What Is Abbeyfest? Director's Notes
WHAT IS ABBEYFEST?
Abbeyfest the summer festival of Music, Comedy and Theatre in South London is now in its 15th year and as always its theme of "keep it live" is once again very much alive this year!
The festival has gone all out to put on a great line up of FREE Jazz concerts, top drawer late night comedy, Slaughterville at the Watermill, A delicious season of Theatre, Chamber Concerts, South London’s only Blues Festival “Blues at the Mills” and a fantastic Children’s festival, Kidsfest on the 27th August. As always we are encouraging more and more families to attend, there will be children’s activities late night shopping and of course the 2 hours of exciting and vibrant live concerts every Friday night throughout opening on the 8th of July.
Abbeyfest was launched in the summer of 1998 and has fast become one of South West London’s premier Arts festivals. Abbeyfest runs for 2 months during July and August and showcases performances in Music, Theatre and Comedy.
The philosophy of Abbeyfest is about being entertained, having fun and being accessible to all the family. The festival is a very popular community event which is also attended by people from all over south West London attracting in excess of 20,000 visitors every year. One of the many festival highlights is the free Friday night jazz and blues concerts that run throughout. These evenings encapsulate the festival in all its glory where up to 2,500 people per night have a wonderful experience. The Historic riverside setting of Merton Abbey Mills plays host to the festival making it the perfect partner for such a unique and entertaining event. From open air on the bandstand to performances in the more intimate Graded II listed Colour House Theatre, the Mills has it all in one location!
Abbeyfest boasts to be the longest event of its type with over 50 days of performance every year. The festival creates the opportunity for many new, aspiring and established actors, performers, musicians, writers and directors to have a platform to showcase their work. Every year Abbeyfest creates many valuable work experience placements for students in surrounding schools and colleges to gain a real hands on insight to the entertainment industry.
........ Peter Wallder Festival Director