Your guide to free family fun at the Norfolk and Norwich Festival

NNF17. The Garden Party in Chapelfield Gardens. Photo: Dibs McCallum.

NNF17. The Garden Party in Chapelfield Gardens. Photo: Dibs McCallum. - Credit: Dibs McCallum

All the family are invited to a fun-filled garden party in Norwich's Chapelfield Gardens this weekend organised by the Norfolk and Norwich Festival. Arts correspondent Emma Knights finds out more about the weird and wonderful acts that will be entertaining the crowds.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Frank Bölter’s playgroundNORWICH.
Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norw

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Frank Bölters playgroundNORWICH. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival. - Credit: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival

From building giant origami to swinging into virtual worlds to playing bingo, an array of colourful and quirky performances and events awaits visitors to Norwich's Chapelfield Gardens this weekend.

The crazy acts are all descending on the city park for the Norfolk and Norwich Festival's annual Garden Party which is taking place on both Saturday and Sunday and offering lots of free fun for everyone.

The Garden Party is always one of the key highlights of the festival, and the 2017 programme has a brilliant mix of performances to entertain people of all ages.

Meanwhile nearby at The Forum there will be even more free festivities close to the Museum of the Moon which seems to have become the icon of the 2017 festival.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Cocoloco’s Willy & Wally.
Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Fest

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Cocolocos Willy & Wally. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival. - Credit: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival


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'There's plenty to see and do, there's food too or you can bring your own picnic. It's going to be a great day out,' said William Galinsky, the Norfolk and Norwich Festival's artistic director.

'One of the things I am very passionate about is bringing the arts out on to the streets, and The Garden Party is a big part of that.

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'It creates a great atmosphere and is something for families to enjoy. For me it always feels like it is the start of summer.

'Through our free outdoor programme, which includes the Garden Party, we are able to engage with tens of thousands of people each year.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Cian Kinsella’s Billy No Mates.
Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwic

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Cian Kinsellas Billy No Mates. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival. - Credit: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival

'We are able to bring some really, really interesting art out into the public space and it means that more people than ever are able to enjoy these things. It means the festival is really reaching out and having an impact on as many people as possible and I think that's very important.'

The Garden Party is on Saturday and Sunday from noon until 6pm in Chapelfield Gardens, Norwich.

FREE PERFORMANCES AND EVENTS AT THE GARDEN PARTY IN CHAPELFIELD GARDENS THIS SATURDAY AND SUNDAY:

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Dizzy O�Dare�s Baba Yaga�'s House. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norw

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Dizzy O�Dare�s Baba Yaga�'s House. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival. - Credit: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival

• Matthew Harrison's The Actual Reality Arcade - 12pm-6pm

Inspired by classic arcade games, in this life-sized interactive game zone people of all ages can shoot down aliens in the Space Invaders gallery, build with giant Tetris blocks, attempt the Marble Madness run and more.

• Thrill Laboratory's VR Playground - 12–6pm

Don a VR headset, jump on a playground swing, and be transported inside an experimental virtual reality world created by the world's only Thrill Engineer, Professor Brendan Walker.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Matthew Harrison’s The Actual Reality Arcade.
Photo: supplied by Norf

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Matthew Harrisons The Actual Reality Arcade. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival. - Credit: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival

• Wired Aerial Theatre's To Me, To You… - 1.45pm–2pm, 3.45–4pm, 5.45pm–6pm

An aerial dance show which sees a very regular couple bounce and swirl about the stage as they play with the stresses and strains of life.

• Wild n Beets's Bingo Lingo - 12pm–12.40pm, 2pm-2.40pm, 4pm–4.40pm

Comperes Beryl and Cyril want to make bingo an official Paralympic sport and invite everyone to play the game on over-sized bingo cards.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Humanhood’s Orbis.
Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Humanhoods Orbis. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival. - Credit: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival

• Frank Bölter's playgroundNORWICH - 12.30pm–3pm, 3.30pm–6pm

Get involved in building some giant origami.

• Dizzy O'Dare's Baba Yaga's House - 1.15pm–1.45pm, 3.15pm–3.45pm, 5.15pm–5.45pm

Baba Yaga's House is a ramshackle old cottage which roams the land on chicken legs while Baba flies across the landscape in her giant pestle and mortar. Although she may seem scary, she might tell your fortune - or she might just eat you!

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Wild n Beets’s Bingo Lingo.
Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Fe

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Wild n Beetss Bingo Lingo. Photo: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival. - Credit: supplied by Norfolk and Norwich Festival

• Cocoloco's Willy & Wally - 12.30pm–1.15pm, 2.30pm–3.15pm

Willy and Wally are up to their necks in rubbish and as well as talking a load of rubbish too they are putting the spotlight on climate change.

• Cian Kinsella's Billy No Mates - 4pm–4.30pm

Get involved or just sit back and have a laugh as Billy mucks about with all manner of gags, audience interaction and ridiculous skits taking us into the strange mess of our imaginations.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Wired Aerial Theatre�s To Me, To You�.
Photo: Joe Armitage.

NNF17. The Garden Party act - Wired Aerial Theatre�s To Me, To You�. Photo: Joe Armitage. - Credit: Joe Armitage

• CircusOutsideTheBox's Givin' It Welly - 3pm-3.30pm, 4.45pm–5.15pm

FREE EVENTS AT THE FORUM THIS WEEKEND:

• Luke Jerram's Museum of the Moon - Saturday and Sunday, 8am-11pm

The Museum of the Moon during the 2017 Norfolk and Norwich Festival. Photo: Sonya Duncan
. Copyright

The Museum of the Moon during the 2017 Norfolk and Norwich Festival. Photo: Sonya Duncan . Copyright: Archant 2017 - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Enjoy an out-of-this-world experience moonbathing under an inflatable moon created using detailed NASA imagery.

• Humanhood's Orbis - SaturdayMay 21, 2pm-2.20pm, 4pm-4.20pm and SundayMay 22 1pm–1.20pm, 3pm-3.20pm

A duet exploring the relationship between humankind and Earth's permanent natural satellite: the moon.

• Rabo De Foguete - SaturdayMay 21, 6pm-7pm, Sunday, 4.30pm-5.30pm

Norfolk and Norwich Festival performances take place around the Forum
Seshni Mohammed and her daught

Norfolk and Norwich Festival performances take place around the Forum Seshni Mohammed and her daughter Samia. Byline: Sonya Duncan Copyright: Archant 2017 - Credit: Sonya Duncan

A vibrant high-energy performance of Brazilian music and the spirit of carnival.

MEET ME AT THE SPIEGELTENT - FREE EVENTS AT THE ADNAMS SPIEGELTENT NEXT WEEK:

• Bounce and Rhyme Time - Tuesday, May 23, 9.45am and 10.30am

Credit as catchline

Credit as catchline - Credit: Archant

Rhymes, music and stories for children aged 0 to five.

• Doodles Paper Forest - Wednesday, May 24, 10am-12pm

Get creative with drawing and making in a mythical paper forest.

• Mamasupials - Wednesday, May 24, 1pm-2pm

NNF17. The Garden Party in Chapelfield Gardens. Photo: Chris Taylor.

NNF17. The Garden Party in Chapelfield Gardens. Photo: Chris Taylor. - Credit: Chris Taylor

Baby sling dancing.

• Hartbeeps Taster - Thursday, May 25 - 9.15am-9.45am, 10am-10.30am

Magical music adventures for little people.

• The Afternoon Social - Thursday, May 25 - 12pm-2.30pm

All ages are invited to take part in an afternoon of socialising and activities.

For more information about festival events, visit www.nnfestival.org.uk

For more Norfolk and Norwich Festival stories click here

For a full list of Norfolk and Norwich Festival events click here

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