The stage is set for SO Festival 2017

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Published 22nd March 2017. SO Festival is BACK! Returning 27 June - 2 July 2017 for six days of free outdoor and explosive entertainment. SO Festival will be touring through Spilsby, Horncastle, Alford and Mablethorpe before arriving in Skegness for the finalé weekend on 1 - 2 July.

This will be the 9th year running for SO Festival and we are all set to deliver yet another fantastic display of outdoor art. From a giant edible map of East Lindsey; Cake Fest, to a spectacular finalé performance, this summer at SO Festival is one not to be missed! From 27 June, get ready to immerse yourself in the world of arts and culture and enjoy six days of breath taking entertainment across East Lindsey.

"SO Festival is a brilliant event for the whole family; it's free, accessible and all the acts are innovative, interesting and entertaining - there really is something for everyone. There's a fantastic family feel about the festival and lots of opportunities for local people to get involved." Lorna Fulton, Festival Director.

The theme for SO Festival this year is play. Together with increased opportunities for groups and schools to participate in the development of the programme and a series of new digital & gaming commissions, communities will be using their free time to play with the Festival, and even bake!

Cake Fest is asking budding bakers to claim and recreate their favourite building or place. The aim is simple; to create a 100 square metre fully-edible map of East Lincolnshire. The cake sculptures will be produced all over the region and will be placed together to create a true visual feast.

Sheesham & Lotus & 'Son is an act that will have audiences captivated from the start. Fiddle, Banjo and Sousaphone make up the core of this outfit, complimented by Contrabass-Harmoniphonium, Harmonicas and Jaw Harps, with great harmonies.

Lighting up the town! Sparks will fly when Les Commandos Percu & Deabru Beltzak visit Skegness on for an explosive evening performance on Saturday 1 July. Les Commandos will present the spectacular show Danbor Talka (Clash of Drums), signifying a clash of cultures through movement, rhythm, pyrotechnics and fire.

Garsington Opera for All in partnership with SO Festival have revealed their touring opera for 2017 which is a presentation of Semele; a love story with a twist. Composed in 1744, Semele features some of Handel's most exquisitely beautiful music, with soaring choruses and splendid orchestral writing enhancing this most touching and humorous opera.

Paul Grist, from Garsington Opera for All said "for the fifth year running school children across Lincolnshire will be given a taste of opera. During the workshops students will be working and learning about the ingredients and foundation of opera - drama, music, story-telling and expressive emotion. For many it will be their first experience of live professional singing and they will go on to perform a short piece prior to the free screening which this year will be held on Saturday 1 July."

Festival favourites Flame Oz will be returning once again visiting market towns to work with participants to learn new skills which will be presented as part of the evenings show.

This year, SO Festival is proudly supporting community groups in Louth and Woodhall Spa to put on their own cultural events. We hope to continue to see growth in arts and culture sector across our county and will look forward to bringing you a diverse offering in 2017. More exciting news regarding these community partner events coming soon.

SO Festival was awarded National Portfolio Funding from Arts Council England in 2014 with the aim to promote and present the best festival arts and entertainment to new audiences and creating new opportunities and experiences.

Aimed at a family audience, the festival remains as one of the most exciting and innovative outdoor art festivals in the UK.

Entry and all events at SO Festival are free with the line-up and festival programme to be released soon.

SO Festival is delivered by Magna Vitae Trust for Leisure and Culture in partnership with East Lindsey District Council and Arts Council England.

Image © DT_(c)Nils Van Nieuwenhuysen

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