Bournemouth has a year-round arts offer, with live music, visual arts, classical concerts, spoken word, film, performance and dance. Arts Bournemouth presents the annual Arts by the Sea Festival as well as unusual and enjoyable arts events through the year, including its much loved pop-up cinema events. Visit Arts Bournemouth for more information.
World-class contemporary dance performances and classes take place at Pavilion Dance South West, a national centre of excellence for dance located behind the Bournemouth Pavilion Theatre, whilst the The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (BSO) provides world-class orchestral music across the world.
BSO ensembles take music into the community, performing at smaller and more unusual venues, whilst the BSO’s contemporary music ensemble Kokoro is at the forefront of commissioning and performing works by living composers. As part of BSO Resonate, musicians also take part in an extensive array of education and community projects.
The Arts University College at Bournemouth (AUCB) is one of only fifteen higher education institutions in the UK devoted solely to the study of art, design and media. The University College has been providing specialist education for over a century and enjoys a strong reputation, both nationally and internationally. The Gallery at the AUCB offers a unique space in the South West for the contemporary arts and has regional and national recognition. Open to the public, the newly designed space includes a café with indoor and outdoor seating. AUCB artists often produce very good off-site exhibitions at various venues around the town.
The O2 Academy in Boscombe, housed in a spectacular former opera house, and the Bournemouth International Centre both attract big name bands and DJs, whist smaller venues play host to the town’s vibrant live local music scene, comedy and spoken word performances on a regular basis. Arts Bournemouth Cinema presents ‘pop-up’ cinema events at various times during year.
Contemporary theatre and outdoor performances are produced and developed by Activate which produces and develops contemporary theatre, community dance and outdoor celebrations/festivals in Dorset and is one of the key partners in Bournemouth’s annual Arts by the Sea Festival.
The annual Bournemouth Arts by the Sea Festival (20th September - 12th October) attracts international artists as well as presenting some of the best regional and local arts. The festival, which runs for around a month in the autumn, is multi-art form, with the best outdoor performance, dance, film, digital art, sculpture, live music, light installations and sound. Many events are free and children's events also feature.The festival is generously supported by Bournemouth Borough Council and Arts Council England and the programme is in partnership with the BSO, Pavilion Dance South West, Activate, AUCB and others.
For more information about the arts including what’s on, news and the Arts by the Sea Festival please visit Arts Bournemouth.