The lovely lovely Priory Hall
This time of the year is insane but it’s one of the most exciting. Unfortunately it’s also the most stressful, more-so than during the festival itself, as now is the time it all has to come together. By September all the hard work will have been done and ‘all we have to do’ is manage and troubleshoot as it happens (sounds so easy when put like that) but it’ll only be successful if we get these two months right.
So what are you doing in these cold January days I hear one possibly slightly interested person ask.
Well. We’ve got two months before me and Dave lock ourselves in a room with enough coffee to swim in and programme the artists - this is one of my favourite parts of the year, where we start to curate the festival. Easter is a massive deadline for us then because in order to programme we have to have all the venues confirmed, we have to know exactly what our budget is, where the money is coming from and how big we reckon our audience will be - none of this stuff is easy or quick work. Promoting is, depressingly at times, all about risk - balancing that perfect festival that’s in your head with what you’ve actually got, or what you reckon you’ll have. The more work we put in now the closer septembers’ festival will be to what we really want to happen (we want it to be exciting, original, interesting and diverse, we want artists to be able to do what they want in the ideal spaces for their performance, we want audiences to have an amazing time and we want our beautiful venues to be happy). It’s like learning to juggle every year.
I’m incredibly pleased to also say that we’ve partnered up with Atkinson’s Coffee and their brand new space, Priory Hall (www.thecoffeehopper.com). We’ve got some mega plans for it both during the festival and very soon… watch this space. It’s a great opportunity for us to expand our range of top quality venues as well as have a venue with it’s very own Steinway grand piano :). We’re all very happy.
Also watch this space for more blogs from the entire festival team and news on events coming soon (Morecambe Jazz Club is the 13th March) and keep the artist submissions coming in.
Matt Robinson - Festival Director