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Hidden Wonders of the North: Karen Lloyd and Beth Pipe

Thursday 28th March 7:30pm

Venue: The Storey Auditorium, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH

Tickets: £10 Full/ £8 Concession/ £6 Student

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online: VIC Ticketbox

 

In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808

Following on from last year’s popular series of nature writing events, the first ‘Litfest Springfest’, we bring you two more emerging voices from the genre. First, we have the  welcome return of festival favourite Karen Lloyd, author of the award winning The Gathering Tide, who will be reading from her latest book The Blackbird Diaries. Over the four seasons, Karen intimately chronicles the drama of the natural world as it all unfolds in her garden and in the limestone hills and valleys of Cumbria’s South Lakeland. Karen will be joined by Beth Pipe, whose passion for Cumbria turned into a popular blog and a prolific writing career as one half the ‘Cumbrian Ramblers’. Beth brings the forgotten corners of the Lake District alive with a vivid sense of humour and fun.

 

Beth Pipe describes herself as an “accidental writer” after a blog, which she wrote for family and friends, turned into a writing career. Based in Grange-over-Sands she works with her husband Steve (she does the words, he does the photos) and between them they delight in sharing their love for Cumbria with the world. Their first book   Historic Cumbria, Off the Beaten Track, was shortlisted for the Lakeland Book of the Year award and Gin, Cakes and Rucksacks was a big hit following its launch in October 2018. In total they have published five books with three more due out in 2019 and the sequel to Gin, Cake and Rucksacks already confirmed for spring 2020.

Karen Lloyd is a writer of creative non-fiction and poetry and a wildlife conservationist specialising in ground-nesting birds. Based in Kendal, Cumbria, she is a contributor to the Guardian, BBC Countryfile magazine, Scottish Island Explorer, Scotland Outdoor and the Caught by the River blog. Karen is a member of Kendal’s Brewery Poets and gained a distinction from the Creative Writing M.Litt programme at Stirling University. Her first book, The Gathering Tide, won a Lakeland Award and was selected in the Observer books of the year feature for 2016.

 

 

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Translate, Create, Debate! Literary Dispatches from the Peripheries of Europe

Friday 29th March 11 am + 1pm

Venue: Reading Room, The Storey, Meeting House Lane Lancaster, LA1 1TH
Tickets: Free

 
11am — Try your hand at creative translation from French by using a short film by literary author Noemi Lefebvre and film maker Laurent Grappe commissioned for the evening “Found in Translation! Literary Dispatches from the Peripheries of Europe” in this workshop. Discuss the issue of the “European periphery” raised in the short film with the writers themselves and try your hand at freely translating and rewriting them in English with the guidance of literary translator Sophie Lewis. No knowledge of French is needed for this creative exercise as gloss translations of the texts will be provided as well as the originals.
Sophie Lewis has been translating fiction and other literature from French since graduating from Oxford University in 2004. Following a stay in Rio de Janeiro, she also began translating from Portuguese. Her translations include works by Stendhal, Jules Verne, Marcel Aymé, Violette Leduc, Emmanuelle Pagano, Natalia Borges Polesso and João Gilberto Noll. She has pursued a career in publishing alongside translation, running the UK office at Dalkey Archive Press, then as Senior Editor at And Other Stories publisher and currently as fiction editor at the Folio Society. She has also edited translation-rich issues of Litro and Sonofabook magazines. In 2017 her translation of Héloïse is Bald by Emilie de Turckheim received a Scott Moncrieff Prize commendation and her most recent translation, the novel Blue Self-Portrait by Noémi Lefebvre, was shortlisted for the Republic of Consciousness Prize.
 
1pm – Try your hand at creative translation from German using a text by Ulrike Almut Sandig and Grigory Semenchuk commissioned for the evening “Found in Translation! Literary Dispatches from the Peripheries of Europe”. In this workshop. Discuss the issue of the “European  periphery” raised in the text with the writers and try your hand at freely translating and rewriting them in English with the guidance of literary translator Sophie Lewis. No knowledge of German is needed for this creative exercise as gloss translations of the texts will be provided as well as the originals.
 
Ulrike Almut Sandig was born in Großenhain (GDR) in 1979 and now lives with her family in Berlin. Two prose books, three pop music albums, radio pieces and four volumes of her poetry have been published to date. In 2016 Karen Leeder’s stunning translations of Sandig’s latest poetry Thick of it (Seagull Books, 2018) won the English PEN translation Pitch and have been awarded with a PEN America/Heim Translation Fund Grant. In 2018 Sandig and Grigory Semenchuk aka Poetry-Band “Landschaft” published their debut album with Schöffling & Co (Berlin). Meanwhile Hurst Street Press (Oxford/London, UK) launched a cycle from Sandig’s latest poetry collection in Karen Leeder’s translation. Grimm reanimates the dark side of The Children’s and Household Tales of the Brothers Grimm and uses it as a backdrop for contemporary European concerns: war, migration, the rise of the Right. Ulrike Almut Sandig is a member of the German PEN section.

 
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Found in Translation: Literary Dispatches from the Peripheries of Europe

Friday 29th March 7:30pm

Venue: The Storey Auditorium, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH

Tickets: £5 Full/ £3 Concession

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online: VIC Ticketbox

In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808

Writers Emma McGordon (Whitehaven, Cumbria), Grigory Semenchuk (Ukraine), Ulrike Almut Sandig (Germany) and Noémi Lefebvre (France) have been commissioned to write and creatively translate each other’s works on the topic of the European periphery. How similar   are the challenges faced by German, French or Ukrainian societies? Where is the European periphery today and who represents it? Expect a lively and truly inspired evening of spoken word poetry, filmed poetry, music and creative exchange on what living at the periphery of Europe currently means for these four writers.

Emma McGordon is an award winning writer and spoken word artist from West Cumbria. She has been anthologised with Penned in the Margins,  Morden Tower poetry and Handstand’s New Cumbrian Writers as well as having a pamphlet collection with Tall Lighthouse. She is a former Julia Darling Fellowship winner and also has a Northern Writers’ award. Her work has been supported by Arts Council England and she has performed nationally and internationally. 

 

 

 

Ulrike Almut Sandig was born in Großenhain (GDR) in 1979 and now lives with her family in Berlin. Two prose books, three pop music albums, radio pieces and four volumes of her poetry have been published to date. In 2016 Karen Leeder’s stunning translations of Sandig’s latest poetry Thick of it (Seagull Books, 2018) won the English PEN translation Pitch and have been awarded with a PEN America/Heim Translation Fund Grant. In 2018 Sandig and Grigory Semenchuk aka Poetry-Band “Landschaft” published their debut album with Schöffling & Co (Berlin). Meanwhile Hurst Street Press (Oxford/London, UK) launched a cycle from Sandig’s latest poetry collection in Karen Leeder’s translation. Grimm reanimates the dark side of The Children’s and Household Tales of the Brothers Grimm and uses it as a backdrop for contemporary European concerns: war, migration, the rise of the Right. Ulrike Almut Sandig is a member of the German PEN section.

Born in 1964 in Caen, Noémi Lefebvre lives in Lyon and is the author of four novels, all of which have garnered intense critical success: L’autoportrait bleu (2009) (Blue Self-Portrait, translated by Sophie Lewis), L’état des sentiments à l’âge adulte (2012), L’enfance politique (2015) and Poétique de l’emploi (2018). She is a regular contributor to the French investigative website Mediapart and the bilingual French-German review La Mer gelée. She has has written and produced more than thirty short films with her partner Laurent Grappe, a sound artist and director of Studio Doitsu.

 

 

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Beatrix Potter to Harry Potter, Looking Glass to Spyglass: the much loved worlds of Children’s Books

Saturday 30th March 2pm

Venue:  The Sanctuary, Lancaster Library, Market Square, Lancaster LA1 1HY
Tickets: £10 Full/ £8 Concession
Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online: VIC Ticketbox

In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808

The books and stories we read as children often play a formative role in our tastes and interests. This session will explore childhood classics, personal favourites and winners of the prestigious CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals, looking at what makes them endure. It will engage with audience members so why not bring along your own childhood favourite and share what it meant to you. The session will be hosted by Christopher Moore critic and creator of the #YAtakeover digital Festival. Panellists include Amy McKay – selected as School Librarian of the Year, had judged the Blue Peter Book Awards and is co-ordinator for the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medal – and Jake Hope Chair of the Youth Libraries Group, reviewer for numerous publications and official blogger for the Carnegie Medal anniversary when he read and appraised every past winner of the award. Whether you are looking to reminisce and remember or are wanting recommendations in the best books for children, join us for a lively and fascinating discussion!

 
Jake Hope is the Chair of the Youth Libraries Group. He has judged almost every major literary award for children’s books in the UK and has spoken at the London Book Fair, Edinburgh, Cheltenham, Hay and even South Korea. A passionate advocate for children’s books, libraries and reading, Jake is currently writing a book on visual literacy. 

Amy McKay was School Librarian of the Year in 2016. A familiar face at festivals and on judging panels, she makes regular appearances at Edinburgh and Hay and has judged the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway medals, the Blue Peter Book Awards and the Nibbies. Describing herself as a ‘stealth librarian’, Amy lures readers in to the library with innovative clubs and activities using her natural rapport to introduce them to the world of books and reading. 
 
Chris Moore is an influencer for books for children and young adults. He has studied an MA in Publishing and Creative Writing, has written articles for Bookmachine and Writing Ireland and established the popular digital reading promotion, the #YAtakeover on Twitter. Chris is a regular reviewer and commentator. 
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joinedupwriting – Roger McGough + LiTTLe MACHiNe

Saturday 30th March       7pm

Venue:  The Great Hall, Lancaster University, North Spine, Bailrigg , Lancaster LA1 4YW
Tickets:  £18.50— £16.50
Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways:
Online: www.lancasterarts.org
In Person: Great Hall Booking office, The Great Hall Complex, Lancaster University
By phone: 01524 594151

 
For the Saturday evening of our final weekend we have a very special event for you! In partnership with Lancaster Arts at Lancaster University we have a stunning evening of music and poetry with a literary legend. The triumphant return of Roger McGough to Lancaster.
Roger McGough is one of Britain’s best-loved poets. The author of over seventy books of poetry and editor of numerous anthologies, his exuberant new collection ‘joinedupwriting’ ranges from forgotten friendships and the idiosyncrasies of family life to the trauma of war and contemporary global politics. These poems explore the human experience in all its shades of light and dark but always with McGough’s signature wit, irreverence and vivacity. This is the nation’s favourite poet at his finest.Roger’s show with LiTTLe MACHiNe features a fine selection of vintage, classic & surprising   poems set to music. Join us for a gala gig that’s making waves!For adults & 14+. The event will be followed by a book-signing.
President of the Poetry Society, Roger has been honoured with a CBE for services to literature and the Freedom of the City of Liverpool. Roger is well known for being a member of The Scaffold (Lily The Pink, the Aintree Iron) and GRIMMS, The Mersey Sound with Adrian Henri & Brian Patten, his Molière adaptations for English Touring Theatre and the long-running Poetry Please. The beat goes on.
Roger has continued to flourish in recent years. 2016 saw the release of a new album The Likes of Us with LiTTLe MACHiNe. 2017 embraced the 50th anniversary of the iconic & top-selling Penguin Modern Poets’ no.10  –  The Mersey Sound by Adrian Henri, Roger McGough & Brian Patten and the summer of ’67 epic poem of love & lust, broken promises and unfettered dreams, Summer With Monika, was republished and newly illustrated by Chris Riddell. Plus a host of country-wide dates with The Bootleg Beatles and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra in It Was Fifty Years Ago Today which sold out the Royal Albert Hall in hours. Roger’s significant birthday year also saw the publication of 80  –  a selection of poems for children (Puffin). 2019 opens with Roger back on tour with a fantastic new poetry collection— joinedupwriting.
@McgoughRoger www.rogermcgough.org.uk
 
‘The patron saint of poetry’  – Carol Ann Duffy
‘rueful, unpredictable observation to please the sharpest wits’ – The Independent
‘a poemy torch in dark corners’ – Ian McMillan Poetry Review
‘a witty and ingenious chronicler of British life, who manages a range of perennial themes with a deftness and agility that is hard to beat’ – The Poetry Society
‘Liverpool’s own Poet Laureate’  – Daily Post
‘What a night. Roger and Little Machine stormed it’  – Bewdley FestivalFormed in 2009 LiTTLe MACHiNe are the musicians, composers, and writers Walter Wray, Steve Halliwell & Chris Hardy. The ‘must have’ act at Literary Festivals from York to Dubai. They have appeared with Carol Ann Duffy, Roger McGough, Gillian Clarke, Liz Lochhead, John Cooper-Clarke, John Hegley and many others. It’s poetry  –  but not as you’ve heard or seen it before. Music that moves the feet for words that move the soul!
www.little-machine.com
 
  ‘It’s a long time since I heard something so exciting, a wonderful way of delivering poetry. The most brilliant music and poetry band in the world’. Carol Ann Duffy
‘LiTTLe MACHiNe’s sophisticated way with poetry made me fall in love with old and new favourites all over again. They make you laugh and break your heart.’ Gillian Clarke
 
 Photograph: Nick Wright Photography
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The Sea Swallow

Venue:  Ludus Dance, Assembly Rooms, King St, Lancaster, LA1 1RE
Tickets: £10 Full /£7.50 Concession /£5 Child (16 and under)
SPECIAL OFFER— Family Deal available for £25 (two adults two children)
Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808


Litfest has initiated several projects over the years, including The Castle Park Stories and The Slave Trade Memorial Project to name but two.  The Sea Swallow commission was a part of the Mythic Coastline project; Litfest commissioned Gareth Thompson to write a narrative that blended local features and legends, with illustrations by Hannah Magee. These illustrations have been realised in public artworks to be seen on the coast at Cleveleys, including The Sea Swallow Sculpture, the Shipwreck Memorial, the Giant Ogre’s Paddle, the Stone Ogre and Mary’s Shell.


For our 40th festival Litfest has commissioned a very special adaptation of this much loved   story. In partnership with friends of the festival Ludus Dance, we present a very special production combining pre-recorded and live storytelling, soundscape, dance, music and virtual reality technology. Experience the story of The Sea Swallow as never before in this unique promenade-style performance. The event will run from 3pm with groups leaving at 15 minute intervals.
Recommended Minimum age 12+ years (due to the use of VR headsets)
Unfortunately due to issues with the lift at the venue this event will not be accessible to wheelchair users.
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Litfest Scarecrow Competition

Welcome to the first Litfest Scarecrow Competition! Members of the Lancaster & District   community are invited to create a scarecrow in the form of a character from literature. The character can be from any book, from Harry Potter to Sherlock Holmes, Dorothy Gale to the Gruffalo. Simply create your scarecrow and place it somewhere that can be seen from the road. Whether that is in your front window, your front garden or even the roof!

Download a copy of our competition sign here –  Scarecrow competition entry – to be put in the window of your house. Then send us an email to marketing@litfest.org or post a letter to Litfest, The Storey, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH. Please include your name, your address, the character your scarecrow represents, what book the character is from and where the scarecrow is displayed.

Our judges will tour the lanes of the Lancaster District in search of your scarecrows, before awarding the winner with a grand prize!

 

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Litfest Heritage Exhibition

Monday 4th – Sunday 31st March

Venue: The Thomas Storey Room, The Storey, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH

and The Gallery, More Music,13-17 Devonshire Road,Morecambe, LA3 1QT

We’ve delved into the Litfest archives to give you a glimpse into the festival’s 40 year history. Join us for a unique exhibition, including a stunning display of decades-worth of Litfest programmes, the beautifully sculpted ‘book dress’, our extensive portfolio of author letters and autographs, a catalogue of Litfest projects and events captured on camera. There will also be a digital display of the Otter award -winning illustrator Jackie Morris conjured for us from ink at her event last year. Join us for all this and much, much more…

 

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Literary Lancaster: Walks Talks and Tours

Sunday 3rd March &            2pm

Wednesday 20th March

Venue: John O’Gaunt Gatehouse, Lancaster Castle, Castle Parade, Lancaster, LA1 1YJ

Tickets: £5 Adults/ £4 Students & Under 16s

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways:

Online: www.lancaster.gov.uk/VICticketbox

In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808

For many years Lancaster has inspired writers to pick up pen and write down observation in poetry & prose. This guided tour takes visitors around the historic city, highlighting locations of literary significance and bringing them to life with a number of short readings. Contributions range from the quill of 16th Century bargemen, singing the praises of local hospitality, to the laptops of 21st Century crime writers, casting sinister shadows over the streets of the city!

Spaces are limited, so pre-booking is recommended, any remaining places will be available to book on the day at the start of the tour.

Lancaster Walks, Talks & Tours are a small company providing bespoke guided walks, illustrated talks and themed tours, exploring the rich history of the City of Lancaster and the surrounding district.

Lancaster Walks, Talks & Tours principal guide is Gregory Wright. With a background in performing arts, and over twenty years experience in the world of tourism, Gregory provides informed historical narratives in an entertaining and memorable manner

For further details on our guided tour programme, or to enquire about private group bookings, please visit our website at: http://lancasterwalkstalksandtours.co.uk/

 

 

 

 

 

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Saturday 15th December 11am &3pm Father Frost: Winter Stories from Russia

Date: Saturday 15th December

Time: 11am & 3pm – there will be two showings of this performance

Venue: The Storey Auditorium, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster LA1 1TH

Tickets: 

Full £9/Concession £7/ Child (Under 11) £5/ Family Combo Ticket (Two adults two children) £23

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online: VIC Ticketbox

In Person: Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808

Join us for out seasonal storytelling spectacular! Festival favourite Emily Hennessey returns with a wonderful, wintery, family-friendly show…

Gather around, all you little pigeons young and old, as the harsh Winter winds blow. It’s time to wrap up warm, light the samovar, sip tea, forget the world outside and listen to stories…

 In a tiny wooden house, a little candle dances, casting mysterious shadows.

A girl is sent into the forest where Father Frost breathes his icy breath across the oak trees.

Meanwhile, a golden feather shimmers on the path, dropped by the mythical Firebird. Who will find it?

And when turnips go missing and a sneezing goat appears, will life ever be the same again?

 

Join performance storyteller, Emily Hennessey, for a wild and wonderful Winter’s journey through a world of Old Peter’s Russian Tales, collected by Arthur Ransome.

Suitable for old and young alike.

(Recommended minimum age 8+)

★★★★★ “an outstanding performance storyteller” The Latest

★★★★ “Emily Hennessey is such a mesmerising storyteller”  Everything Theatre

 EMILY HENNESSEY is a bold and dynamic performance storyteller. Emily’s work is often described as intelligently composed and beautifully performed, while her storytelling style is said to be warm, captivating, bold and witty, delighting audiences of all ages.

Emily has performed at venues and festivals in India, Iceland, Japan, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Germany and Belgium. Recent UK performances include the Soho Theatre, the Royal Opera House, Shakespeare’s Globe and the British Museum.

www.emilyhennessey.co.uk

 

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IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT!

litfest logo
Lancaster & District Festival Ltd (trading as Litfest) are seeking a new:
 
CHAIR OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES
 
Information
 
Litfest, Lancaster is a Lancaster-based literature organisation that has been presenting festivals and literature-based events since 1978 and is the third oldest literature festival in England. It has a long and varied history during which it has been supported by Arts Council England, Lancashire County Council and Lancaster City Council.
 
Litfest has, in common with so many mid-range arts organisations, seen its funding base diminished and now benefits from continued support from Lancaster City Council. The organisation has re-imagined itself to adjust to these changes and is now led, managed and run by its volunteer board with some paid part-time support.
 
Litfest is in a phase of re-development, re-focus and renewal; looking forwards to embrace new technologies and new visions. It is a time for new leadership and we are looking to appoint a Chair of the Board of Trustees to provide that leadership.
 
For further details and information pack please contact:
Louise Cross on office.manager@litfest.org
 
To book an informal discussion contact chair@litfest.org
Deadline: 3rd December 2018
Interviews: Monday 10th December.
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The Lost Words Litfest Crowdfunder – Coming soon!

As our 40th festival approaches, we at Litfest felt it was more important than ever to give back to our local community, in particular to the booklovers of tomorrow – our community’s children. Inspired by similar initiatives across the country and particularly by Jackie Morris’ fantastic event at Litfest 2018, we are delighted to announce this forthcoming project.

In the lead up to our March festival, Litfest will be aiming to crowdfund the purchase of one copy of The Lost Words for each school in the Lancaster and Morecambe district! The practicalities of undertaking this project are still ongoing so please watch this space for details on the launch and how you can contribute!

In the meantime you can read more about The Lost Words here and also more about similar crowdfunding efforts here.

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Thursday November 15th 7:30pm – The Big Blind

Venue: The Storey Auditorium, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, Lancashire, LA1 1TH

Tickets: £12/£10

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online: VIC Ticketbox

In Person: Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808

The ever popular combination of Dominic, Bridget and Leif return to Lancaster with their latest production, join us for a night of stunning storytelling and music….

A boy stands on a lakeshore. Behind him: all he’s ever known. Ahead: a chance for love but a higher chance of death. He’s had a happy life, and a sheltered one. But his father gambled away that life, the debt cannot be paid in money and it won’t be his father who pays. Childhood is over…

Dominic, Bridget & Leif combine storytelling and music in a playful and gripping performance. They bring to life an ancient full-bloodied fairy tale for modern audiences, weaving versions from Norway, Scotland, Ireland and India with contemporary Scandinavian folk music. Through it they explore the consequences for the young when older generations fail to make adult decisions.

“…magical, haunting… a truly inspired performance… makes you sparkle from the inside out…” oneandother.com on The Devil’s Purse.

“…a bewitching fusion of storytelling and music that takes theatre right back to its origins… Bridget Marsden and Leif Ottosson beautifully fuse enchanting Nordic music with Dominic Kelly’s prose… complementing and accenting the narrative seamlessly.” ayoungertheatre.com on The Devil’s Purse

Dominic Kelly – Storyteller

Bridget Marsden – Violin 

Leif Ottosson – Accordion

Dominic Kelly is a performance storyteller with an international reputation for dynamic, powerful and entertaining work. Venues include The Barbican, National Theatre, Soho Theatre, Teater Pero, The Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, The British Museum and festivals around the world from India to the Arctic Circle.  He directs storytelling performances for Rikscenen, Norway’s national folk arts centre and teaches storytelling at Stockholm’s Royal College of Music. He has directed storytelling programmes for festivals including Litfest, Larmer Tree Festival and Solfest. He is an associate member of Fabula Storytelling company in Stockholm. Dominic has also helped thousands of young people find their voice as storytellers, and has trained hundreds of theatre and education professionals in using storytelling in their work. He is based in the Lake District, UK and Stockholm, Sweden.

Bridget Marsden (violin) and Leif Ottosson (accordion) are two rising young stars of the Swedish folk scene.  Together they form a duo with an almost telepathic musical interplay and a unique sense of the figurative and narrative qualities of Nordic folk music. The duo was formed in 2009, after meeting at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm. What began as a common interest in really tight traditional Scandinavian tune playing soon landed in an exploration of spacious improvisation and filmic soundscapes. Their debut album ‘Mountain Meeting’, which presents both original and traditional material, was released in 2015 on the Swedish independent label Playing With Music.

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Where We Land: a storied isle – Jacqueline Harris Storytelling Tour

Wednesday 4th, Thursday 12th & Thursday 19th July

Time: 7:30pm

Venues: The Storey Auditorium Lancaster (4/7), The Boo – Rossendale (12/7) & Brigsteer Village Hall (19/7)

Tickets: £9/£8 

Tickets for the 12/7 event are available through The Boo.

Tickets for the 4/7 and 19/7 performances are available now and can be booked in advance in a variety of ways:

Online: Through VICticketbox – 4/7 and 19/7

In person: Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By Phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808

(Advance booking fees may apply)

Tickets will also be available to purchase on the door of each event via cash or cheque.

A storyteller once left Lancashire to spend three years on the Isle of Arran off the west coast of Scotland: these are the stories she found there…

Join us for this new touring production from sensational storyteller Jacqueline Harris, who has previously delighted our audiences with productions such as  ‘In Skriker’s Footsteps’ and ‘East o’the Sun, West o’the Moon’. This new show  will be an intimate and immersive multimedia experience featuring projection, both a live and recorded musical score/soundscape and interactive, spontaneous storytelling. From mermaids to the mackerel lottery, prepare to be spellbound… This tour is brought to you by Litfest with support from Lancaster City Council  and Arts Council England.

Suitable for ages 12+

Jacqueline Harris writes, tells and dramatizes stories based around folkloric and mythical themes, weaving audio, film, projection and community stories into her live performances. Her productions have toured across the UK including Edinburgh Fringe, Dingle, Spotlight Rural Touring and Hebden Bridge: Shaggy Dog Storytellers.

For this project Jacqueline will be collaborating with freelance film maker Graham Kaye and composer, music producer and sound designer Lee Affen.

Lee Affen is a composer, music producer and sound designer from Manchester, now based in Lancaster. His passion for music has led him to work in bands, write for singers and compose for theatre, film and dance. Alongside this, Lee also delivers music workshops and has worked on community based arts events and festivals around the UK.

Graham Kay is a filmmaker and has been freelance since 2003. Prior to that he was a teacher in secondary and further education.

Lancaster City Council Logolottery_Logo_BlackRGB

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Thanks for the memories

Our annual literature festival is over for another year – thank you so much to all the artists, volunteers, board members, the teams at the venues, Lancaster and Morecambe VICs and of course to our wonderful audiences.

We’re looking ahead now to our 40th festival running throughout March next year – we’re hoping to do something very special to celebrate the festival’s long and varied history! Keep your eyes peeled for updates!

In the meantime there’s still more to come from us…

  • more superb storytelling coming up next month on 24/4 – The Gods and Monsters Show’ by Pandvani108
  • the Litfest podcast remains free to download and we’ve also re-uploaded the flax series of poetry walks – why not take advantage of the coming of spring and take a walk through Lancaster’s Literary Life?
  • we’re currently in the process of rearranging Debs Newbold’s storytelling event and the snowed off launch weekend – we hope to have new dates soon and will contact all those who had previously bought tickets.
  • and finally – keep your eyes peeled for some news coming your way about the very special otter from Jackie Morris’ superb live-painting at her event on Saturday 23rd…
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Post festival Cool Down – The Gods and Monsters Show: Pandvani108

Tuesday 24th April     7pm

Venue: The Storey Auditorium, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH

Tickets: £12/£10

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online: VIC Ticketbox

In Person: Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808


Take a trip to the underworld… 

Walk into the fire…

And don’t look back….

The stage is set for a high voltage mythological mash-up!

Combining performance storytelling, music and song, Pandvani108 turn on the epic jukebox to bring us a wild night of unbowdlerised global myth and epic, in untamed short form style. Gods, monsters, giants, warriors & divas from Greece, Ireland, the Scandinavian North, the Indian heat and far beyond, are all hauled centre stage. 

Far from sedate spoken word, this is a brash & exuberant cinema of the imagination, inspired by a 3,000 year old epic singing tradition and with more deities than you can shake a stick at. Encounter the Short Myth Massive – live and irresistibly direct! 

‘playful, powerful, dynamic…a highlight!’  BEYOND THE BORDER FESTIVAL

‘Stellar!’  SMUGGLERS FESTIVAL

‘Phenomenal’  WONDERFUL BEAST

‘seriously shit hot!’ AUDIENCE – SECRET GARDEN PARTY

Performance storytelling by  BEN HAGGARTY, EMILY HENNESSEY & MIKAEL OBÉRG

Music by  SHEEMA MUKHERJEE & JONAH BRODY

Runtime approximately 1 hr 50 mins + 15 minute interval

 

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Springfest Podcast

As part of our first Litfest Springfest, two days of the very best in nature writing,  we bring you another exclusive—Litfest 2018’s podcast!

Free to download here, come and join us on a literary walk around the streets of Lancaster. Exercise your mind along with your legs! Inés has also kindly drawn a map of the route which can be downloaded here.

Writers featured in the podcast include  Yvonne Battle-Felton, Naomi Krüger, Jess Gofton, Jo Baker, Sarah Hymas, Mike Barlow, Monica Guerrasio, Mandy Banon, Zoe Lambert, Tom Flemons (owner of the Atticus bookshop), Rebecca Bilkau, Carol Coates, Eddie Robson, Claire Dean, Andrew M. Hurley

Edinburgh, London, York, Manchester… many of these cities are known from their vibrant literary scene but, what about Lancaster? This hidden gem of the North West hosted the very first creative writing programme in the country, and this shouldn’t surprise anyone, since witchcraft, the Jacobite revolution, slavery and the mysterious tides of the river Lune have been inspiring writers for centuries. Listen to their stories when you walk around the narrow alleys of Lancaster – and discover the secrets of the city that lies between Morecambe Bay and the ancient mountains of the Lake District.

Ines

Inés G. Labarta (Madrid, 1992) is a writer, illustrator and associate lecturer in Creative Writing. Her publications include a trilogy of novels – Los Pentasónicos (Edebé 2008-2010) – and two novellas – McTavish Manor (Holland House, 2016) and Kabuki (Dairea, 2017). She’s currently doing a Creative Writing PhD at Lancaster University. She loves podcasting, hiking, and all the things weird.

The music included in the podcast is ‘Horizon Liner’ by Blue Dot Sessions

If you enjoyed our 2018 podcast why not take a look at our previous series of guided poetic walks from Flax listen here with additional map and guide below.

map inside guide[22900] guide for walks[22899]

 

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STOP PRESS: LITFEST OPENING WEEKEND POSTPONED: ARTISTS SNOWED IN!

Litfest are very sorry to announce that the artists involved in our Fantastic Beasts Launch Night and Saturday’s YA Day have ALL been snowed in by the Beast from the East! All three artists live in the North of the UK (Cumbria, Northumberland and Scotland) and, whilst the conditions in Lancaster are milder, are unable to forge through the snow to make it this far South!

As a result of this we have been forced to postpone the opening weekend of events. ‘Harry Potter’s Fantastic Beasts: an evening with Olivia Lomenech Gill’ and both events on YA Day are in the process of being rearranged for later in the year and we hope to release a new series of dates soon.

We will be contacting all those who have prebooked in the coming hours to make them aware of the postponement and to offer a refund. Again, we are very sorry to have to do this but we are at the mercy of nature and hope to still see you at the rest of the festival!!

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Dear Festival-goers, welcome to Litfest’s 2018 programme…

To download a PDF Programme click here:

2018 PDF Programme

This year we bring you a month-long programme packed with incredibly varied events!

The 2018 festival launches on a truly ‘Fantastic’ evening at Lancaster Castle’s Shire Hall. Olivia Lomenech Gill—illustrator of JK Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – will give us a fascinating insight into the Wizarding World. Next it’s YA Day, combining a fascinating cross-genre event with author and playwright Cathy Forde and an illuminating talk on the world of vlogging with Hannah Hodgson.

In week two we celebrate the North’s independent presses. Kevin Duffy from Bluemoose talks about the complicated process of publishing a legacy work, Comma Press brings acclaimed writers Martyn Bedford and Sean O’Brien to Lancaster for a Short Story Showcase, Heidi James reads from her new novel So The Doves and we finish on an exclusive panel of the Independent Publishers themselves, giving you a special insight into their industry.

In our third week we partner once more with Spotlight and More Music to bring you a bumper edition of this Lancaster ‘arts scene’ stalwart. The evening will feature astonishing new talent Alabaster dePlume alongside firm favourite Ian Marchant. The next day we have a truly wonderful day of poetry, featuring three independent presses— Oversteps, Beautiful Dragons and Wayleave—alongside two double bills; Kate Fox and Rhiannon Hooson, then Philip Gross and Katharine Towers.

Our final week begins with the return of Andrew Michael Hurley reading from his much anticipated second novel Devil’s Day. We continue with a new edition to our festival programme  — Litfest Springfest — a two day celebration of nature writing featuring

Jim Crumley, Kathleen Jamie, Paul Evans and Jackie Morris. We also bring you another Litfest first; a podcast literary walk around Lancaster, created by Inés G. Labarta.

Last but certainly not least, our festival finale is a family friendly storytelling event featuring Swedish troll tales in a brand new performance from festival favourite Dominic Kelly.

We look forward to seeing you in March.

Jacqueline Greaves

Chair, Litfest Board of Trustees

 

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Harry Potter’s Fantastic Beasts: An evening with Olivia Lomenech Gill

Friday 2nd March 7pm

Venue:  Shire Hall, Lancaster Castle, Castle Parade, Lancaster

Tickets: £12 Full/ £10 Concession

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online: VIC Ticketbox

In Person: Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808


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The magical worlds conjured up by J. K. Rowling have enchanted readers for over two decades. Litfest are pleased to be launching this year’s programme with a very special event with Olivia Lomenech Gill,  illustrator of the new coffee table edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.  

Set in the historic Shire Hall at Lancaster Castle, this is a not-to-be-missed event for all fans of the books, films and anyone interested in illustration. Olivia will offer a behind-the-scenes insight into the creation of this extraordinary book, her life and work and some truly fantastic beasts. 

 Cosplay is welcome at this event.  

Studio I photo - Copy (2)

‘There is a wildwood spirit about Olivia’s work. She seems to be in touch with an inventiveness that everyday life knocks out of most people, as we toil through adulthood. She knows it’s not easy to keep that spirit alive and, Consequently, there is a determined joy in her work, a playfulness with hidden gravity.

Animals and children are Olivia’s touchstones, all living creatures in fact, in their various landscapes. There are some imagined beasts too, but living ones triumph. Olivia calls herself ‘an untaught artist and accidental illustrator’. Perhaps that’s her secret. Her work speaks to everyone, unforced, and full of soul’. Kathleen Jamie, poet.

Olivia lives and works in Northumberland, UK. http://www.oliviagill.com/

 

 

 

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YA Day: Cathy Forde – Story to Stage

Saturday 3rd March 2pm

Venue:  The Gallery, The Dukes, Moor Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1QE

Tickets:  £6 per event or SPECIAL OFFER YA COMBO £10 for both events

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online here (single ticket event) or here (YA Combo ticket)

In Person: Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808


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Young Adult fiction has seen a real boom in recent years and Litfest are delighted to welcome acclaimed novelist Cathy Forde to speak as part of our programme.  Known for gritty and uncompromising prose that leaves readers thinking long after the final pages of her books are finished, Cathy has also worked with National Theatre Scotland on Theatre for young people.

In this session, she will discuss her bestselling novels Fat Boy Swim and The Drowning Pond exploring the journey of adapting these from novels to the stage.  A fascinating talk that will be of interest to writers and all interested in drama.

Cathy F

Cathy Forde’s breakthrough novel, Fat Boy Swim, was shortlisted for the Booktrust Teenage Prize and Blue Peter’s ‘Book I Couldn’t Put Down.’ It won the inaugural Grampian Book Award in 2004, and in 2014 was voted their ‘Winner of Winners’.

Cathy has adapted Fat Boy Swim for the theatre, commissioned by National Theatre of Scotland. Her novels Skarrs and The Drowning Pond won Scottish Arts Council book awards, and Dead Men Don’t Talk was shortlisted for a Scottish Children’s Book Award .

Cathy is an experienced public speaker and leads many workshops in creative writing and drama. She was the virtual writer-in-residence for the Scottish Booktrust  and is mentor to young writers at Toonspeak in Glasgow. http://cathyforde.co.uk/

 

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YA Day: Hannah Hodgson: The World of vlogging

Saturday 3rd March 3:15pm

Venue: The Gallery, The Dukes, Moor Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1QE

Tickets: £6 per event or SPECIAL OFFER YA COMBO £10 for both events

Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!

Online here (Single event ticket) or here (YA Combo ticket)

In Person: Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor Information Centres

By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808


Ever wondered how to take the plunge and start a Bookish YouTube channel? Or maybe you already have, but wonder how to build up a relationship with publishers, viewers or authors themselves? In this talk and Q&A session Hannah Hodgson will be revealing everything she has learned (sometimes the hard way) to get you on your way towards starting a YouTube channel. She will be discussing everything from how to approach publishers for free books, how to manage your time when you have a serious illness or many commitments and how to get yourself out there using Twitter and other social media platforms.

Most importantly, Hannah will be talking about how to enjoy yourself in your new online diary. Her favourite thing about her channel is the fact that her viewers feel like her friends – which means that she has avoided social isolation due to her disability. There will also be a Q and A session, where you can ask Hannah anything, from why she started her channel to what editing software she uses. 

HH

Hannah Hodgson started her YouTube channel in June 2017. She quickly gained over 1.6k followers.

www.youtube.com/c/HannahHodgson

She reviews books and poetry collections on her channel; and also discusses her ill health to try and raise awareness of seriously unwell young people. Her first poetry pamphlet is due to be published by Wayleave Press in 2018 and she will be appearing in their showcase event ‘Wayleave presents…‘ on Saturday 17th March.