A MUSICAL wave echoed through the streets of Bury St Edmunds as legions of community groups and school children hit the high notes to kick off the town’s annual Festival.
A 1,000-strong choir took to the stage at the Abbey Gardens on Friday to sing songs from the Americas, Africa, Europe, Asia and Australasia in front of 2,000 people.
It was a fitting taste of the cultural feast which has swept through the town with a varied array of concerts, theatre events and exhibitions.
Festival manager Nick Wells said: “The weekend was amazing with some beautiful and extraordinary high quality concerts.
“People really enjoyed Around the World with 1,000 Voices. The kids were ecstatic about being part of it.
“There was real excitement, enthusiasm and energy flying around.
“There was an incredible buzz in the town and it felt really good.”
Highlights of the 11-day event, which is in its 27th year, so far have included Jazz at the Movies, the Greene King Real Beer and Food Festival and pianist Imogen Cooper.
Crowds flocked to four hours of Street Theatre in the Abbey Gardens and groups of Shakespeare enthusiasts enjoyed a delightful tour of the town – learning secrets of the past while encountering actors, artists and musicians performing the Bard’s work.
Other concerts featured the Grimethorpe Colliery Band, The Music of Hoagy Carmichael, Britten Sinfonia and The Sixteen.
Meanwhile, the winner of the Bury Singwriting Competition Final was band The Facade.
When asked about ticket sales and attendance levels at events, Mr Wells said: “It’s been very good. I have my targets for every single concert and so far I’ve exceeded my targets on almost every concert.”
The festival draws to a close this weekend with gems such as African Sanctus and jazz musician Roberto Fonseca.
Top musicians will also perform spontaneous soundtracks to the world’s greatest silent films before Clare Teal and the BBC Big Band celebrate the legendary leading ladies of the big band stage.
For further details visit www.buryfestival.co.uk