Now in its 38th year, the Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival has built a reputation of excellence in bringing world-class theatre, music, dance, comedy and the spoken word to venues throughout the region. This is delivered via its 10-day festival at the end of May each year and year-round through its successful touring project, Dumfries and Galloway Arts Live, which piloted in 2016.
Last year’s festival was the most successful, extensive and diverse to date with 85 performances in 48 venues across the entire region: from the grand setting of the Easterbrook Hall, to one of Scotland’s smallest rural stages, the Swallow Theatre. Many 2016 shows sold out and more venues and local performing artists were involved than ever before.
Festival chair, Ken Gouge (pictured), said: “We are proud to say that Dumfries and Galloway has the largest and most diverse rural touring performing arts festival in the whole country. We intend to keep it that way in 2017 with a fascinating and high quality programme of more shows in more places.”
An important aspect of the festival’s work involves nurturing young performing artists and audiences and young people are encouraged to take an active part in the performing arts across the region as well as supporting the development of emerging local talent.
Last year, five events in the festival staged and promoted by young people and 1,038 young people attended 27 workshops led by visiting professional performing artists.
Helping to continue the year-on-year success of the organisation, the festival board comprises a diverse group of skilled and experienced individuals who all have a keen interest in performing arts and a vision to carry on delivering the best quality experience to every part of the region.
Ken said: “We are fortunate enough to have an excellent group of festival board members who, combined, cover a wide range of skills and most parts of the region.
“That said, we should be delighted to widen our scope and welcome more people on board who will represent their corner of Dumfries and Galloway and bring their good ideas to the table.
“Wherever you live in Dumfries and Galloway, your contribution of skill and knowledge would make a difference, particularly at a local level.
“We have ambitious plans to enhance the performing arts across the region throughout the year – and we need you.”