The team behind the award winning Ventnor Fringe Festival is delighted to announce an ambitious new project to create a year round multi use arts venue and independent record store on the Island.
The Ventnor Exchange, which it is hoped will be located in the former Ventnor Post Office on Church Street, will provide a unique cultural centre for the town and provide a year round base for the Fringe and it’s activities.
Subject to obtaining relevant permissions, the Fringe hope to open the Exchange in April 2014 with a weekly vinyl market on Fridays and Saturdays stocking both the latest releases and vintage classics. The store would also host special ‘in store’ performances, talks and debates as well as serve fresh coffee and even contain a small bar open into the evening.
From May 2014 the building will also be equipped to transform into a Studio Theatre with a full programme of performances during the week. Hosting work from both visiting companies and work produced by the Exchange and it’s team of associate artists, it is planned to be a unique venue showcasing emerging talent. Inspired, as the festival was, by Edinburgh, where the Traverse Theatre (now housed in a purpose built £3.3 million building) was first formed in 1963 in an abandoned brothel, and has gradually developed into an internationally recognised venue specialising in staging new writing.
Initial plans for the venue were announced by the organisers at a Christmas party held at East Dene Mansion in Bonchurch where the Festival Director, Jack Whitewood, described the project as the ‘Next exciting steps in our journey to develop a unique creative hub in Ventnor’
Regular updates on the progress of the project will be available on the Ventnor Fringe’s website and social media.
Today also marks the opening of applications for the fifth Ventnor Fringe Festival which this year is expanding to six days running from Tuesday 12th – Sunday 17th August 2014 and will once again also coincide with both the Ventnor Carnival and Isle of Wight Film Festival. Artists of any creative medium invited to apply and artists are entitled to keep 100% of their own ticket sales. Last year more than 350 artists performed at the Festival travelling from across the world. For more information please visit www.vfringe.co.uk
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