Graeme Farrow is the Artistic Director of Wales Millennium Centre and Festival of Voice. He is looking forward to the second instalment of the event.
“Women and song are at the heart of this year’s new commissions. They will move you, make you think, laugh, and even frighten you. You can’t see these shows anywhere else but in Cardiff and we are showcasing some of the extraordinary talent we have here in Wales.”
Additionally, sex education campaign collective Bedfellows present Sex Ed Assembly (16 June), a two-hour participatory forum of artists, audiences and sexually autonomous creatures, aiming to collaboratively re-educate on sex while creating tools to resist heterosexist, masculinist sex education.
Festival of Voice is also inviting women (including those who identify as women or non-binary) and girls to raise their voices with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take part in PROCESSIONS, a mass participation artwork to celebrate one hundred years of votes for women. On Sunday 10 June, women and girls in Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London will walk together, wearing either green, white or violet to represent the colours of the suffrage movement and standing for “Give Women Votes”. Produced by Artichoke and commissioned by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary, PROCESSIONS will appear as flowing rivers of colour through the city streets, creating a living portrait of women in the 21st century (register from 8th March at processions.co.uk).
Graeme continues, “We’re incredibly excited to be working with Artichoke who make some of the most extraordinary and ambitious public art in cities around the world. This will be the first time they’ve brought one of their projects to Cardiff and we felt it was perfect timing to celebrate 100 years of suffrage during Festival of Voice and give the women of Wales an opportunity to come together, celebrate sisterhood and share their voices.”
National Theatre Wales collaborate with renowned Manchester-based theatre company Quarantine on English (from 14 June), which looks at language, migration and identity. Made in Wales but with a global perspective, this performance pulls pop songs apart, tears grammar to pieces and invites all the languages in the room to be heard.
”There is much to reflect upon in the world in 2018 so this year’s programme includes an opportunity to protest together, to listen to debate and to get involved. The human voice is democratic, rich and wonderfully varied. I hope that experiencing and discovering the voices within this festival will be a life-affirming adventure and a celebration of the most beautiful instrument we all share together” concludes Graeme Farrow.
Sarah Dennehy, Executive Creative Producer on Festival of Voice commented, “The second instalment of Festival of Voice plays host to some incredible artists from Benin, Sweden, Iceland, Corsica, America, Canada and beyond as well as plenty of amazing home-grown Welsh and UK talent. Arts festivals have the capacity to deliver experiences that help us remember how amazing we can be when we really put our voice to something. Our programme aims to look beyond borders, instead celebrating the vibrancy of art and voice”
Festival of Voice wants to give voice to unheard voices and has partnered with Learning Disability Wales to launch Gig Buddies, a befriending scheme that matches people with a learning disability with volunteers who share the same interests so they can go to gigs together. Gig Buddies Cardiff is a new project that will make it possible for people with a learning disability to stay up late and attend live music and arts by night, overcoming obstacles including transport, confidence, safety, and accessibility of venues.
On April 10, Festival of Voice Cardiff will unveil their third wave of acts and further information about a variety of festival projects. Charlotte Church will take over Wales Millennium Centre to implement her idea of Utopia (and Dystopia) on unsuspecting gig goers on Saturday 16 June, more detail on the curated event will be revealed. Also to be revealed – more details about a new enigmatic collaborative project from a headliner, plus more.
Festival of Voice Cardiff returns this year for its second instalment. The programme of music and arts welcomes those firmly on the creative frontier, with shows spanning contemporary and classical music, opera, theatre, talks, visual arts, guest curation and community projects with the welcoming city of Cardiff as the host.
There will be free events and opportunities for participation and volunteering, making this a festival of new opportunities to discover. For prices and more information, please visit festivalofvoice.wales