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A Summer Of Festival Fun


The snow has finally thawed, and Christmas already feels like a distant memory – what could be better to lift the spirits than a sneak-peak at the Summer of festivals ahead in 2011?

2011 offers a feast of cultural treats throughout the Summer months as the Jazz, Science and Music festivals look set to offer some truly memorable events. The extra bank holiday for the Royal Wedding will add even more swing to Jazz on the Square at the end of April; June promises celebrations of another kind as the Science Festival marks its tenth anniversary; and July welcomes another breath-taking programme of concerts in the Music Festival. Here we look at a few of the highlights to whet your appetite for the year ahead...

The Jazz Festival swings into town from 27 April – 2 May. Following sell-out performances in 2010, jazz superstar Jamie Cullum returns to the festival helm to Guest Direct in 2011. Jamie will be choosing some of his favourite musicians from around the globe to join him in Cheltenham. With an eye for outstanding new talent and a love of unique collaborations – Mr Cullum is sure to sprinkle some stardust on the Cheltenham line-up (and may even take to the stage himself...).

Cheltenham Town Hall will be transformed into the unrivalled festival hub, as the music spills out into Imperial Gardens with Jazz on the Square - featuring outdoor music, al fresco food and family fun throughout the festival. Look out for the best new talent from the UK jazz scene, Norway’s premier musicians, legendary divas and the world’s finest performers in this not to be missed musical adventure for all ages. The full programme will be available in February, with tickets available to Cheltenham Festivals Members from 21 February.

The Times Cheltenham Science Festival returns from 7-12 June for six days of explosive debate, mind-expanding adventures, inspiring talks and hands-on fun. Robert Winston famously claimed Cheltenham to be ‘Unquestionably the leading science festival in the country’ - and in 2011 it looks set to prove him right! The full, inspiring programme of speakers is taking shape right now, but given the host of superstar scientists who took part in 2010 – Heston Blumenthal, Brian Cox, Alice Roberts and Ben Miller to name just a few – you can expect great things this June!

To mark its momentous tenth anniversary the festival gets the X-factor with the eXtra special festival theme of X! It will be asking ‘What does the letter ‘X’ conjure up for you?’ - X-rays, X-men, algebra, Roman numerals, X-rated eXploits? Join some of the world’s greatest thinkers, comedians and superstar scientists to celebrate in style and eXplore all things X-related! The full line-up and tickets will be available to members from 28 March.

From 30 June – 10 July, Cheltenham Music Festival offers a host of outstanding, uplifting and inspiring musical experiences. Established in 1945, the Music Festival is the national institution which has ensured Cheltenham’s position on the cultural map for more than 65 years. Set in beautiful venues throughout the Cotswolds – the 2011 programme brings together some of the world’s leading performers, composers and classical repertoires in a stunning regency backdrop.

Just a few of the musical delights in the 2011 line-up include Evelyn Glennie in the world première of a new percussion concerto by Joseph Phibbs that celebrates cocktails from around the world; performances by exciting young artists including pianist James Rhodes in his concerto debut, a Dvorák chamber music double-bill featuring cellist Natalie Clein, and a performance from one of classical music’s hottest new properties, guitarist Milos Karadaglic; and, following the huge success of the Sound Mind series in 2010, a journey of discovery into the connections between music and maths. The full programme of over 80 unique experiences will be available to Members from 4 April.

With such exciting programmes across all of Cheltenham’s 2011 festivals – tickets are sure to sell-out fast. The way to ensure the best seats in the house is to become a Cheltenham Festivals Member. Members enjoy priority booking, discounted tickets, exclusive programme previews and many more benefits throughout the year. To discover more about all these amazing benefits and join today visit

For the latest programme updates on all the festivals please visit