Festival’s Top Tenuous


The 45th Rye Arts Festival is just over a week away, launching on Saturday, September 17 and running through to Saturday, October 1. There is a packed programme of more than 60 events over the fortnight, so there should be something for everyone. At first glance the varied range of events, from a talk about Britain’s world class role in the consumption of booze to a talk about Rye Harbour Nature reserve by the ever fascinating warden Dr Barry Yates, suggests there is no over-arching theme running through the fortnight.

Maybe not, other than being a series of high quality events with world class performers, but in deference to the Chris Evans show on BBC Radio 2, here is a Top Tenuous List of Events to consider.


1. Merry Christmas, Mr Lawrence
This film starring David Bowie is being screened at 8pm on Sunday, September 25 at the Kino Digital cinema in Lion Street.

2. Caravan shorts                                                                                                                                                                        3. The Kino Digital courtyard will host two short (each 15 minutes) plays which are being performed from midday to 8pm on Saturday, September 17. In a theatre. A small caravan!

3. Terakaft
“Caravan” in the Tuareg language of tamashek is Terakaft, and the fabulous Tuareg band by this name, who are exiled from the Sahara, will play desert blues at a not-to-be-missed gig at 7:30pm on Saturday, September 24 at The Milligan Theatre in Rye College.

4. Purple Rain
The first ever feature film in the tamashek language was released in 2015 with the title “Akounak Tedalat Taha Tazoughai”– which translated means “Rain the Colour of Red with a little bit of Blue”. The film is in direct homage to Purple Rain (tamashek doesn’t have the word purple), and the loose bio-pic of Prince, the musical genius from Minneapolis, is being screened at the Kino on Wednesday, September 21 at 8pm

Tzu-Yin Huang
Tzu-Yin Huang

5. Tzu-Yin Huang
Although from Taiwan, Tzu-Yin Huang, the winner of the 2016 Hasting International Piano Concerto Competition, currently lives and studies in Michigan, like Minneapolis in the Mid-West. Catch her concert on Wednesday, September 21 at 7:30pm

6. Anna Szalucka
Like Tzu-Yin, Anna is young, female and plays the piano! Her concert is at 1pm on Monday, September 19. Currently living and studying in London, Anna is from Poland.

7. Wihan String Quartet
Poland shares a 796km border with the Czech Republic, home to the Wihan String Quartet, who are masters of their country’s composers and their programme on Thursday, September 29 at St Thomas, Winchelsea, at 7:30pm, includes a piece by Leos Janacek.

Anna Szalucka
Anna Szalucka

8. Anthony Marwood and Aleksandar Madsar
The British violinist and co-director of the Peasmarsh Chamber Music Festival, Anthony Marwood plays a Janacek piece with his favoured accompanist the Russian pianist Aleksandar Madsar on Tuesday, September 20 at 7.30pm in St Mary’s Church.

9. Rye Harbour Nature Reserve
Also visiting Rye from Russia are thousands of starlings, which whirl in the skies over the Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, whose warden Dr Barry Yates will give a fascinating illustrated talk about the Reserve at the George Hotel on Thursday, September 22 at 3:30pm.

10. Benjamin West RA – talk by Loyd Grossman
The highly influential late 18th and early 19th century American-born artist, who revolutionised painting in England during his life, is the subject of a talk by the former “Through the Keyhole” TV presenter with a mid-Atlantic accent. The link with Dr Barry Yates? Tenuous. But both talks are in the ballroom at the George!

Loyd Grossman
Loyd Grossman
Alexander Madzar
Alexander Madzar

At the time of going to press there were still tickets available for all these events. Go to the website for more information and to book tickets online  .

Photos: courtesy of Rye Arts Festival

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