Following two years of digital festivals, due to Covid 19, Huddersfield Literature Festival (HLF) has announced a series of live events between September and Christmas.
Primal Scream founder and frontman Bobby Gillespie heads up the Festival’s first event in the run up to the Kirklees Year of Music 2023. He will be recounting his life story up to the recording and release of the band’s masterpiece Screamadelica, as featured in his new autobiography Tenement Kid, on Tuesday 19 October.
The ‘Queen of Crime’ Val McDermid, arrives in Huddersfield on Friday 3 September. One of the biggest names in crime fiction, McDermid writes electrifyingly suspenseful novels filled with warmth, wit and vividly memorable characters.
HLF marks Black History Month with a special event on Saturday 9 October celebrating the life and work of Pulitzer and Nobel Prize-winner Toni Morrison, one of the greatest and most celebrated writers of her era, who passed away in August 2019.
Protecting the natural world has never been more vital and conservationist Laurence Rose describes his encounters with wildlife on Sunday 10 October. Laurence spent two years exploring the cultural roots of our relationship with the rest of nature in order to map out its future. From the magnificent white-tailed eagles of Orkney and Mull to the fascinating world of ants and crickets on the southern heaths, he describes his encounters with wildlife in exquisite language and vivid detail.
Creative Voices, a unique performance of music, song and spoken word, created in response to the Covid-19 pandemic takes place on Saturday 9 October. Through the autumn of 2020, four groups of local people came together online to discuss poetry and song, carry out writing exercises and form new communities to help with resilience through these challenging times. The results will be presented in the form of spoken word, guided by performance poet Michelle Scally Clarke, and songs created and shaped by musician Rachel Ireland and performed by a local choir and singer.
Spoken word events continue with Serendipity Creative Writers and the launch of their new poetry collection: A Serendipitous Anthology on Tuesday 12 October, plus a free writing for wellbeing workshop, open to all. Serendipity Creative Writers group works to break down the barriers of mental health and promotes wellbeing through mindfulness and creative writing.
Award-winning poets/writers Rose Condo and Michael Stewart give us their unique take on the world on Thursday 14 October. Rose takes her audience on a journey through her debut collection, After the Storm, with live musical accompaniment from Eleonora Rosca on the cello and keyboards. Michael will be discussing his latest novel Walking the Invisible, an acclaimed literary guide through the walks and nature of the Brontë sisters and their beloved Yorkshire.
Family events include free Storywalks on 3 and 4 September in Greenhead Park for children and adults inspired by The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris. On Sunday 5 September outdoor theatre company Frolicked presents the Stafflex Treasure Hunt in Huddersfield town centre, accompanied by the exotic Rubious Harmonious Singing Birds.
Previously programmed ‘sold-out’ events with The Yorkshire Shepherdess, Amanda Owen and a talk on the real life of Anne Lister, aka Gentleman Jack, have been rescheduled for the Autumn – see website for further details.
Festival Director Michelle Hodgson says: “It’s wonderful to be able to programme live events once again and we look forward to seeing our audiences face to face.
“The Festival now has Safer Event accreditation to ensure that the safety of performers, audiences, staff and volunteers will be the primary priority.”
Huddersfield Literature Festival is funded by Arts Council England and all booking details and information are on the Festival website: https://www.huddlitfest.org.uk/