BBC’s The Worst Witch Bella Ramsey, Michelin starred chef Alex Bond, band of the moment Do Nothing and the Kanneh-Mason sisters make up just some of the exciting line up of talent announced for Nottstoppping Festival (23-24 May).
The line up for one of the most innovative and ambitious digital festivals to be staged during lockdown reads like a who who’s of talent for the whole of Nottinghamshire. TV and film actor Esther Coles is joined by friend and fellow actor Jane Horrocks for a new comedy piece devised for the festival.
They join Line of Duty star Vicky McClure, This is England director Shane Meadows, award-winning artist Wolfgang Buttress, BBC’s The Big Painting Challenge Diana Ali and acclaimed documentary filmmaker Jeanie Finlay for the mammoth 150 hours of streaming and eight community connect projects to get the whole of Nottinghamshire involved.
Some highlights to look out for include a Worst Witch Q&A with actor Bella Ramsey – who played Mildred Hubble in several series of the hit CBBC show – with current Worst Witch actor Lydia Page. TV Workshop director Nic Harvey will chair the Q&A where fans can tune in and put a question to the pair.
Alex Bond is blazing a trail at Alchemilla in Nottingham, where his innovative dishes have made him one of the most exciting chefs in the country. Awarded a Michelin Star just two years after opening the Derby Road restaurant, Alex will be doing a cookalong for the festival.
Over on the BBC Introducing stream, Dean Jackson will be sharing specially recorded songs from band of the moment Do Nothing. The punk quartet from Nottingham has caught the attention of music industry tastemakers and fans alike rapidly building a reputation as one of the most formidable live acts in the country. Dean has a few more surprise guests up his sleeve too.
Nottingham born MC and a pivotal figure in the UK underground dance scene Bru-C will be appearing on Light Hustle – the collaboration between Circle of Light and Hockley Hustle showcasing new and emerging artists – with more than 20 hours of the music livestream hosted once again by Mrs Green.
An all-female line up of Kanneh-Masons will see the sisters from the talented musical family playing together on the Royal Concert Hall stage filmed especially for the festival. Pianist Isata – who is taking the classical world by storm – will be joined by younger sisters Konya, Jeneba, Aminata and Mariatu. Singer songwriter Rob Green – who has just released his new single Life Goes On with a video featuring 100s of people living life in lockdown – will be performing a set on the stage too.
Poetry buffs are in for a treat with appearances from Lemn Sissay MBE – the official poet of the 2012 London Olympics and chancellor of the University of Manchester and Roger McGough CBE – one of Britain’s best-loved poets and presenter of BBC Radio 4’s Poetry Please. Writer, poet, TV and film producer Henry Normal – BAFTA winner and founder of Nottingham Poetry Festival – will be taking part too.
More than 20 care homes have signed up so far to have a good old singalong to some old favourite songs with rehearsals underway already! Everyone is invited to join in with the Pack Up Your Troublessingalong to share a special moment with everyone living and working in the county’s care homes. Tune in to BBC Radio Nottingham at 2pm on both days of the festival to join in.
The Community Connect projects are all available on https://nottstoppingfestival.com/projects/ with the chance to write a street story, make a kite, take part in cookalongs, learn how to sign to ‘It Must Be Love’ and learn the dance moves for a Doorstep Disco for everyone to join in at 7pm on both days.
Nottstopping is also asking people to nominate a frontline worker close to their heart for the chance for them to receive a special gift, treat or experience being pledged by generous businesses across Nottinghamshire. To submit a nomination, post a short video on Nottstopping Festival social media saying why they are your frontline hero and hashtag #nottstoppingheroes
The festival will be streamed in full at www.nottstoppingfestival.com. Local broadcaster Notts TV will also be presenting a special programme of Nottstopping activities over the course of the weekend at www.nottstv.com and BBC Nottingham are broadcasting a singalong at 2pm and dancelong at 7pm both days.
The full programme will be announced on www.nottstoppingfestival.com from Thursday 14 May. Keep an eye out for stories in the media, and follow the Nottstopping social media to stay in touch.
Join in the conversation #nottstopping