2017 Festival programme preview
This year the Festival begins a little earlier when, in association with the Swansea Big Weekend, The Swansea Fringe is re-instated after an absence of 20 years. Over three days (Friday 29 September to Sunday 1 October) Swansea’s High Street will be alive with comedy, bands, poetry and performance.
The Swansea International Festival begins on 4 October at the Great Hall, Swansea University, with the return of Swansea’s favourite soprano Elin Manahan Thomas, who will present songs from Wales and the wider world, including the première of a new song cycle My Own Country, commissioned by the Festival and composed and played by pianist Jeffrey Howard.
Throughout the Festival there is a wealth of Welsh bred and International talent. On the Centenary of the Russian Revolution, St Petersburg Symphony Orchestra perform their only concert in Wales; The Dunvant and Morriston RFC Male Choirs join forces for a memorable evening; BBC NOW perform two concerts – the first conducted by Tecwyn Evans and featuring harpist Catrin Finch, followed by their ever-popular Family Concert.
There are recitals by pianist Llŷr Williams, organist Jonathan Hope and Orpheus Sinfonia with cellist Thomas Carroll; conversations with both Michael Heseltine and Stephen Johnson and appearances from the Society of Strange Instruments; percussionist Joby Burgess; and improvised gong-playing with Philip Corner. Along with visual art displays, lunchtime talks, an education project on The Bells of Santiago, a dedicated Primary Schools Music Festival, and a programme of live music and events at Morriston Hospital, this year’s Festival truly has something for everyone.