Didsbury Arts Festival

Didsbury Arts festival is a volunteer led multi arts festival celebrating creative culture in Didsbury, through working with local, national and international artists. 

We are a biennial festival. The next edition will take place from 22 June - 30 June 2019. The festival theme will be Roots. If you would like to join the 2019 team, please get in touch.

DAF 2019: A Curious Festival

Didsbury Arts Festival returns in 2019 (22-30 June) to take over the Manchester suburb with a range of special events and experiences, all responding to the festival theme of Curiosity.
DAF 2019: A Curious Festival will encourage audiences to try something new, to immerse themselves in one-off experiences, be part of unique events, learn about cultures, traditions and religions, and about the people in their community.
We are looking for new work that can be installed (or performed) for the duration of the festival or for a day/number of days as part of the festival programme, with the opportunity to develop the work in the future if appropriate.
A Curious Festival: Commission Brief
DAF will be commissioning up to 3 new pieces of work (funding dependent) which respond to the theme of Curiosity and will premiere at the 2019 festival.
Although the theme of Curiosity is open for interpretation, some of the suggested outcomes below may act as starting points when thinking about the commission proposal:
- A piece of work/s which encourages participation from as many members of the local and wider community as possible
- Content which sparks the imagination, is bold, a one-off
- The work could be presented in a unique location: site specific, somewhere out of the ordinary, a promenade performance
- Push boundaries, challenge perceptions, appeal to people’s curiosity
We welcome applications from artists, creative thinkers and artist groups from all backgrounds, working in all genres and disciplines.
We are particularly interested in socially engaged work that in some way connects the artist and art work to the local community in Didsbury.

What we provide

Comprising a mix of grant funding and sponsorship, we aim to offer each selected artist or group a budget of up to £3,000 - to cover all fees and materials and inclusive of any VAT. We will work closely with each artist to ensure we can provide the necessary technical support and venue/location for the work. We will promote each of the commissioned works as highlights within our PR and marketing.

Application process

Please submit the following information in one PDF document:
1: A CV with contact details
2: A covering letter which includes:
- Outline of your idea
- How the work responds to the theme of Curiosity
- Your approach to making the work, including key milestones
- An outline budget
3: A link to your website or other online presence with more details about your practice

Please email your application to: info@didsburyartsfestival.org - for the attention of Ella Wild, Festival Director
Application deadline: 5pm, Monday 9th July, 2018


Deadline for applications: 5pm, Monday 9th July 2018
Shortlisted applicants will be contacted no later than Monday 23rd July 2018
Interviews if relevant will take place w/c 30th July 2018
Outcome of funding applications anticipated w/c 3rd September 2018
Installed works should be in place w/c 17th June 2019
Performance works should take place during the festival, from 22 – 30 June 2019

Didsbury Arts Festival Background

Didsbury Arts festival is a volunteer led multi arts festival celebrating creative culture in Didsbury, through working with the local community and local, national and international artists. Since 2009 this community led festival has been bringing the village to life with a rich programme spanning 10 days of visual art, music, theatre, performance and family friendly fun.
The festival works with the local community, artists and businesses to promote increased arts activity in Didsbury. In addition to the commissioning strand, artists from all backgrounds and disciplines are invited to submit proposals via the open submissions application programme, launching in the autumn, with a particular focus on inspiring and promoting the work of local artists.
The wide ranging programme aims to provide a rich eclectic mix of quality work that will appeal to both a highly engaged arts audience and attract new audiences of all ages and backgrounds.