HISF March Newsletter

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We had set ourselves a target of responding to all Artists applications by the end of February as we do understand how disappointing and frustrating it is to be waiting a long time for confirmation or otherwise. As far as we know all artists have now received a reply and bookings are almost complete. If you find you are still waiting to hear from us or you have not yet applied, but are still hoping to perform in 2023, please do email us as soon as possible at info@harwichshantyfestival.co.uk . We are unable as yet to publish details of all confirmed artists whilst we continue to work on programming and preparations for another superb Harwich International Shanty Festival, but we hope to do this next month.


58 Ships

On Saturday 25th February we held another meeting about our 58 Ships Project, investigating the histories of all ships built at Harwich Navyard. The meeting was well attended with very encouraging interest and progress. Ten of the 58 Ships have already been “adopted” meaning that research into their histories has already commenced. There is also now a Graveyard Page on the  website, illustrating where some of these ships ended their life and more information about all aspects of the project will be uploaded as it is received. There is still plenty of scope for anyone interested to take part in the project and the timescale is open ended so that there is no limit as to when fresh information can be added. In addition to the historical research we very much welcome any artistic endeavours which could possibly be showcased at our Shanty Festivals. A poem and song have already been written and a Musical show centred around HMS Conqueror will be presented at the Festival this October. To find out more visit: https://58ships.org.uk/ 


Shanty Marathon

It is now nearly 12 years since we held the first Shantython and it remains a fond memory for many – in a masochistic sort of way! So we decided the time is ripe for a second record breaking attempt.

There will be 26 hours of continuous shanties and sea songs in the Alma Inn Harwich starting 12.00 on Friday 28th April and ending 14.00 Saturday 29th April. Songs will be sung in shifts on a rota basis and no-one is expected to stay up for the entire 26 hours, unless of course they want to. Insomniacs are of course particularly welcome! This will be a fundraising venture for the Shanty Festival, but the emphasis is on FUNdraising! So there will be raffles, forfeits, spot prizes, shanty bingo and more to pass the time when not singing.

Everyone is welcome, from large shanty crews to solo singers, with or without any previous shanty, or indeed singing experience. The idea is to keep the singing going and last time brought in some interesting gems from folks who had never heard of shanties before. We will have words available if required. You do not have to register in advance to attend, although an indication of likely interest would be helpful and does not commit you in any way.

There are still rooms available in the Alma if required:  https://www.almaharwich.co.uk/  and the bar will remain open for the entire duration.

Plus there is a Real Ale Festival taking place throughout Harwich that weekend. 


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