Family Arts Festival will return for 2014

Organisers of the first Family Arts Festival, which made its debut on 18 October, have revealed it will return next year.

Children and parents take part in the first Family Arts Festival
Children and parents take part in the first Family Arts Festival

This year’s nationwide event, which finished on 3 November, received backing from Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber and Zoë Wanamaker. It involved more than 1,900 events and over 900 organisations, and was set up as part of the Family Arts Campaign, which aims to provide more opportunities for families to engage with theatre.

The 2014 event will take place from 17 October until 2 November.

David Brownlee, Family Arts Campaign director, said: "It has been fantastic to see so many families across the UK take part in the festival in its very first year. It truly has shown what a huge appetite there is for events that people can enjoy together as a family, but the festival was only the beginning.

"We hope that arts organisations across the UK will continue to deliver exceptional family events and activities throughout their own programmes, and, with plans already underfoot for the Family Arts Festival 2014, there is a lot to look forward to."

This year’s UK-wide Family Arts Festival saw children and their familes take part in life drawing with sheep at the Royal Academy, London, and theatre for babies at Birmingham’s Rep theatre. It also saw the world premiere of Dragon, a Scottish/Chinese theatrical co-production in Inverness, and an operatic version of The Importance of Being Earnest take place in Derry.

Out of the Shadow, an amalgamation of dance and acrobatics, took centre stage in Cardiff, while percussion performers Stomp entertained crowds in Cornwall.

Festival partner and independent charity The Big Draw brought nearly 500 events to the festival in the first year of a two-year partnership.

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