First Light, the 24-hour, non-stop multi-arts and science festival will be returning to Lowestoft in 2020. Events will begin on Lowestoft’s sandy South Beach at noon on Saturday 20 June and will run continuously until midday on Sunday 21 June.
£200,000 of funding had already been agreed by East Suffolk Council and now Arts Council England have confirmed their support with an additional £198,000.
Genevieve Christie and Wayne Hemingway, festival directors, said:
"We are absolutely delighted that both East Suffolk Council and Arts Council England and have agreed to fund the festival again. More than 30,000 people joined us at the inaugural event last year and experienced the highest quality dance, music, arts and science programmed in collaboration with the region’s foremost cultural organisations including Dance East, Snape Maltings and national science institutions CEFAS and the Natural History Museum.
It transformed the beach and seafront into a welcoming, social space, enriching the local arts ecology with opportunities for local artists and performers to showcase their skills alongside world class talent including Mercury award-winning musician Talvin Singh, Six Music DJ Gilles Peterson and award-winning film director Danny Boyle. Having seen the impressive power of the local community to support and celebrate their place at an event like this, we are excited to begin programming for this year’s festival."
Cllr Craig Rivett, Cabinet Member for Economic Development at East Suffolk Council said:
"This is really good news, not just for Lowestoft but for the whole region. We have worked incredibly hard to secure the return of the First Light Festival after the success of the event last year and we cannot wait to welcome visitors from all over the country and even beyond to the town and our incredible golden beaches.
Lowestoft has proved that it can stage a world class event and local people have shown how much this Festival means to them. We are delighted to fund the event and the support from the Arts Council indicates a real faith in the town to deliver."
The festival programme will be launched at the end of March at the CEFAS building in Lowestoft, details to follow.