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We began Festival of Voice (FOV) in 2016 as an alternative way for us to commission new work while creating an atmosphere for unique collaborations.

The festival would celebrate the voice in all its forms - bringing artists and audiences together, to hear and be heard through music, opera, theatre, visual art and talks.

Festival of Voice 2016

The first festival ran from 3 – 12 June, 2016 across multiple venues in Cardiff with an amazing lineup along with plenty of great moments including Van Morrison’s performance with Bryn Terfel, Charlotte Church's theatrical production, The Last Mermaid and a brand-new play, Before I Leave - featuring new music from Manic Street Preachers.

Rufus WainwrightRonnie Spector, Ben Folds, Scritti Politti, Alexis Taylor from Hot Chip, Candi Staton plus many more, made this a truly memorable first festival and became the catalyst for more to come.

Festival of Voice 2018

Two years later the festival returned for a 10 day run featuring new commissions, more incredible artists and a host of contemporary venues ranging from an ornate church to an indie nightclub.

The legendary Patti Smith packed out a 200 seater church for an intimate poetry reading and later performed to a sell-out crowd in our main theatre, where music icon, Elvis Costello headlined.

Billy Bragg and Nadine Shah teamed up for a Voices of Protest gig while Laura Marling rocked out with Mike Lindsay in their collaborative band, LUMP.

Angélique Kidjo had everyone up on their feet dancing while Passenger managed to make our 1,896-seater theatre feel like an intimate gig for his legion of die-hard fans.

Meanwhile the unpredictable man of Welsh music, Gruff Rhys appeared live on stage with the 72-piece BBC National Orchestra of Wales to premiere his latest album, Babelsberg for a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience.

We also experimented with our own spaces, creating a unique gig venue on our main stage with the Donald Gordon Theatre as the backdrop and the audience at the heart of the action, for Ibibio Sound Machine and Charlotte Church’s curated event, Utopia.

FOV is more than just great music though. We also featured some daring theatre productions too such as  Highway OneDouble Vision and Camille O’Sullivan’s Cave as well as Cary’s Eleri’s one-woman science-comedy-musical, Lovecraft (Not the Sex Shop in Cardiff), which toured and also visited the Edinburgh Fringe, Adelaide Fringe – picking up a Best Cabaret Award.

King Khan

Gŵyl 2021, March 6-7

4 FESTIVALS, 2 DAYS, 1 AMAZING LINE-UP