Town set to welcome global musical talent

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Harrogate is getting in tune to host its 44th International Youth Festival over the Easter Weekend.

The Easter Parade on Saturday April 15 at 11am will march into the festival programme which starts with a Grand Opening Concert in the evening at the Royal Hall.

Easter Sunday sees the popular Jazz and Big band evening at The Old Swan, and on Easter Monday there will be an early evening concert at The Royal Hall and the spectacular closing event on Tuesday April 18 at Ripon Cathedral.

Craig Ratcliffe, Head of music at St John Fishers and one of the festival organisers, said: “Our local bands and choral groups are lucky enough to perform throughout the year at festivals, concerts and community events.

“But to engage with other children from other cultures with likeminded interests is a unique experience for them and for the many children and young people we welcome to Harrogate each year.

Musical groups and schools from the UK and all over the world are invited to entertain Harrogate audiences.

Harrogate is represented by St John Fisher Catholic High School, Harrogate High School, St Aidans, Katrina Hughes Dance School, St Aelred’s Irish Dance Group, Harrogate Sea Cadets, and Tewit Youth Band.

Festival organisers are delighted to welcome musical groups from countries such as: Finland, Russia, Thailand and USA. Groups from other areas of the UK such as Dragon School Jazz Band from Oxford and Blackburn Jazz Band.

Craig added: “We have to thank our faithful Harrogate audiences for supporting us whole heartedly with everything we do. The opportunities that these young people gain from festivals like the HIYF are priceless.

“Tickets prices have been kept low to be inclusive and to offer these musical opportunities to everyone.“

“We want to welcome our International visitors to Harrogate and show our support by offering full houses in the Royal Hall, The Old Swan and the Ripon Cathedral. At only £7 a ticket for adults and £5 for all concessions – it really is a musical weekend not to be missed.”

All information for this year’s festival and how to book tickets can be found on the HIYF website: or you can call the Harrogate Theatre box office on Tel: 01423 502 116.