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Liverpool Festivals to enjoy in 2021

Liverpool is one of the world’s biggest festival cities with celebrations of music, art, performance and literature attracting hundreds of thousands of people to its streets, parks and venues each year.

The last 12 months have been difficult for everyone, not least festival organisers who have been forced to cancel, postpone or work creatively to move their events online because of the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

But you can’t keep Liverpool down for long, and plans are afoot for many of the city’s annual festival events - and their live audiences to return - in 2021.

Here are details about some of the festivals that currently plan to entertain the city this year.

All individual dates and details are dependent on Coronavirus restrictions in place at the time.

Liverpool Biennial – Various venues

March 20-June 6

The postponed 11th Biennial, titled The Stomach and the Port, is due to take place at venues across Liverpool this spring – including at the former Lewis’s Building.

More than 50 leading and emerging artists from the UK and abroad including Frieze Artist Award winner Alberta Whittle, Liverpool-born artist Linder, Rashid Johnson and Jenna Sutela will take part in the 12-week festival of exhibitions, screenings, sculpture and sound - the largest contemporary visual arts festival in the UK.

Other artists taking part in the Biennial include Judy Chicago, who previously created a mural the Sgt Pepper at 50 celebrations in 2017, Black Obsidian Sound System and David Zink Yi.

And the festival is also due to include, as always, the John Moores Painting Prize exhibition at the Walker Art Gallery.

More details HERE

Independents Biennial – various venues

March 20-June 6

The Independents Biennial runs alongside the Liverpool Biennial, offering a platform for artists from across the Merseyside area to show their work in public.

Artists who had already received commissions for the 2020 festival will be involved in the 2021 event which, like its Biennal partner, plans to take over a city centre empty space which will be turned into a giant gallery.

In 2018 the Independents' event involved 530 artists at 75 venues.

More details HERE

Futurama – Invisible Wind Factory

April 3-4

Futurama, coming to the Invisible Wind Factory at the North Docks, is billed as a two-day celebration of the original, independent ethos and inventiveness of post-punk music past, present and future.

Organisers say the 1980s sparked an amazing period of creativity in Britain with new experimental sounds, graphic design, legendary record labels, unforgettable fanzines, innovative photography, cult fashion and alternative styles.

Can they spark another revolution in subculture in this ‘utopian festival for dystopian times’?

More details HERE

Threshold – Baltic Triangle

April 9-10

The team behind Threshold are promising two days of music, art and discussion at the postponed festival which has announced new dates in 2021.

The special, scaled down mini-festival and industry event, titled Across the Threshold, will showcase a snapshot of some of the North West and UK’s best grass roots music, visual arts and innovative performance.

It will also host panels, talks and workshops centred around the future of the festival, the Baltic Triangle and the creative community as a whole.

More details HERE

Liverpool Sound City – Baltic Triangle

April 29-May 2

Red Rum Club and Rejjie Snow are two of the headliners at the 2021 Sound City which organisers are planning for three days in the spring.

The Mysterines, The Snuts, Jamie Webster, The Lathums, Louis Berry and Working Men’s Club have also been signed up to perform with more artists yet to be announced.

Sound City aims to capture the vibrancy of Liverpool with a festival which sees established names perform alongside a constant stream of local, national and international emerging talent.

More details HERE

Positive Vibration – Baltic Triangle

June 11-12

The city-based Festival of Reggae is planning two days of musical celebration in the Baltic Triangle.

Its packed 2021 line-up includes African Head Change, DJ Vadim, Don Letts, Gentleman’s Dub Club, Hollie Cook, poet Levi Tafari, Mad Professor, Ruts DC, The Next Men, The Twinkle Brothers and Zion Train.

More details HERE

Pride in Liverpool

July 31

Pride was one of many events postponed by the pandemic last year, and it plans to be back bigger and brighter than ever this July.

The event, which can attract up to 50,000 people making it one of the biggest gay Pride festivals in Europe, will take place in Liverpool City Centre although specific details of the programme are yet to be revealed.

More details HERE

Let’s Rock Liverpool – Wavertree Playground

July 31

Let’s Rock - the UK’s biggest retro music festival - hopes to return to Liverpool in 2021 for one day of top tunes performed by some pop favourites.

The expected line-up includes Adam Ant, ABC, Wet Wet Wet, Kim Wilde, Howard Jones, Sister Sledge, Toyah, Heaven 17, Belinda Carlisle, Hazell Dean and Tenpole Tudor.

Music fans can opt for a general admission ticket or splash some cash on the VIP ‘Club Tropicana’ option which includes fast-track entry, luxury loos and refreshments.

More details HERE

International Beatleweek – various venues

August 25-31

Beatleweek went online for 2020 so organisers the Cavern will be hoping Fab Four fans can celebrate all things John, Paul, George and Ringo in person this summer.

The line-up of special guests has already been announced and includes May Pang, Steve Holley, Laurence Juber, Earl Slick, Mark Lewisohn, Hunter Davies, Andy Newmark and Tony Levin.

Events include 50 years of Let It Be, John Lennon: ‘You Are Here’ at the Philharmonic Hall where Mark McGann joins Slick, Newmark and Levin on the bill, Wings Over Liverpool at the Shankly Hotel and a special tribute to the late, great Neil Innes at the Cavern Club.

There are also two 1970-71 Solo Years concerts, and a 1970s Classic Albums evening, planned along with the annual Beatles Convention and wall-to-wall live music at the Cavern Club and Cavern Pub.

More details HERE


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