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Great Northumberland Winter Festival events announced

The Great Northumberland Winter Festival was officially launched today with events taking place across the county.

A total of 20 events have received funding through the Northumberland Cultural Fund (NCF), led by the county council, and will be part of the Great Northumberland Winter Festival.

The Winter Festival follows a successful Great Northumberland summer programme and sees a total investment in cultural events this year from the council of £100k.

It supports new and diverse events taking place during the winter months and until March 2020 and showcases the wide variety of Northumberland’s arts and culture scene.

Highlights of the Festival include a contemporary dance performance at Woodhorn Museum inspired by some of the greatest names in Northumberland’s history.

Eliot Smith Dance will be presenting ‘Portraits of Courage,’ an informative contemporary dance work inspired by the genius and courage of William Armstrong, Emily Wilding Davison, Grace Darling, George Stephenson and will also premier a new performance inspired by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown.

The performances take place at Woodhorn Museum on 19 February 2020 (11.30 am and 2.00 pm) and have received £2,500 through NCF.

Eliot, Artistic Director at the dance company, said: “These performances are aimed to help visitors to engage with the story of what these people did for us in the past but also how we are still inspired by them today.

“We want to engage with visitors through the movement of dance and show how dance can be informative. It’s also about bringing dance to people who wouldn’t normally see something of this kind.

“We are delighted to be part of the Great Northumberland Winter Festival, as without this funding this event would not have been able to take place.”

Other highlights include the inaugural Festival of Flame at Hexham Abbey, which coincides with the town’s Christmas lights switch and will include a fire garden, an illuminated ancient pear tree, a giant tealight installation and the Abbey will also be lit by candlelight; the Festival of Arts in Bedlington which will celebrate the talent and skills of people living and working in Bedlington and a youth workshop project in Prudhoe with Mortal Fools.

Cllr Cath Homer, cabinet member for Culture, Arts, Leisure and Tourism said: “Our vision is to work with the cultural and arts sector to create “seasons of events” stimulated by Northumberland’s heritage and arts and make these events free and accessible for all.

“There are some really exciting events as part of the Great Northumberland Winter Festival which offer something for all interests and ages whilst showcasing the best Northumberland has to offer.

“As a council, we are committed to investing in Northumberland’s vibrant and diverse cultural scene and are thrilled to be helping to deliver these events for visitors and residents alike.”

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