Thomas Brooman  My Festival Romance: The Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing But Some of the Truth.
1:30 pm13:30

Thomas Brooman My Festival Romance: The Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing But Some of the Truth.

  • Carinas

Thomas was one of the organisers of the first Womad Festival, held in 1982.  That first event was an artistic triumph but a financial disaster. Womad survived, just, and Brooman went on to help organise more than one hundred and fifty Womad Festivals all over the world.

Now he has written a book, My Festival Romance, about his lifelong passion for festivals and for music.

At this session Thomas will tell some of the truth about his adventures and speak about the enduring importance that festivals hold for many of us.

The session will be moderated by fRoots editor Ian Anderson.

Steve Roud - Folk Song in England
Aug 9

Steve Roud - Folk Song in England

  • Festival Art Centre

Steve Roude - Folk Song in England

5:30-7:00 pm Arts Centre Talk: History of Folk Song In England. To celebrate the publication of his book, Folk Song In England, by Faber, in August 2017, Steve Roud will talk about how traditional song developed in the period before 1950. Lecture and Q & A. Introduced by Derek Schofield. W £10

9:30-11:00 am Arts Centre Talk: Broadsides and the Folk: Street Literature meets the Oral Tradition presented by Steve Roud. We will investigate the history and development of street literature, and assess its effect on the folk tradition. Lecture. Q & A. W £10

12:00-1:30 pm Kingswood & Talk: The Carpenter Collection Goes Live by Julia Bishop and Steve Roud. The great Devoran Hotel, folk song and drama collection made by J.M. Carpenter in 1930s Britain has lain inaccesKingswood Room sible for decades. Now it’s available on the updated Vaughan Williams Library digital archive. Discover more about these exciting developments and the collection’s riches. W £10

In Victorian times, England was famously dubbed the land without music  - but one of the great musical discoveries of the early twentieth  century was that England had a vital heritage of folk song and music  which was easily good enough to stand comparison with those of other  parts of Britain and overseas. Cecil Sharp, Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Percy Grainger, and a number of other enthusiasts gathered a huge  harvest of songs and tunes which we can study and enjoy at our leisure.But  after over a century of collection and discussion, publication and  performance, there are still many things we don't know about traditional  song - Where did the songs come from? Who sang them, where, when and  why? What part did singing play in the lives of the communities in which  the songs thrived? More importantly, have the pioneer collectors'  restricted definitions and narrow focus hindered or helped our  understanding?This is the first book for many years to  investigate the wider social history of traditional song in England, and  draws on a wide range of sources to answer these questions and many  more.

Sound System: The Political Power of Music - Dave Randall
11:00 am11:00

Sound System: The Political Power of Music - Dave Randall

  • Winstone's

Musicians have often wanted to change the world. From underground innovators to pop icons many have believed in the political power of music. Rulers recognise it too. Music has been used to challenge the political and social order – and to prop up the status quo.

Sound System is the story of one musician’s journey to discover what makes music so powerful. Dave Randall uses his insider’s knowledge of the industry to shed light on the secrets of celebrity, commodification and culture. It is a book of raves, riots and revolution and poses the question: how can we make music serve the interests of the many, rather than the few.

Dave Randall is a musician and activist. He has toured the world playing guitar with Faithless, Sinead O’Connor, Emiliana Torrini and many others.

"A deeply intelligent look at music and society. Thought provoking, readable and clever" Mark Radcliffe (BBC 2 / 6Music)

"A terrific, exciting book, weaving together music, politics and worldwide struggles". Yasmin Alibhai-Brown (writer and journalist)

"A thrilling trip through the dark corners and secret gardens of the music world" Maxi Jazz (Faithless)

Victoria Hislop
7:00 pm19:00

Victoria Hislop

  • Kennaway House

Venue: Kennaway House

Tickets: £12.50

We're delighted to be welcoming bestselling author Victoria Hislop to Sidmouth for a special Autumn Sun, Sea and Books Sidmouth Literary Festival Event.

VICTORIA HISLOP wrote The Island in 2005, after being inspired by a visit to Spinalonga, the abandoned Greek leprosy colony. It became an international bestseller and a 26-part Greek TV series. She was named Newcomer of the Year at the British Book Awards and is now an ambassador for Lepra. Her affection for the Mediterranean took her to Spain, which inspired her second bestseller, The Return, and she returned to Greece to tell the turbulent tale of Thessaloniki in The Thread, which was then shortlisted for a British Book Award. This confirmed her reputation as an inspirational storyteller. The Sunrise, published in 2014 and Cartes Postales from Greece, published in 2016, were both Sunday Times Top Ten Bestsellers. The paperback of Cartes Postales from Greece is published on August 10 this year.

Hunting Raven- Debby Holt author signing and talk
7:00 pm19:00

Hunting Raven- Debby Holt author signing and talk

  • Hunting Raven Books

Join us for a talk and book signing with Debbie Holt and her new book 'The Dangers of Family Secrets'

Doors 6:30pm 7:00pm start

`I look back at our married life and I wonder if there was anything real about it at all...'Genealogist Freya Cameron has the perfect life. A devoted husband of nearly thirty years and career driven, successful twin daughters. But what if it's all a lie?So skilled at excavating her clients' family histories, Freya has no idea why her family are so cold towards her.

They know something she doesn't and are determined to make her pay for it. But sometimes secrets are better not left untold. The Dangers of Family Secrets is a gripping story about trust, love and the destructive effects secrets have on a family.


This is a free event but please book your place in the shop or call us on 01373 473111
There will be refreshments