The Bath Festival LIVE 17-24 May 2021
CELEBRATING MUSIC AND BOOKS IN A BEAUTIFUL CITY
The Bath Festival live: from Monday 17 May – Monday 24 May 2021
The Bath Festival At Home online: from Friday 28 May 2021
The Bath Festival Finale Weekend: Saturday 7 – Sunday 8 August 2021
General sale for The Bath Festival opens on 13 April. Patrons and members priority booking begins from 7 April.
Tickets for The Bath Festival Finale Weekend are on sale now
Featuring The Gesualdo Six at the Roman Baths , Bryony Gordon, the Kanneh-Mason family, Adam Buxton, Mel Giedroyc, Tez Ilyas, Dr Rachel Clarke, Hollie McNish, Woke, Caroline Hirons, Concert for the People of Bath with Coco Tomita and Bath Philharmonia, Bridgerton and Frankenstein guided literature walks and many more events!
The Bath Festival is excited to return with its 2021 programme offering both live events from Monday 17 May to Monday 24 May, and online events with The Bath Festival At Home, a digital broadcast for audiences to experience at home.
The Bath Festival 2021 celebrates the best in music and books in a beautiful city, as it has done for more than 70 years. A diverse programme ranges from talks and discussions to poetry, concerts and theatre.
Come what may, this year’s festival will showcase Bath for a global audience, presenting events, some of which, will be filmed in some of the city’s most historic and glorious historic buildings, including the iconic 18th century Assembly Rooms, Bath Abbey, the Roman Baths and The Forum. Those who may not be able to gather in person will be able to enjoy The Bath Festival At Home selection of events at their own leisure with a feast for the eyes, ears and minds.
Unlike many other festivals who have to construct their own festival villages, The Bath Festival is able to use the city’s historic buildings. These were built by previous generations to house large gatherings, so they are adaptable for use adhering to socially distanced rules, with their spacious rooms and high ceilings. Audience and artists’ safety is paramount. Bath Festivals has been accredited with a Good To Go status by Visit England.
Our live events will see some of the brightest talent from the worlds of music and books, along with discussions about the big issues of our time. Listen to best-selling authors and experts in their field sharing their experiences.
The Bath Festival 2021 programme highlights:
• Dr Rachel Clarke, author of Breathtaking, an unflinching insider’s account of medicine in the time of coronavirus.
• Ted Hughes Award winner poet Hollie McNish, whose live readings are mesmerising. Hollie will be reading from her much-anticipated new collection: Slug…and other things I’ve been told to hate.
• Working from Home: How to Survive and Thrive. 2020 saw huge numbers of us suddenly adapt to entirely new ways of working. Speaker, career coach and journalist Harriet Minter shares funny, practical advice, hard-won tricks, tips and tools.
• Comedian Tez Ilyas talks about his life as a young British Muslim growing up in a time of race riots, fear and prejudice.
• The unique setting of the Roman Baths will provide the atmospheric backdrop for a concert from the internationally acclaimed vocal group The Gesualdo Six.
• Two series of guided walks, one to explore the influences on Mary Shelley that inspired her to start writing Frankenstein during her time in Bath, the other, commissioned by The Bath Festival, is a delicious Regency romp through the streets in the footsteps of the Netflix sensation Bridgerton.
• Kadiatu Kanneh-Mason, mother of seven young classical musicians, the Kanneh-Masons, brings two of her celebrated children to perform as she talks about what it is like to raise such a remarkable family, following the release of her memoir House of Music: Raising the Kanneh-Masons.
• Much-loved entertainer Mel Giedroyc talks to Francesca Beauman about her debut novel The Best Things, a big-hearted story of a family on the brink, that’s as warm and witty as Mel herself.
• The Bath Festival Orchestra, created to foster emerging talent in classical music, will play in Bath Abbey and at Green Park Station. The orchestra’s concert will be the first live performance in Bath Abbey, which has been closed for major refurbishment for two years. This performance will be recorded by BBC Radio 3.
• The Sunday Times No1 bestseller Caroline Hirons, Skincare Queen and beauty blogger with over 1 million social media followers, will be sharing some of the billion-pound beauty industry’s secrets as she explores the facts, the myths and the best way to get good skin on any budget.
• The Bath Festival Finale Weekend, an open-air festival in the heart of beautiful Bath has been re-scheduled from 2020 and will now take place over the weekend of 7 and 8 August 2021. This family-friendly music festival will see McFly, supported by Scouting for Girls, topping the bill on the Saturday, while on the Sunday UB40 featuring Ali Campbell and Astro will be supported by Billy Ocean. There will be a host of other stars, up and coming artists and local talent as well. Tickets are available NOW here
The Bath Festival At Home – a digital experience
Live events will be filmed and will be available digitally post festival as The Bath Festival At Home which will include a visual celebration of the historic city of Bath. Audiences at home will be able to dip into the programme at their leisure and enjoy The Bath Festival experience in the comfort of their own homes. The digital festival will also showcase Bath’s architecture and history to the watching world. Look out too for Bath Reads, an innovative Bath Festivals project supported by the Mayor of Bath Cllr Manda Rigby and the Charter Trustees of the City of Bath, which involves the work of local authors and reaches out to involve book groups and individuals who love to read.
Ian Stockley, Bath Festivals’ chief executive, said: “The Bath Festivals team has worked long and hard to bring audiences a festival for our times. They have meticulously planned how to work under current government guidelines, protecting the safety of our audiences and artists. During this shared experience of the pandemic the role of the arts has more than ever highlighted what makes us human and how vital music and books are to our lives. We are very proud to present this unique hybrid programme which will both delight live audiences but also showcase our World Heritage city to the rest of the watching world.”
General sale for The Bath Festival 2021 opens on Tuesday 13 April. Patrons and members priority booking begins from Wednesday 7 April. Find out more about becoming a member here
A huge thank you to our Festival sponsors
Bath Festivals would like to thank its partners and sponsors, particularly media partners The Bath Magazine and Scala Radio and sponsors Bath Spa University, Bath BID, Bath Rec, Wessex Water, B&NES, Hallmark Care Homes, Kingswood School and Arts Council England. Award-winning independent Bath-based Mr B’s Emporium is the festival’s official bookseller.
Festival partner Bath Spa University opens SparkFest on Monday 10 May. This annual festival offers audiences a month-long programme of creativity and innovation with a range of live and digital performances, workshops and talks by students, alumni, staff and industry collaborations from the Bath School of Music and Performing Arts. SparkFest is produced by Bath Spa Productions.
In response to ever-changing guidelines The Bath Festival is adopting a flexible approach to its programming. Concerts by Patti Smith, John Grant and the Paraorchestra led by conductor Charles Hazlewood, along with La Voix and comedian Rachel Parris have been rescheduled for later in the year and for 2022.
With thanks to our sponsors and partners: