Festival Details

Torbay and South West of England Festival


The competitive Festival movement was already well established when the second world war broke out in 1939. Torbay had a large number of evacuees attending school for half a day only, and the Youth service backed by local residents and businesses arranged activities to occupy the children in their spare time. As a result in 1940 the first Festival was held. It's founder Bill Coysh used his musical background and business contacts to organise just 5 classes.

By the early 1950's it was the largest Festival in the South West, and it has continued to grow to what we see today, with the three main disciplines of the Performing Arts ; Dance, Speech and Drama and Music. They offer a wide range of classes to all ages from Lieder to Barbershop choirs; Piano recitals and Jazz quartets to School orchestras and pop groups; from dramatic Shakespearian scenes and Poetry recitals to Television newsreading; and from Ballet to Tap and Highland fling to Street dance via Classical Greek.