Lichfield Festival confirms appointment of new artistic director

Lichfield Festival has appointed a new artistic director Sonia Stevenson.

She takes charge of the programme for both the October Lichfield Literature Festival and the July multi-arts Lichfield Festival.

Sonia Stevenson

Sonia Stevenson

Sonia has already established a top reputation in arts programming as founder of the St Andrews Voices Festival and through her work with Faber Music, the Philharmonia Orchestra and Winchester Chamber Music Festival.

Festival Chairman Tony Bateman said: “We are delighted to welcome Sonia to the team and are very excited about her first project for us, the Lichfield Literature Festival.”

Sonia added: “I am thrilled to have been appointed as the new Artistic Director of the Lichfield Festival.

“This is an event with a long and prestigious history, as well as an important place in the community, and I am honoured to have the opportunity to shape its future.

“I’ve already seen some of the wonderful local support that the festival enjoys, and met the fantastic, dedicated staff who work hard behind the scenes.

“My first, hugely enjoyable, task has been to plan the October Literary Festival and I hope everyone will find something to enjoy in the wide-ranging programme.”

Tickets are now on sale for the Literary Festival, which runs from October 8 to 12 and features not only a programme of author talks, but several new attractions this year.

These include an authors’ tea party, wine-tasting, star-gazing, a conducting demonstration and a number of writing workshops.

October 11 will see an innovative new event, The Great Lichfield Book Swap, in a shop loaned by the Three Spires Shopping Centre, as well as an Antiques Market staged in Winterton’s Auction Rooms.

The traditional Literary Dinner this year will take on a 1920s theme, with special guest, the award-winning crime writer Sophie Hannah, author of the first new Poirot novel to be authorised by the Agatha Christie estate.

The daytime programme has highlights including Charles, Earl Spencer’s new book on Charles I’s killers, linguistics experts David & Ben Crystal’s fascinating and hilarious study of accents, Silent Witness by Nigel McCrery, creator of the hit TV series, and several children’s events including Tales of Beatrix Potter with Ting Tang Theatre.

The full Literary Festival programme and booking details are available on the Lichfield Festival website.