Why all the town’s a stage
ONE of Barnaby’s unique features is the way it uses the town itself as its stage.
GIGS, AND GIGGLES, IN CHURCHES
Flicking through the Barnaby brochure you may have noticed how many public spaces and quirky nooks and crannies are being used as venues, but also how many churches feature.
This year we have events in St Michael’s Church in Market Place, disused Christ Church on Bridge Street, King Edward Street Chapel hidden away on that road, the United Reformed Church on Park Green and for this first time the newly renovated Townley Street Chapel tucked away behind.
These churches will host music of all sorts, cabaret, comedy, cartoonery, visual art, political debate, talks, workshops and for the first time specially commissioned family theatre.
With so few traditional venues in the town centre and their limited size, the festival can only happen because of the participation of the churches – all of whose buildings are listed. The events bring new audiences into these sacred, heritage spaces and the festival is hugely grateful to the churches for generously taking what is in some cases quite a bold step – a leap of faith even – to work with us in this way.
The highlight this year will be the transformation of Christ Church into the secret laboratory of an eccentric scientist for The Astronomer’s Story – not to be missed!
FROM BARNABY FEAST TO TREACLE MARKET
Barnaby Festival is delighted to announce that Jane Munro has agreed to be our Founding Patron. Jane was one of the original instigators of Barnaby, convinced the town needed a festival to celebrate its heritage and creative talents and develop a sense of identity.
At the first festival in 2010 Jane wanted to bring back a food market – we called it the Barnaby Feast.
It’s hard to believe now how difficult it was to attract producers to take a stall – I remember being told by an artisan baker at a Farmers Market in Bakewell that a similar thing in Macclesfield would never work!
Having proved there was a market for another market, Jane Munro and Debbie Quinn – another of that first volunteer team – went onto establish the hugely successful Treacle market which takes place on the last Sunday of the month. One of Barnaby Festival’s best spin-offs!
Jane is still heavily involved in Barnaby: don’t miss The Crimplene Heritage Museum or the Treacle Take-over of The Maccles-field on Sunday, 25 June.
Find out more at barnabyfestival.org.uk or pick up a brochure from the library, railway station or visitor information centre.
●» Christ Church will be transformed into a secret laboratory