Blackpool Winter Gardens is to host a pioneering festival organised by young people completing their arts award with Blackpool Arts Service.
Complete with two stages, Under the Town takes place on Thursday, September 1, and will showcase a line-up of 13 local bands and singer/songwriters, including The Locals, Karima Francis, The Colours, Steph Fraser, former arts award winner Steph Ashcroft (pictured right) and Salford-based band The Cold One Hundred.
Fusing music, art and fashion, the all day festival will also feature DJ sets and short films plus fashion shows showcasing designer brand Me & Yu, a charity shop vintage challenge sponsored by Shelter with editorial backdrops produced by young people working with award-winning fashion photographer, Claire Pepper.
The youth-led event has been managed by Blackpool’s Blaze young producers supported by the Arts Service and forms part of a Lancashire wide youth-led culture and sport programme.
“It’s been so exciting to see Under The Town come together,” says Blackpool-born 16-year-old Alice Croft, one of the 33 young people organising the event. “We have been coming up with a lot of ideas for a long time but never imagined the event would grow to the size it is today.”
The organisers are all aiming to achieve bronze, silver or gold arts awards and Alice is going for gold, one of the highest accolades to recognise the abilities of a creative arts leader.
“It’s ace that because of our project we’ve got so many cool bands and artists coming to perform in Blackpool and we all can’t wait to see everything on the day,” said Alice.
Sara Domville, programme manager at Blaze, added: “The group working on Under The Town has done an amazing job.
“They came up with all the ideas and have made them all come to life. It’s setting up to be a great event and they should all be proud of the achievements. I wish them all good luck with their Arts Awards.”
Under The Town is part of the Blaze summer programme that started on July 17 and runs until September 4 with events created by young people from Blackpool, Nelson, Oswaldtwistle, Lancaster and Clayton-le-Moors.
It runs from 2 to 10pm on September 1 with Arena main-stage bands performing every hour and Arena 2 acoustic stage artists every half-hour. Tickets priced between £3 and £5 are available from reception at the Grundy Art Gallery, Queen Street or on (01253) 478170.
Pre-booking is advised, tickets will be on sale up until 5.30pm on the day of the event if places are still available.
To find out more visit www.blazeonline.org.uk/underthetown or www.facebook.com/underthetown.