6 things to do in Sussex this spring bank holiday weekend
- Credit: Ralf Schuett
Make the most of the spring bank holiday weekend in Sussex by discovering these brilliant arts and culture events on the doorstep
May 20 to August 29
A highlight in the county's arts and culture calendar, the much-loved opera festival sings throughout the summer. New productions of Janáček’s Kát’a Kabanová, Rossini’s Il turco in Italia and Verdi’s Luisa Miller will take place, alongside a revival of Mozart’s Così fan tutte. Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde will be presented as a semi-staged concert with a full orchestra, to do justice to the opera’s epic score. The Orchestra of the Age of the Enlightenment and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, will also take centre stage in a series of specially-curated concerts.
De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill
This jazz, arts and mob festival is sure to excite and delight you on the bank holiday weekend. Thursday's Resonate will see a free flow of collaboration from spoken word artists and musicians. Friday will see sets from Spielzeug, Ill Considered and Hexagonal for a night of wide jazz varieties. Sunday evening will be filled with hip-hop and rap.
Tickets: £15 per event (apart from Resonate, which is £5). A festival pass is £40
May 28 to June 27
Brighton Fringe, which is back with a mixture of digital productions and in-person shows, welcomes international performers and audiences as it showcases the creative heart and soul of the city. This vast celebration of the 'weird, wild and wonderful' has grown out of, and is inspired by, home-grown talent. It embraces every art form and every form of artistic expression, and supports both new and established performers in trying out new work. There are hundreds of events on the programme, from comedy to circus to cabaret, theatre, dance and more - it's enough to keep even the most dedicated arts and culture fans busy for the entire month.
Tickets: This is an open-access arts festival. Ticket prices vary, and there are a number of free-to-attend events.
Artists Open Houses Festival
Get a glimpse of new work from artists and makers emerging from lockdown, including Faye Bridgwater [pictured] whose joyful contemporary landscapes are influenced by the Sussex coastline, at Brighton’s Artists Open Houses Festival. Kickstarting on the bank holiday and coinciding with Brighton Fringe, it marks a key moment in the city’s creative and cultural recovery with over 1,000 creatives throwing open the doors to their homes and studios, offering a coveted chance to browse and buy. There’s also a fabulous line-up of artists exhibiting online.
Taking place at weekends from May 29-31 (the bank holiday) and every weekend in June. aoh.org.uk
Experience a glimpse of medieval life at this exciting event. Hear the clash of steel and cries of victory from fearsome sword-fighting displays as live music plays. There will be traditional crafts on display, from blacksmiths to leatherworkers and the young (and young at heart) can test their skills at archery. It's a wonderful day out - all set against the magnificent backdrop of the castle.
Included in entry price for the castle and gardens: £20, adults. £10, children. Entry to the gardens: £12, adults. £6, children.
Historic Life Weekend: Wood Craft & Trades
Weald and Downland Living Museum, Chichester
What better place than the home of The Repair Shop to learn about the mastery of woodworking? Wood is an essential building material, for homes, furniture and much more. During this weekend you can find out about the way it is worked into the different forms, with demonstrations from a range of craftspeople and displays. For example, discover which trees are used for which purposes, how people learn the skills to handle it and more.
Tickets: Adult £14, senior £12, child £6.50