HomeMusicEA Festival Returns to Hedingham Castle This Summer.

EA Festival Returns to Hedingham Castle This Summer.


After receiving rave reviews for its inaugural event in 2021, EA Festival 2022 returns to Hedingham Castle on June 11th & 12th. The event aims to be adventurous, current and thought-provoking. “It will be a real smorgasbord, with something for everyone,” says Founder and Creative Director Joanne Ooi. “I choose issues and subjects that interest local and regional audiences but always try to present them in a way that is illuminating to audiences all over the world.”

One such subject is well-being and mental health. Ooi has invited two experts, Dr. Lauren McDonald and Dr Joanna Neill to discuss the success of psychedelic drugs for treating severe conditions like depression and trauma, and the need for legal reform to accommodate further research. Keith Abraham, who suffered severe anxiety and depression after military service in Iraq and Afghanistan, is joining the panel to talk about how ayahuasca therapy alleviated the negative emotions and stress resulting from his wartime experiences.

Paul McKenna, the world famous hypnotherapist, will be talking to John Lloyd about helping people overcome self-doubt and learning to thrive in the modern world, whilst trained psychiatrist Dr. Sue Stuart-Smith, will be discussing her book “The Well-Gardened Mind” which explains the therapeutic benefits of gardening and connecting with nature.

Michael Sheridan, author of Gate to China, will explain how British diplomatic miscalculations and the rise of the People’s Republic under Deng Xiaoping led the Communist Party to accelerate its takeover of Hong Kong – despite the promise of 50 years of freedom after 1997.

Lea Ypi will talk about the shock and confusion she felt as a teenager growing up in Albania as it shook off socialism and embraced political pluralism. Ypi is currently Professor of Political Philosophy at LSE and her book “Free: Coming of Age at the end of History” was chosen as Book of the Year by The Guardian, The New Yorker, The Financial Times, the TLSThe SpectatorNew Statesman, and the Daily Mail and serialised as Book of the Week by BBC Radio 4.

Francis Morris, Director of Tate Modern, will tackle some of the biggest questions confronting art museums such as funding, repatriation and political correctness whilst artist Maggi Hambling will chat about creativity with the art critic and historian James Cahill.

Hannah Rothschild, novelist and former Chair of the National Gallery will be talking to William Sieghart about her career built on reinvention, whilst Justine Picardie, former editor of Harper’s Bazaar and best-selling biographer, will explain why her latest book, Miss Dior: A Story of Courage & Couture, centres on the sister of Christian Dior rather than the legendary designer.

At the end of each day, the talk will stop and the music will begin. On Saturday, classical music lovers will be treated to a concert by violinist Elly Suh, celebrated as one of the leading Paganini interpreters of her generation, followed by a diverse cabaret of beguiling opera tunes from mezzo-soprano Clare Presland. Sunday’s musical finale spanning pop-rock-synth-soul genres will feature the queen of East Anglia’s indie rock scene, Bessie Turner, plus hot newcomers, Maya Law and Mosiah Levi.

Cambridge Art Fair, led by East Anglian art dealer, Charlie Hart, will take over all three floors of Hedingham Castle’s one-thousand-year-old Norman keep, giving audience members a feast for the eyes to complement the food for thought provided in the Festival marquee.

With such a breath taking array of subjects including art, fashion, history, literature, politics, music, poetry, wellbeing, wine, gardening, China and even psychedelic drugs – it promises to be an incredibly fascinating and entertaining weekend.

Click here to view Grapevine’s 2022 festival guide.




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