Kirklees Council have announced their summer programme, which will run from May to August, for Kirklees Year of Music 2023 and promises something for everyone.

What to watch out for…

16 May: Let’s Sing! Finale – Huddersfield Town Hall

This event will bring together all the schools that have taken part in Let’s Sing! Listen out for the song ‘Into the Light’ – a song for Kirklees Year of Music – sponsored by the National Lottery Community Fund and Musica Holme Valley. This uplifting song was written at a two-day workshop with Henry Bateman, and students from All Saints Catholic College, Newsome Academy and Honley High. The song has been professionally produced by Henry and gifted to primary schools to celebrate KYOM23. The finale concert will see hundreds of young people performing on-stage conducted by Musica Director Thom Meredith.

8 June: From Pub To Pulpit – Huddersfield Town Hall

Featuring the Town Hall’s fantastic organ played by David Pipe this unique event combines classical, choral and folk music. David will be Joined by acapella folk group Broomdasher, instrumental trio Coracle – led by Paul Hutchinson of the legendary Belshazzar’s Feast, and Holmfirth Choral Society to celebrate the music of composer Ralph Vaughan Williams.  There will be plenty of opportunities to sing along too.

11 – 16 July: HERD– Various Locations

A genre-defying musical mash-up of epic proportions, HERD is a major new project devised by composer Orlando Gough and produced by Artichoke for Kirklees Year of Music. This vibrant, musical soundscape and major participatory project traces the cultural and industrial story of Kirklees, through its many musical traditions. From brass to boliyaan to choirs and more, there will be music for everyone taking over the district, broadcast by a specially-crafted flock of oversized sheep sculptures wired for sound.

Sounds artists announced taking part include: Chris Ruffoni, Jaydev Mistry, Jo Kennedy, Yorkshire Sound Women Network, Monty Adkins, Rob Crisp, HOOT, Sam Hodgson, Shabnam Khan, Sunil Kalyan

6 August: BBC Proms at Dewsbury with Laura van der Heijden and pianist Jâms Coleman

The world’s greatest classical music festival comes to Dewsbury! Former BBC Young Musician of the Year Laura van der Heijden and pianist Jâms Coleman present a programme of 20th and 21st-century music for cello and piano at Dewsbury Town Hall

Festivals to enjoy

Throughout the summer, Kirklees will also be home to a number of festivals exploring music and culture including:

Piano Festival (May)
Holmfirth Festival of Folk (May)
Pride on St George’s Square in Huddersfield (17 June)
Deighton Carnival (24 June)
Sangam Festival (July & August)

Plus the return of two much-loved events in Greenhead Park – Sangam Mela and Huddersfield Carnival on 7 and 8 July.

Even more music in Kirklees

7 May – 27 August: Bands in the Park – In various venues across Kirklees

Summer Bands in the Park is back for 2023. Weekend concerts will take place from the Coronation weekend to end of August in a variety of locations across the district.

11 May: Festival of Conversations: In Conversation with Dame Evelyn Glennie

In this very special launch event for Festival of Conversations, Supriya Nagarajan, Artistic Director of Manasamitra will be in conversation with Dame Evelyn Glennie. They will explore the wealth of Dame Evelyn’s experience as the first full-time solo percussionist in the world and her unique approach to sound at Dewsbury Town Hall.

13 May: Eurovision Party– Lawrence Batley Theatre

Celebrate the night of music and throw a massive Euro-bonanza full of glitz and glamour without a “NIL-POINTS!” in sight! The watch-party is free but must be booked in advance.

27 May: The Young ‘Uns Cleckheaton Folk Festival Spring Concerts

As part of KYOM23, the team behind Cleckheaton Folk Festival present the second in its series of special concerts with The Young ‘Uns as a part of their Tiny Notes tour taking place at Dewsbury Town Hall.

3 June: WOVEN IN KIRKLEES – STRUT: fashion+Identity+Music

KYOM23 is bringing its music stage to the opening event of WOVEN in Kirklees. STRUT is a free family day of fashion, music and fun outside Dewsbury Town Hall. Bands performing include alt-folk duo Before Breakfast and 8-piece Klonk mixing klezmer, Balkan, funk, jazz, metal and hip-hop.

12 June: Organic Doom Vol. 1 featuring Arð and Pantheist 

Fans of heavy metal and organ music are in for a unique, unforgettable experience as two doom metal bands join forces with a celebrated pipe organ for a live concert at Huddersfield Town hall.

17 June: Pride– St George’s Square, Huddersfield

Pride returns with performances on its music stage, stalls and much more.

17 – 18 June: Grand Northern Ukulele Festival 

This multi-award-winning event is quirky, bold, welcoming and back for 2023! GNUF is one-of-a-kind featuring ukuleles and so very much more! This extraordinary event features world-class live music, inspiring workshops, chances to sing & play along at the Lawrence Batley Theatre.

Saturday 24 June: Deighton Carnival

Deighton Carnival is back for its 22nd anniversary edition hosted by Swaytel, this year’s theme is Deighton Celebrates Kirklees Year of Music. Featuring a colourful carnival procession, stage show, sports tournaments, stalls, funfair and much more at the Deighton Centre.

7 July: Tongue Fu – Dewsbury Town Hall

A special Dewsbury edition of Tongue Fu, one of the UK’s leading spoken word and music events. Poets, writers and storytellers take to the stage amplified by the quick-witted improvisers of the Tongue Fu band. Part gig, part experiment; this is a high energy, big hearted show with wide appeal at Dewsbury Town Hall.

8 July – Huddersfield Carnival, Greenhead Park

Get into the carnival atmosphere with live music, headline performances, delicious food and family fun.

9 July: Sangam Mela – Greenhead Park

Celebrate the music and culture of South Asia at this one-day event

17 July –18 August: Sangam Festival: A Celebration of South Asian Heritage

Taking place during South Asian Heritage Month, Sangam Festival is a community event celebrating South Asian arts, culture and heritage. It brings people together in a spirit of celebration, positivity and harmony. Featuring children and family activities, music and dance, books and poetry, talks, workshops, heritage trails, exhibitions and more.

6 August: Prince Reimagined

Prince, known for his incredible musicianship and flamboyant stage presence, influenced generations of musicians, singers and fans. Now Hardeep Singh Sahota reimagines Prince’s prolific and eclectic songbook for a very special event at Lawrence Batley Theatre. This will give a new experience to long-standing fans and introduce the music to inspire younger generations.

Throughout the year: Kirklees Museums & Galleries Programme 

Enjoy a series of special music events at Kirklees Museums & Galleries this summer. Follow a Year of Music trail at Bagshaw Museum, where you can discover and learn about the musical objects on display, experience Music in the Gardens at Tolson Memorial Gardens and pick up a map and explore the Orchestra Trail at Oakwell Hall.

Other musical activity for Kirklees Year of Music

Various Dates: Music of Tomorrow – Managed by Yorkshire Youth & Music for KYOM23 the music industry strand of the programme is offering two free opportunities for young people aged 16 – 24 to develop experience in music production and creation. Weekly 2-hour sessions start 2 May followed by a 4-day programme from 17 – 20 July.

21 June: Make Music Day – KYOM23 will bring live music and workshops to schools across Kirklees during the whole month of June to tie in with Make Music Day.

Colin Parr, Strategic Director Environment and Climate Change at Kirklees Council said; “Moving into the Summer months, we hope to welcome even more people to Kirklees to experience the music and culture of the district. We are thrilled that – from the Coronation weekend we’ll be able to bring free music concerts to our beautiful parks and green spaces. We are also particularly delighted to welcome HERD, which will tell the musical story of Kirklees through an audio-visual spectacle.”