputation alongside newer songs from their 2014 album Wintersmith, a collaboration with Sir Terry Pratchett.
Holt Festival at Theatre in the Woods, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA

Box office 01603 598699 open for general booking Monday 9 March.

Related Articles View More UK Regional Stories   Shows

More Hot Stories For You