The 'Out There' Festival draws a crowd of positivity
The weather was kind, and the mood was buoyant as visitors, artists, crew, volunteers, vendors and the seaside town were more than ready for the Out There Festival 2021 which was missed last year due to lockdown.
Record numbers were reached with over 65,000 visitors who enjoyed the free entertainment over the sunny weekend (17-19 September).
Joe Mackintosh, Chief Executive for Out There Arts said: "We have been overwhelmed by the success of this year's festival. We have had over 65,000 people attend. That is even greater than the record breaking 2019 edition of the festival and our audiences have been so happy to be back and so warm and positive about the festival, many of them quite emotional about it."
He said: "The festival is also made by a team of over 400 artists, crew, volunteers, caterers, workshop leaders, professional delegates etc, and it was so joyous for all to be reconnected with each other after such a long time. Many artists told us they had been on the brink of quitting the industry and that this had energised and inspired them to continue and rise again."
He added: "We spread the Out There Festival all over town, including the whole seafront, St George's park, all of Trafalgar Road, the Drill House, the Market Place and even a special Friday night Cobholm Island Beach Party. The numbers of people engaging were just incredible. And all this was achieved in such a short time frame against incredible odds. Next year will build on this and should be truly massive."
The mood of the crowd was said to be special, reconnecting everyone with a sense of collective positivity.
Many of the locals said that they appreciated the free entertainment and were grateful for doing something for their town. There were also comments that there were lots of first timers from Norwich and further afield.
Highlights that made it unique for this year included a beach performance of Gorilla Circus with show Unity and a fun Friday night beach party in Cobholm.
Next year is said to be bigger and better. Joe Mackintosh revealed: "Expect an increase of international work and participatory shows, a large-scale show and exploring more spaces around town and get audience moving around on the Saturday Night. Next year we plan to build a greater 'Friday Night Fire up' with another Party in the Park and the Festival Lounge."