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Rochdale's FestiDale wants your local story

Fun in a tent: the Royal Exchange's travelling venue moves to Rochdale
Fun in a tent: the Royal Exchange's travelling venue moves to Rochdale

The Royal Exchange's eco-friendly mobile theatre The Den is at Kingsway Park High School, Rochdale August 8-18 for FestiDale, a festival of new voices and established performers.

Festidale offers space for people from the borough and beyond to showcase local artists and opportunities, and with a pay-what-you-can model, there is no bar to attending any of the productions, workshops and activities. The complete festival programme will be announced shortly.

The Rochdale Ambassadors and Champions, who have been working with the Royal Exchange since 2023, have programmed the festival, which features Tales of the Dale, based on collecting hundreds of stories from community centres, hospices, libraries, sports centres, schools, clubs and other civic spaces, woven into a live audio experience performed in the den by a company of professional actors and community members.

These stories will be collected in person or on the Royal Exchange website, so if you have a story to tell about Rochdale – its undiscovered gems, favourite bits or the places that mean the most to you – check out where and when you can meet the Story Collectors to share your stories in person, or through the Royal Exchange website here.

The Royal Exchange is also looking for Rochdale locals to work with professional actors to bring the gathered stories to life. The opportunity is open to anyone in Rochdale aged 15 or over, with no performing experience necessary.

Performances will take place from August 15-17, with rehearsal sessions in the weeks before and casting sessions from mid-July. The details and dates are here.

The Royal Exchange is working with several organisations across the festival, including the Rochdale Development Agency, Culture Co-op, Kingsway Park High School and Touchstones, with Bridgewater Hall, Cartwheel Arts, M6 Theatre Company and Skylight Circus all making contributions.

The Exchange's Local Exchange prohgramme is supported by the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and The Oglesby Charitable Trust.

More info here


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