Arts festival to build to a rousing finale

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Belper Arts Festival will come to a rousing finale this week - with many of the planned events sold out and visitor numbers already up on last year’s total.

Among the events helping to draw proceedings to a close is a charity art auction at Number 28 on the Market Place today (Wednesday, May 28) from 7.30pm when art-lovers will be able to get their hands on everything from the small to the Belper Arts Collabortives interpretation of Picasso’s Guernica, which measures about 8ft x 5ft.

A performance of Pentrich 1817 : The Last Revolution Sun on Sunday, May 25, at North Mill was sold out as is a closing show for the festival by Phil Doleman and Manitoba Hal at Number 28 this Saturday, May 31.

Songsmith Steve Tilstonwill appear at Belper Rugby Club on Thursday, May 29 from 7.30pm. The gig is a re-scheduled local date - he was due to perform at the Derby Assembly Rooms when it was cancelled due to a large fire there.

The Newfound Festival also saw a wide variety of acts perform on stages at Belper Rugby Club and around 30 houses and other venues were turned into impromptu art galleries over the Bank Holiday weekend as part of Belper Open Houses (pictured).

Belper Arts Festival Chair, Geroge Gunby: “We have been thrilled to bits with the support people have shown this week. Visitor numbers surpassed last year’s 11,000 already - with the total thought to be about 15,000 by tyhe time the festival finishes. We are starting to plan next year already.”

Elsewhere, a singing workshop was organised by Belper community choir The Chevin Singers.

Spokesman Viv Scott said: “The workshop was very popular and tickets quickly sold out. Forty singers learned Maori, Georgian, Gospel and shape-note songs in a day-long session with three wonderful singing teachers, Deb Allitt, Beth de Lange and Richard Talaska”.

Anyone who interested in further workshops can contact the Chevin Singers via their website