Henley Youth Festival Big Weekend

Plans have just been finalised for an exciting HYF weekend of art and sport. Art workshops, film screenings, the annual Stonor Run, the HYF art exhibition and ice cream and silhouettes in the Square all take place on from 15 to 17 March. A programme of free art workshops for children aged 5 – 18 is sponsored by HEDFAS – the Henley Decorative and Fine Arts Society and the annual Stonor Run for primary school teams will take place at Stonor Park by kind permission of Lord and Lady Camoys.  Both sponsors have supported HYF through much of its 20 year history.

PeterRushThe HYF Art Exhibition will run from 15–18 March at Henley Youth Centre but art activities kick off earlier in March with a plastic and paper sculpture workshop for older students (aged 11 – 18) on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd March also at the Centre. The workshop will be led by professional artist Peter Rush (www.peterrushart.co.uk) who has worked with HYF before and last year brought his giant praying mantis into the Square.  Peter was a free-lance illustrator for the BBC for 25 years but now concentrates on painting and paper sculpture. Young people can attend for one or two days and choose what to sculpt from materials provided.

On Saturday 16 March HYF comes to town with two free art workshops.  James Parsons, from the Crazy Comic Club (www.crazycomicclub.co.uk) returns this year to run four, hour long, workshops on the theme of ‘Back to the Future’ in the Kings Barn. Designed for young people aged up to 14, these workshops will involve making X-Ray specs and creating time-travel magic pictures. HYF Art Co-ordinator, Charlotte Purchas says, “James’ workshops were hugely popular last year so try and book early to avoid disappointment.”

Subject to final confirmation new artists Fire the Inventor (www.firetheinventor.co.uk) will take over D2, also on Saturday, with a practical workshop for children aged 8 – 14 that combines art, science and technology to create a piece of mechanical art.

These workshops are all sponsored by HEDFAS which has been working with HYF for many years to fund opportunities outside school for young people to create art in many forms and to meet professional artists. Louise Marten, who co-ordinates HEDFAS work with HYF says, “HEDFAS is delighted to be able to support HYF in this way and offer some new and different creative experiences to young people in Henley. We hope as many children as possible will take part in these workshops. They are completely free and it’s easy to book a place.”

Also on Saturday roving silhouette artist Charlie Burns will be working outside in the Square cutting silhouettes of children. On Sunday 17 March entrants to the HYF Film Competition can see their entries on the big screen at the Regal.

Students or parents can book a place any of the workshops by emailing Jane Gray on jane.gray@btclick.com or call her on 07913 184548. Film makers have until Friday 1 March to get their entries in – details a www.hyf.org.uk. Any child who wants to run in the Stonor Run should contact their school running club or PE teachers.