NEWS: Stockton International Riverside Festival | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Now in its 27th year, Stockton International Riverside Festival (or SIRF for short) will be celebrating the redevelopment of the town centre with a magical programme of street theatre, circus, dance and music from Thursday 30th July until Sunday 2nd August.

Writer and novelist Sara Maitland has devised Instant Light: a mythical version of how Stockton became a festival town, set in the 1800s. The story begins on Thursday 30th July when a circus troupe arrives in town by boat. They’ll be making appearances across the Festival period, including at the SIRF Community Carnival on Saturday 1st August: an explosion of colourful costumes and infectious beats.

The circus theme continues on Friday and Saturday with Love Struck, a specially-created production from dance theatre company Ballet Lorrent, which relates the romance between an inventor and daring fairground performer.

Other highlights include the Trinity Fire Garden, which will envelop Stockton’s Trinity Green with moving fire sculptures (Saturday 1st-Sunday 2nd August) and 451, a dazzling pyrotechnic-filled adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s visionary novel, Fahrenheit 451 (Friday 31st July).

The rest of the programme includes acts such as a fully-functioning giant carousel, a comedy orchestra and an aerial trapeze show performed atop 368 assembled bamboo poles, which will have to be seen to be believed. A truly illuminating experience, guaranteed.

Stockton International Riverside Festival takes place at various locations from Thursday 30th July until Sunday 2nd August.

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