The Broadway Arts Festival (www.broadwayartsfestival.com), which celebrates the Cotswold village’s artistic heritage, has unveiled a fantastic line-up for this year’s event (9 to 17 June 2012), which focuses on the work of John Singer Sargent RA and the Broadway Colony*, featuring artist and garden designer Alfred Parsons RA.
The highlight of the 2012 Festival is “Country Gardens: John Singer Sargent RA, Alfred Parsons RA and their contemporaries”, a major exhibition at Haynes Fine Art featuring over 20 oils and watercolours by renowned 19th-century artist and garden designer Alfred Parsons RA, together with important works by John Singer Sargent, Lawrence Alma Tadema, John Constable, Lucien Pissaro and many others. The exhibition will be unveiled by Britain’s favourite polymath Sir Roy Strong on Saturday 9 June and will remain open till the end of the Festival.
To honour this year’s featured artist and garden designer Alfred Parsons RA, the Festival is organising a national art competition with the theme of “In the Garden”. The winner will receive the John Singer Sargent Prize and £1,000 in cash, courtesy of sponsors John Noott Galleries of Broadway. The competition is open to all and the closing date for entries is 27April, with all work to be submitted by mid-May; more details can be found on the Festival website.
One of the aims of the Festival is to involve all age groups and, with that in mind, there will be a performance of Peter Pan, written by J M Barrie who was a member of the Broadway Colony. Peter Pan will be enacted by local school children, who will also be the stars of the Children’s Parade that takes place on Saturday 9 June; in line with the gardening element of this year’s Festival, all the children are being asked to make their own flowers to carry down the High Street.
In addition, a wide range of lectures, tours, art demonstrations and music recitals will take place during the nine-day festival. These will include a 9 June talk by Sir Roy Strong on “The Laskett Gardens”, the largest private formal gardens established in England since 1945, which he and his late wife, the designer Dr Julia Trevelyan Oman, have created from a four-acre field over the last four decades. On 12 June, there will be a violin concert performed by Michael Bochmann with harpist David Watkins in the 19th-century St Michael’s and All Angels Church. And garden/landscape historian Marion Mako will present a talk on Alfred Parsons, followed by a tour of the garden of Russell House, where American painter, sculptor and writer Francis D. Millet lived, and then a tour of the award-winning gardens originally designed by Parsons at Luggers Hall (13 & 14 June).
For more information, including a fully programme of events for the Broadway Arts Festival, please visit the website (www.broadwayartsfestival.com)
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