In 2014 we took our festival to Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, and fell in love with the town. Over the years we have worked closely with the council and local businesses and have always been made to feel very welcome. We are proud to call Huddersfield our home and are keen to grow our base in the local community. Our intention is to continue our work, providing new opportunities for local and international communities to engage with high quality music and the arts, by bringing artists, musicians, makers and similar creative folk from all over the world to the festival.
We don’t just be bring people to town for a one-off event, however. We work closely with individuals and businesses in the area. We continue to work with artist Tony Wade of Edgeland Arts (formerly Faceless Arts) and others to put on an expanding range of community-based arts and music events in the period leading up to the festival (such as the flash mobs, splash mobs, platform performances and pop-up events we put on in 2014).
The purpose of the festival in bringing together people from across the country and around the world is not simply to create a weekend of world-class arts, and entertainment featuring the ukulele. We aim to create a legacy so that any new-found interests in music or the arts more generally might continue to flourish long after the festival has ended.
In support of this we bring artists with whom we have collaborated, to clubs and groups around the country for workshops, performances and tuition.
We are also keen to hear your thoughts as you read this page. If you have ideas, do get in touch. We are happy to consider other ways of reaching out to people. We welcome any suggestions via email, comments or via any of our social media outlets.
SOME EXAMPLES OF OUR WORK OVER THE YEARS:
Working Closely With Local Groups - A Banner Story
You may have noticed the colourful banners on our festival main stage. These have been developed over the first 5 years of the festival working with Faceless Arts and local artist Tony Wade.
Each of these banners was made by holding workshops with community groups ranging from young mothers to retired miners, AgeUK, users of local libraries and more. We have worked with old, young, able-bodied and those facing challenges. In each instance, people were encouraged to share their own memories of music in silk paintings which became the banners seen on the MainStage each year.
Splash Mobs, Community Song & Platform Performances
One of the things we love about the ukulele community is the way that you can show up to a uke gathering in any state. It doesn’t matter if you’ve had a great day or a properly challenging year. When we started GNUF, we were keen to build on that spirit of inclusivity and openness.
Over the years, we have performed as a festival team at a miners gala in Pontefract. We’ve held a splash mob in support of a local swimming baths. We have invited folks from near and far to join us in a sing along of, “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” at the Huddersfield Food Festival and we’ve brought Dead Mans Uke to town to perform on the railway station platform for commuters arriving to start their week. Community matters and we believe that, to have a proper impact, we must do more than bring an event to town once a year. We are GNUF and we engage with communities in and beyond the ukulele world. We believe that matters.