We are now half way through the first week of our NINTH Fantastic Fun With Words festival. This is a major opportunity to engage local people with writers from across the West Midlands in their local Warwickshire Library. We have been so lucky to secure funding from the Arts Council and the services of a professional arts programmer to enable us to connect these published writers and storytellers with our public over so many years.
For every festival we arrange a week of school class visits. This year some 24 schools will have had 51 sessions between them across 12 of our libraries from Polesworth to Shipston. Every year it is quite a jigsaw puzzle to solve, but it is worth it for the great feedback from schools and writers.
We also welcome professional performers “Highly Sprung” and designers “Vortex Creates” to transform 5 of our libraries over the fortnight with a book-related theme. In these settings they give three performances each day of a wonderful interactive story. In 2016 we had a pirate take-over, this year it is “Mischievous Fairies and Long Tales“.
What will 2018 bring?
Well, we will need to go back to the Arts Council in the first instance. Hopefully we can continue the good work achieved over nine festivals so far, encouraging many more people of all ages into our libraries to discover the joy of reading and to let their imaginations fly.
Stella Thebridge, Festival Co-ordinator
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