By Torin Douglas
Tickets have gone on sale for the 55th Bedford Park Festival, which will take place in front of live audiences next month, after being held ‘at home’ and online last year because of the pandemic. The Festival – known as ‘Chiswick’s favourite fortnight’ – will run from June 12th to 27th in St Michael & All Angels Church and Parish Hall and the Chiswick Playhouse in Bath Road.
Top performers taking part include Downton Abbey star Phyllis Logan, West End diva Rosemary Ashe, musicians David Juritz, Mark Viner and Jonathan Dods, and sopranos Milly Forrest and Luci de Nordwall Cornish – all local residents, past or present.
Instead of the usual Green Days weekend, opposite Turnham Green tube station, the Festival will open with a Children’s Fancy Dress and Fun Day in St Michael’s Parish Hall, alongside the Bedford Park Summer Exhibition of artworks in the church. There will later be a Festival Fete in the grounds of the church as part of a weekend finale, with a Flower Festival, a song recital, the Festival Mass and Open Gardens.
“We’re delighted to be welcoming people back to our arts events in person this year” said Fr Kevin Morris, vicar of St Michael & All Angels, which runs the Festival in aid of charities and its own work. “During the year of lockdown, we did our best to help people engage with the arts and local community events online, but it’s not the same as enjoying performances in person, with an audience around you.”
Seating will be limited, nonetheless, and people will be asked to observe social distancing rules at all Festival events, indoors and outside.
At Chiswick Playhouse, there will be ‘An Evening with Phyllis Logan’ (pictured with Fr Kevin when she opened the Festival in 2013), in which she will talk about the new Downton Abbey film currently being filmed, and other aspects of her life and career. She is a patron of the Chiswick Playhouse, and will talk to its executive director Mark Perry. So too will Torin Douglas, director of the Chiswick Book Festival, another patron of the Playhouse.
West End diva Rosemary Ashe will pay tribute to national treasure Dora Bryan, whose showbiz career spanned eight decades, from pantomime to Shakespeare, and Carry On films to a BAFTA winning role in A Taste of Honey. She promises fun, music & laughter with excerpts from Dora’s best known shows!
See more here chiswickcalendar.co.uk/bedford-park-festival-2021
Tickets can be bought online bedfordparkfestival.org/l/events
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