MAC welcomes disability arts event Fast Forward Festival

Midlands Arts Centre (MAC) and Bristol Music Trust have announced Fast Forward Festival, an event focused on inclusion within music education and the music industry.

The festival will take place on Thursday 24 October to celebrate music inclusivity and challenge expectations around disabilities and music.

The event aims to bring together leading arts organisations, musical education hubs, and those working within the music industry to champion equality in music education and to encourage music making innovation.

The festival will feature a keynote speech from Jess Thom (Tourette’s Hero) and live performances from BSO Resound (the first disabled-led ensemble to ever perform at the BBC Proms).

Additionally, the event welcomes Sarah Fisher’s acclaimed show Twitch and the one day event will showcase organisations working to remove existing barriers within the industry for musicians with disabilities by investigating industry case studies from Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Drake Music, and The National Open Youth Orchestra.

The festival was founded by Bristol Music Trust and has previously taken place at Colston Hall, Bristol, and Wiltshire Music Centre.

Holly Radford, producer for MAC Makes Music, Midland Arts Centre’s inclusive music programme says: ‘MAC is proud to be hosting and co-producing Fast Forward Festival 2019 with NCIE. This as an important moment for inclusive practice, offering a vital platform to advocate for positive change across the music industry. It’s a key date for anyone working within the music sector, with genuinely great opportunities to hear from outstanding contributors from across the country – so don’t miss out, book now!’

Siggy Patchitt, head of the National Centre for Inclusive Excellence, Bristol Music Trust adds: ‘If you are a venue, an orchestra, a music education hub, or anyone working in the music industry, and are interested in exploring how inclusion is driving the creative and cultural development of some of the UKs leading arts organisations, Fast Forward Festival is unmissable.’

MAC and Bristol Music Trust are founder partners of the Alliance for a Musically Inclusive England, a movement for change throughout music education, led and supported by the charity Youth Music through National Lottery funding.

For more information about Fast Forward Festival, please visit