International dance festival returns

Chinese dancers who are set to perform at the festival
Chinese dancers who are set to perform at the festival
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Hundreds of dancers and thousands of visitors are expected to descend on an international dance festival.

The Billingham International Folklore Festival of World Dance takes place next month and will see talented performers from across the world entertain audiences for a week-long programme of events.

Troupes from Brazil, Chile, China, Mexico, the Philippines, Serbia, USA and Sicily are set to arrive in the coming weeks ahead of the festival, which has become a highlight of the region’s arts and culture calendar.

Around 10,000 people attended last year’s festival and organisers are confident this year’s packed programme will attract even more.

Artistic director Olga Maloney said: “The festival is a spectacular display and celebration of dance from performers around the world and we hope this year will be our most successful yet.

“Over 200 dancers from all corners of the globe will arrive in the coming weeks and we’re already seeing tickets for the various shows selling well.”

Stockton Borough Council has provided the core funding, while Arts Council England have funded the contemporary elements of the festival programme while Awards for All are supporting an initiative which will see dancers visit care homes in the area.

Most of the concerts and events will be held at the Festival Arena, which this year will be right in the middle of Billingham town centre, with other events being held in Middlesbrough Town Hall Crypt, Middlesbrough Theatre and Billingham Forum.

To find out more about the event visit www.billinghamfestival.co.uk or call (01642) 553220.