Let’s hear it for the Norfolk and Norwich Festival volunteers!
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017
While audiences are enjoying the Norfolk and Norwich Festival's array of events, an army of volunteers are working hard to make sure everything goes smoothly.
This year there are more than 120 volunteers who have joined the festival team, and they are doing everything from being event stewards to Adnams Spiegeltent hosts to festival drivers.
William Galinsky, the festival's artistic director, said he wanted to say a big thank you to them all for giving up their time to help make the festival a success.
'They are hugely important - we could not pull off such a big festival without the volunteers,' said Mr Galinsky.
'So many of them come back each year and some have done the festival longer than I have. They bring a lot of enthusiasm and love to the festival. They are just great.'
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Among them is Gavin Sargent, a 52-year-old voluntary mentor who lives in Eaton Rise, and who is volunteering at the festival for a fifth year.
When asked why he enjoyed being a volunteer, he said: 'Number one, it feels like a family, number two, you never know what you might be doing and you end up seeing things which are amazing and sometimes get to meet the artists. I think the festival is just the most brilliant, enlightening, life-affirming fun.'
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Geraldene Dent, 62, a retired HR worker from Norwich, is also returning for a fifth year.
'It's nice meeting up with everyone again,' she said.
'I love the general buzz around the city that you get and the variety of things you get involved in.'
Meanwhile drama graduate Sam Phelps, 24, from Sprowston, is enjoying being part of the volunteer team for the first time.
He said: 'I wanted to get more immersed in the arts and culture of Norwich and I thought this was a great opportunity to do that.'
Lauren Kelly, a 22-year-old business studies student at the University of East Anglia, is also a newcomer to festival volunteering.
She said: 'I wanted to get involved in the art scene here in Norwich as much as I can and just be immersed in Norwich life. The festival is such a big part of Norwich and there are some amazing opportunities to do things that you would not normally be able to do.'
VOLUNTEERS SHARE THEIR TOP FESTIVAL EVENTS NOT TO MISS
Some of the volunteers' top tips for festival events not to miss.
Gavin Sargent: 'I always think anything in the Adnams Spiegeltent is definitely worth seeing.
'The Arms of Sleep at the Assembly House sounds amazing to, as does Chotto Desh at the Theatre Royal.'
Sam Phelps: 'I'm really excited for The Story Machine.
'The VR Playground looks great too. It's just a completely immersive experience and you are thrown into a different world.
'It is something very unique.'
Geraldene Dent: 'Everything at the Adnams Spiegeltent is always good and the atmosphere is amazing.'
Lauren Kelly: 'The Garden Party in Chapelfield Gardens is a great free event for everyone.
'The VR Playground also looks amazing as well.
'I'm also looking forward to the Art and Sexuality event in the Adnams Spiegeltent.
Norfolk and Norwich Festival runs until May 28. For more information about the events mentioned above, visit www.nnfestival.org.uk
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