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Artist-in-Residence announced for IF: Milton Keynes International Festival 2020

Date Posted:14/01/2020

IF2020Ten days of new commissions, outdoor and large-scale performance, live music, comedy, circus, family activities and free events Friday 17 to Sunday 26 July 2020

IF: Milton Keynes International Festival, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, has appointed Jenny Sealey MBE, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of Graeae, as its Artist-in-Residence for 2020.
Included in The Stage 100 2020 - the list of the 100 most influential people in British theatre - in recognition of her advocacy for disabled representation in the arts, Sealey will be advising on the biennial Festival's inclusion and engagement programme.
The 2020 Festival, which runs from 17 to 26 July, will also be the first opportunity to see the work-in-progress of a new opera directed by Sealey working with Graeae. Commissioned by Festival producers The Stables to mark the venue’s 50th anniversary, The Paradis Files tells the extraordinary story of the life and career of blind 18th century composer, Maria Theresia von Paradis. The music is written by Errollyn Wallen, with libretto by Nicola Werenowska and Selina Mills.
Jenny Sealey says:
“I’m delighted to be joining the wonderful team at IF: Milton Keynes International Festival as Artist-in-Residence for 2020. I am excited to start working with the team and partners to ensure inclusion and diversity is at the heart of this summer’s Festival, both on and off stage. As a Deaf woman, directing the first opera for Graeae and The Stables for the Festival is typical of our boundary-pushing, and I am looking forward to the challenge of creating a production that is both relevant, accessible and has wide appeal.”
Monica Ferguson, CEO and Artistic Director of The Stables, and Festival Director, says:
“Producing IF: Milton Keynes International Festival gives The Stables a platform to commission and collaborate with extraordinary artists. It is an opportunity for us to reach new audiences and for artists to develop and create work. After presenting Graeae’s previous work at the Festival and discovering a shared passion for opera with Jenny, I am truly excited that she has agreed to be Artist-in-Residence for 2020 and to present the first staging of The Paradis Files.”

The full programme for IF: Milton Keynes International Festival will be announced in March 2020.