The Bath Festival is excited to return with its 2021 programme offering both live events from Monday 17 May to Monday 24 May and The Bath Festival At Home, a digital broadcast for audiences to experience at home.

The Bath Festival 2021 celebrates the best in music and books in a beautiful city, as it has done for more than 70 years. A diverse programme ranges from talks and discussions to poetry, concerts and theatre.

The live events will see some of the brightest talent from the worlds of music and books, along with discussions about the big issues of our time. Listen to best-selling authors and experts in their field sharing their experiences. Highlights include:

  • Dr Rachel Clarke, author of Breathtaking, an unflinching insider’s account of medicine in the time of coronavirus.
Dr Rachel Clarke
  • Ted Hughes Award winner poet Hollie McNish, whose live readings are mesmerising. Hollie will be reading from her much-anticipated new collection: Slug… and other things I’ve been told to hate.
  • Working from Home: How to Survive and Thrive. 2020 saw huge numbers of us suddenly adapt to entirely new ways of working. Speaker, career coach and journalist Harriet Minter shares funny, practical advice, hard-won tricks, tips and tools.
  • Comedian Tez Ilyas talks about his life as a young British Muslim growing up in a time of race riots, fear and prejudice.
  • The unique setting of the Roman Baths will provide the atmospheric backdrop for a concert from the internationally acclaimed vocal group The Gesualdo Six.
The Gesualdo Six
  • Two series of guided walks, one to explore the influences on Mary Shelley that inspired her to start writing Frankenstein during her time in Bath, the other, commissioned by The Bath Festival, is a delicious Regency romp through the streets in the footsteps of the Netflix sensation Bridgerton.
  • Kadiatu Kanneh-Mason, mother of seven young classical musicians, the Kanneh-Masons (pictured above), brings two of her celebrated offspring to perform as she talks about what it is like to raise such a remarkable family, following the release of her memoir The House of Music.
  • Much-loved entertainer Mel Giedroyc talks to Fran Beauman about her debut novel The Best Things, a big-hearted story of a family on the brink, that’s as warm and witty as Mel herself.
Mel Giedroyc
  • The Bath Festival Orchestra, created to foster emerging talent in classical music, will play in Bath Abbey and at Green Park Station. The orchestra’s concert will be the first live performance in the abbey, which has been closed for major refurbishment for two years. This performance will be recorded by BBC Radio3.
  • The Sunday Times No1 bestseller Caroline Hirons, Skincare Queen and beauty blogger with over one million social media followers, will be sharing some of the billion-pound beauty industry’s secrets as she explores the facts, the myths and the best way to get good skin on any budget.
  • The Bath Festival Finale Weekend, an open-air festival in the heart of beautiful Bath has been re-scheduled from 2020 and will now take place over the weekend of 7 and 8 August. This family-friendly music festival will see McFly, supported by Scouting for Girls, topping the bill on the Saturday, while on the Sunday UB40 (featuring Ali Campbell and Astro) will be supported by Billy Ocean. There will be a host of other stars as well. Tickets are available NOW.

Live events will be filmed and will be available digitally post festival as The Bath Festival At Home which will include a visual celebration of the historic city of Bath. Audiences at home will be able to dip into the programme at their leisure and enjoy The Bath Festival experience in the comfort of their own homes. The digital festival will also showcase Bath’s architecture and history to the watching world. Look out too for Bath Reads, an innovative Bath Festivals project supported by the Mayor of Bath Cllr Manda Rigby and the Charter Trustees of the City of Bath, which involves the work of local authors and reaches out to involve book groups and individuals who love to read.

Tickets go on general release from Tuesday 13 April,
from www.thebathfestival.org.uk and 01225 463362.