Men, women, girls, boys… fix up, look sharp! WOW (Women of the World) Hull is just around the corner and it’s rammed full of inspiring talks, debates, music, comedy, art and a whole bunch more.
Running from Friday 10 – Sunday 12 March WOW Hull will take place at various city centre locations and will see trailblazers from the arts, politics and activism take part, all created by Hull UK City of Culture 2017 as part of the global WOW Festivals started by the Southbank Centre in London.
Harnessing the energy and spirit of International Women’s Day (8 March), WOW Hull kicks off on Friday 10 March at Hull City Hall with the incredible composer and singer Errollyn Wallen MBE, spoken word artist Kate Fox and Hull’s own Freedom Chorus led by conductor Alison Bullivent.
Hull lass Lucy Beaumont will be bringing her top class comedy along with Maureen Lipman in the hilarious To Hull and Back – Where Do You Think You’re Going? – an exclusive, first ever live staging of the Radio 4 sitcom which will follow the tale of a mother and daughter struggling to make ends meet, all written by Lucy herself.
Lucy, whose documentary Welcome to Hull – City of Culture airs on BBC2 this Saturday (11 February), will also be giving you the opportunity to attend an inspiring two-hour comedy masterclass on Saturday 11 March Laughing Out Loud, where she will share her advice and tips on writing. Places are limited for this one, so make sure you email to register your interest quickly to bag yourself a spot! firstname.lastname@example.org.
At the very heart of the festival, WOW Hull will be hosting a range of engaging and informative panels which include issues such as domestic abuse, inequality in the performing arts, equal pay, body image and championing care.
Panellists include an incredible line-up of inspirational women, including Hull’s Bee Lady Jean Bishop, Maxine Peake, Kingston-upon-Hull North MP Diana Johnson, Humberside Police Chief Justine Curran, Hull-born entrepreneur Michelle Dewberry, Kurdish Women’s Rights Activist Houzan Mahmood, writer Tazeen Bari, documentary Producer and BBC Radio 1 presenter as well as TV broadcaster Gemma Cairney.
Other highlights include Kate Fox previewing her new solo show on body image, The Wrong Bits, and Art Celebrating Equality, a showcase of poems, photography and songs which explore gender equality and freedom created by The Warren Youth Project.
To mix things up a bit, WOW Hull will also be uniting infamous female DJs of Hull to take to the decks for Club WOW at legendary pub, Hull Cheese.
Globally, women are uniting and making their voices heard on a scale not seen for decades, with millions taking to the streets. The fight for gender equality is more crucial now than ever and WOW Hull provides an opportunity to come together, put the debate at the heart of our daily lives and achieve change.
Madeleine O’Reilly, WOW Hull Festival Programmer
There will also be a special event with world champion boxer and Hull’s Mighty Atom Barbara Buttrick who will be joined on staged with Tommy Coyle, a celebration of Ethel Leginska, through a special concert and exhibition, speed mentoring from engineers, journalists, scientists, artists and other experts and if you’re feeling like you suffer from a lack of confidence, The Courage Queen will be sure to brighten your mood.
Be sure to get your fill of theatre with the powerful story of one Mexican woman’s fight for justice Bucket List, and The Roaring Girls new production of Weathered Estates and a new acrobatic dance performance about female friendship from the amazing SOROR.
There will also be a series of films exploring female stories and experience, identity and equality across the globe including Ovarian Psycos, Wadjda, Funny Girls, Kiki’s Delivery Service, 3000 Nights; Sold and The Fits as well as selection of WOW bites showcasing everything from authors to Judo champions.
The Creative Communities Programme supported event The Female Gaze at Kingston Art Gallery (3 – 25 March) will present a journey exploring the unique and diverse perspectives of Hull’s fantastic female artists. COUM Transmissions and Power in Woman by Sarah Lucas will also run until (until 22 March) at Humber Street Gallery.
Artist Alinah Azadeh, who has worked with the people of Hull to create Revolutionary Makers will be showcasing a fabulous large scale installation which includes the work of local craftivist objects, with Jacky Fleming commissioned portraits of Hull Trailblazers alongside work from her recent book the Trouble With Women; and Anything is Possible, an installation by JZ Flowers.
To top it off, a red carpet screening of Viceroy’s House is guaranteed to be fully fabulous, followed by a Q&A with director Gurinder Chadha OBE. Best get your glad rags on.
WOW Hull will take place from 10 – 12 March at venues across Hull city centre. To view the full line-up and purchase your tickets, visit www.hull2017.co.uk/wow #WOWHull
Day Passes for WOW Hull (£10 / £5 conc) – please note some events at WOW Hull are separately ticketed and cannot be accessed as part of the Day Pass.