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Freedom Stories

31st July 2021

Freedom Festival announces full 2021 programme

Today we are thrilled to bring you our full programme which runs from Friday 20 August to Sunday 5 September.

Gandini smashed 2 3

Today we are thrilled to bring you our full programme which runs from Friday 20 August to Sunday 5 September.

Hull will once again be able to delight in the joy that Freedom Festival brings to our City. There is circus, dance, theatre, film, audio walks and adventures, interactive digital installations, exhibitions, talks and a series of online events and content that will engage all ages across our extended 16 day Festival. 

The majority of our live events are free but ticketed to manage capacity and ensure the comfort and safety of our audience and teams.

We can also announce today the University of Hull as our principal partner for 2021 and we are delighted to be working in partnership with them this year. 

Tickets for all remaining events will be available at 10am on Saturday 7 August, so sit back, check out the programme and set your watches for our ticket release next week.

The full programme can be viewed here , but to give you a taste of what we have in store.

Starting on 20 August and running throughout the festival until 5 September:

  • squidsoup: Where There is Light. For the first time, Freedom Festival is presenting work in Ferens Art Gallery with this stunning sound and light installation sharing the voices and stories of sanctuary seeking communities from across the country.
  • Mark Copeland: 21 Remarkable People and several others of passing interest. Come with us on a guided tour around a pop-up gallery that has bizarrely appeared in the closed Hull Maritime Museum!
  • Luke Jerram: Gaia. Tickets have flown out for this installation at Hull Minster, since they were released and in response we are adding new time-slots and capacity, so if you missed out on the date you wanted please check back.

 Our Stage@TheDock programme this year spans 3 weekends and includes:

  • Gandini Juggling: Smashed2. After their successful appearance at Freedom Festival in 2018 they return with 80 oranges, 7 watermelons and 9 performers!
  • Jon Hicks: The Visionary. Straddling the boundary between reality and performance, an, outsider, a street speaker sows confusion and uncertainty. Incorporating social satire, comedy, illusions and mayhem.
  • 2 Faced Dance: Power and Tribe; Still I Rise. 2 modern dance company’s with exhilarating pieces of work looking at authority, power and though we may fall, we rise again.
  • 15ft6: League & Legend. The multi-talented Belgian based circus collective taking it to the pitch. Armed with pole vault poles and tape, watch them beat every record on their way to the top of the league.

 As we navigate new ways experiencing culture alone or in social bubbles, we bring you a number of audio experiences for individuals and small groups:   

  • Duncan Speakman: Only Expansion. An award-winning audio tour that remixes the sound of the city around you to create and experience of how your own life might change in the future.
  • Blast Theory: Rider Spoke. You are invited to cycle alone, in the evening, on a ride in search of the perfect place to hide a secret.
  • 600 Highwaymen: A Thousand Ways Part One. Pick up the phone. Someone is on the line. You don’t know their name, and you still won’t when the hour is over, but through this exchange – as you follow a thread of automated prompts – a portrait of your partner will emerge through fleeting moments of exposure.
  • Aria Entertainment and WEF Productions: C-O-N-T-A-C-T.  Following sold out runs in London and Manchester meet a young woman sitting alone on a park bench, lost in her own thoughts. What is she thinking? Dive into her mind in this inspired sensory and immersive theatre experience.
  • The Herd: Hidden Winter. An exciting, story-walk adventure co-created with young sanctuary seekers in Bradford, made for children everywhere and their grownups. Pop on your headphones, and head off on a very special stroll around your local park rediscovering the magic of your surroundings.
  • Ithaca: 5000 Miles. An immersive 360-degree audio experience that transports you to another place through the evocative sounds of another country and culture.

 Installations, events and exhibitions include:

  • Marco Barotti: The Woodpeckers. In Trinity Square and the City Centre watch these mechanical marvels transform in real time the invisible radiations used for mobile communication and wireless technology into audible and visible drumming patterns creating a live soundscape which resonates as an invading drum ensemble into urban and natural environments.
  • Yara + Davina: Arrivals + Departures. A public artwork about birth, death and the journey in between at Beverley Gate. The public are invited to share the names of those who have arrived and departed, on live boards, as a way to acknowledge, celebrate and commemorate.
  • Friends on Every Street: Hull Daily Mates : here to celebrate everything about our City. This is more than an exhibition – this is Hull.
  • Strange Brew Collective: Bloom. Local artists Skeg, Mike Sprout and Mr Joe Johnson form work together in a way that doesn't need words, they are all dancing to the same rhythm and their work is very similar in style and energy.
  • Dean Wilson: A double dose of Dean. With the Dean Wilson Cinema Shack popping up at Trinity Market for the whole Festival and the Gala Premiere of Dean World on 27 and 28 August with 2 paid ticketed events at Wrecking Ball Music and Books.

 There are 6 paid ticketed events this year:

  • Daryl Beeton: A Square World. An honest, touching and quirky piece of theatre for young audiences at Hull Truck. A non verbal story, set to an original commissioned soundtrack creating an evolving and imaginative world where we discover anything can happen once we think differently and rip up the rule book. 
  • Sh!t Theatre: Drink Rum with Expats. Also at Hull Truck, join the multi-award winning company bring us their unique and hilarious take on European relations.
  • 3 special concerts held under Luke Jerram’s Gaia in Hull Minster. On consecutive Wednesday’s we’ll be presenting a series of classical concerts and on Friday 27 August, Broken Orchestra bring an evening of music and spoken word in a collaboration with poet Vicky Foster.
  • The 7 Fingers: Passagers. As a Festival encore, Freedom Festival are co-presenting the iconic-Canadian modern circus company at Hull New Theatre on Tuesday 28 September. If you have loved any of the past international modern circus companies that we have brought to Hull, you will not want to miss this one.

 We will also be presenting along-side the live programme, a series of on-line events for you to enjoy throughout the Festival wherever you are in the world including:

  • Freedom Talks: including Do I Look Like A Refugee looking at the (mis)representation of refugee women in media, humanitarian discourse and society.
  • Avant Garde Dance Company: Illegal Dance. A film combining dynamic contemporary choreography with innovative technical stagecraft to portray the tensions in a society that pits order against chaos, security against freedom, and individualism against collective will.
  • Mohammed Khaled: The Last Step Before Starting. A series of short films looking at the experience of migrants from different cultures/countries who have settled in Hull.
  • Freetown Media Centre: Film Labs Freedom Festival and KCOM partnered with Nova Studios, Freetown Media Centre and the British Council present a series of short exciting films from young film-makers in Hull’s partner city Freetown, Sierra Leone.

 Plus the final of the British Street Food Awards with further details of this event to be released over the coming weeks, it is a packed and exhilarating programme.