Hopes outdoor music gig can kickstart the arts after lockdown
- Credit: NEIL DIDSBURY
The duo behind a live outdoor gig hope it will help kickstart the creative scene across the country as lockdown eases.
Garden Sessions, which took place at Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich, on Saturday, May 29, and continues on Sunday, May 30, rounds off this year's amended Norfolk and Norwich Festival.
And organisers James Hardie, music programmer for the festival, who joined forces with Wild Paths festival founder, Ben Street, said it was nice to see the "sheer delight" on people's faces in the audience.
Mr Hardie said: "You sense a renewed energy for people to see acts they have not seen before. It has been very moving see the interaction between artists and the audience. People have realised how much they have missed live music."
The gig on Saturday saw performances from four artists, including Norwich singer-songwriter Maya Law and critically acclaimed jazz drummer and producer Moses Boyd.
Sunday's socially distant event, taking place from 1pm to 5pm, will also star four acts and the maximum audience capacity each day is 500.
Mr Hardie added: "The Norfolk and Norwich Festival was one of the first live arts events out of the tracks. We are kickstarting the scene."
Mr Street, who started Wild Paths Festival two years ago, said the main Norfolk and Norwich Festival and Garden Sessions were setting a precedent and could have ripple effects on the music scene across the country.
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"It is so important to create a strong creative community in Norwich," he added.
The Garden Sessions were the first time the pair had collaborated for the festival but they hoped to again.
They added the pandemic had also forced people to change the way creative events are run in the future with a focus on flexibility.
Katie Colley, 33, from Norwich, who works for mental health charity Mind, was enjoying Saturday's gig with her friends from Norfolk and London after months of not being able to see each other.
She said: "It is great to be out again. I don't see the harm in doing things like this."
Karishma Sangtani, 22, who was with her university friends from the Durham area, said: "It feels surreal to be watching live music."
Her friend Evie Hill, 22, said: "It is a really nice atmosphere."