A summer festival which brings the streets of County Durham alive with the sound of brass music is set to return this year, with the first act now announced.
Durham Brass Festival promises a week of spectacular performances, new commissions, free concerts, community activities, and a full programme of lively street bands when it returns from Sunday 9 to Sunday 16 July.
Opening the Durham County Council-run festivities is Fat Freddy’s Drop, a New Zealand-based band who will be playing at Gala Durham on Monday 10 July.
Internationally regarded for their live music performances, the seven-piece band is inspired by each member’s individual musical influences from reggae and soul, disco and house, to rock and rhythm and blues.
Fat Freddy’s Drop have delivered over 1,000 shows in their career, clocking more than 500 appearances in Europe, 34 Australian tours and over 325 shows in their New Zealand homeland, building a loyal audience of fans – the Fred Heads.
Last year, the band performed headline festival shows all over Europe, including a sold- out performance at Alexandra Palace in London and a headliner appearance at Sidney Myer Music Bowl for the Melbourne International Jazz Festival.
Cllr Elizabeth Scott, Durham County Council’s Cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: “We are delighted to be announcing the first act for Durham Brass Festival in what will be a week packed full of musicians and performers bringing County Durham to life with their talents. Bringing Fat Freddy’s drop to Durham BRASS has been a huge ambition for the festival and one we are delighted to see come to life in 2023.
“Durham Brass is one of the highlights of our annual cultural events programme, bringing together music and community. We are committed to delivering exciting events and cultural opportunities for residents and visitors year-round, raising our profile internationally and demonstrating our ambition to make County Durham the culture county.”
Tickets to see Fat Freddy’s Drop will be on sale from Friday 17 March, and can be purchased at www.brassfestival.co.uk
For more information about the band, visit www.fatfreddysdrop.com