Organisers of the Isle of Wight Story Festival have announced an 'inspirational' line-up for this year's event, which will be online because of the pandemic.
A line-up of authors, illustrators, storytellers, poets and puppeteers have been revealed for the free online event over the February half term.
It will take place on Wednesday 17 February to Saturday 20 - and will include former CBeebies presenter and children’s writer, Cerrie Burnell.
Cerrie, who featured in the Guardian’s 2011 list of 100 most inspirational women, will be talking live at 11.30am on Thursday 18 February, about her
book I Am Not A Label – a stylishly illustrated anthology of stories aimed at older children, exploring the lives of 34 disabled artists, thinkers, athletes and activists from past and present.
The festival will open at 10am with a live session by its patron, Nicholas Allan, author and illustrator of numerous bestselling picture books, including The Queen’s Knickers.
He promises that his session will not only include reading and illustration from his book, Picasso’s Trousers, but magic illusion and chocolate!
Other authors featuring in a line-up to suit children of all ages include:
- ‘Alex Sparrow’ creator, Jennifer Killick; the fabulous multi-award-winning author/illustrator
- Neal Layton (who, as well as illustrating his own books, has worked with the likes of Cressida Cowell and Michael Rosen)
- Inspirational author Roopa Farooki
- Football-fan and former reluctant reader, Tom Palmer
- The Isle of Wight’s own award-winning children’s author, Kieran Larwood
Although covid restrictions mean there can’t be a physical festival this year, organisers say they are determined to give families a proper festival
One of the organisers, an author and illustrator Peta Rainford said:
“We’re aware that everyone’s had a tough year, so we’re pleased that we’re able to offer all sessions free this year.
"And the fact that the event is online, will mean many more people will be able to see the wonderful authors and performers we’ve got lined up.”
Another highlight of an exciting programme will be the return of Emergency Turtle, who charmed audiences last year with their unique blend of storytelling and puppetry.
They will be doing two live sessions on Saturday 20 February – a magical new show, followed by shadow puppet workshop where you can learn
to create your own shadow puppets.
Although the festival will be online this year, the organisers are determined it will still be a distinctively Isle of Wight festival, with sessions from many
wonderful Island-based children’s writers, illustrators, storytellers and poets including:
- Sue Bailey
- Adam Gatterell
- Jules Marriner
- Holly Medland Lees
- Peta Rainford
- Kathryn Rossati
- Zoe Sadler
- Debbie Webb.
The sessions can be accessed via the IW Story Festival website, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.
For more information, go here.