Gate To Southwell starts with acts including Le Vend Du Nord, Dervish, Ian Siegal and Spooky Men’s Chorale
Four days of music gets under way today with the start of the 15th Gate To Southwell Festival.
Taking place until Sunday, it will feature more than 50 local, national and international acts.
There will be roots, world, acoustic and folk acts across four stages, alongside ceilidhs, dance sides, comedy, street theatre, poetry, music workshops and children’s entertainment.
The annual festival, which is based in Kirklington, is expected to attract more than 5,000 visitors. A subsidised shuttle bus will run throughout the festival, linking the site to the centre of Southwell.
Canadian folk stars Le Vent Du Nord, Stornaway’s Peat & Diesel, Irish traditional music legends Dervish, top bluesman Ian Siegal and Australia’s Spooky Men’s Chorale are among the headliners.
They’ll be joined by top quality performers such as rising star Kathryn Priddy, highly-rated singer and guitarist John Smith from Devon, American banjo and bass combo Truckstop Honeymoon, folk rockers Merry Hell and Celtic punkers Black Water County, footstompin’ fiddlers Noble Jacks, singer-songwriters Chris While & Julie Matthews, acclaimed ceilidh band Blackbeard’s Tea Party, Birmingham’s Filkin’s Ensemble and more.
The four-day fiesta kicks off with a Blues Night starring the multi-award-winning Ian Siegal, supported by the Daniel Smith Blues Band and Kyla Brox.
There’s also a great local artists showcase today, featuring gentle singer-songwriter Robbie Singh, the diverse guitar skills of Ollerton’s Liam Johnson, original songs and covers from Malc Slater, the formidable charisma of Paul Carbuncle, acclaimed local duo Huson-Whyte, American roots folk and blues from Phil Ashmore and The Unit Five, strong country music from The Dolby Gang and blues-meets-soul-meets-punk in the shape of The Boutones.
Today ends with stomping Celtic punk, jigs and reels from The Silk Road.
Friday night features Hebri-dean headliners Peat & Diesel bringing their rousing, Celtic, stage show to Southwell.
Alongside them on the bill will be the critically-acclaimed and award-winning The Trials of Cato, plus the folk punk of Black Water County and rising star singer-songwriter Katherine Priddy.
Southwell’s favourite Canadians, Quebec folk heroes Le Vent Du Nord return to headline on Saturday night, promising bouncy dance tunes, five-part vocals and boundless joie de vivre.
Also high on Saturday’s bill are riotous eight-piece folk rockers, the aptly-named Merry Hell, infectiously danceable top ceilidh band Blackbeard’s Tea Party, innovative folk-electronica from India Electric Company, gentle neo folk from Fellow Pynins, all the way from Oregon USA, and classy singer-songwriting duo While & Matthews.
Aside from music workshops and dances, there will be children's entertainment from James The Jester and master storyteller Mark Fraser, of Walk The Lines, will be back with original and classic stories.
There is also the chance to get close to the White Post Farm animals, hands-on play with Out Of The Chicken Shed, Soul Sensory, Festival Fairies and Kids’ Music Workshops.
Most of the action takes place at the festival site at Kirklington, but there will also be ceilidhs in Steeples plus folk dancing on the streets of Southwell, and artists performing in local pubs such as The Final Whistle and The Hearty Goodfellow.
Day tickets are available.