About

We bring live performance to unexpected places – town centres, village squares, beaches and hilltops – for everyone to enjoy.

Inside Out Dorset is an international outdoor arts festival that takes place across the county every two years. After postponing the 2020 festival due to the global pandemic, Activate was pleased to commission and present a range of UK and European artists for a festival in September 2021.

We celebrate Dorset and aim to promote our natural landscape and sense of place. Some of Dorset’s most remarkable urban and rural spots are transformed with experiences that touch hearts and minds like nothing else.

At the heart of what we do is a belief that performing arts should be accessible for all – no matter what your experience or background. Therefore, all of Inside Out Dorset 2021 free to attend.

Experience extraordinary events in extraordinary places.

In everything we do, we have just two rules. Anything’s possible. And everyone’s invited.

Our pledge to the environment

This year’s Inside Out Dorset took place at five of Dorset’s remarkable urban and rural locations: Moors Valley Country Park & Forest, Poole, Christchurch, Symondsbury Estate and Weymouth.

We are committed to providing a quality arts programme in a way that ensures safe and healthy workspaces, COVID-safe events and gatherings for participation, and minimising our impact on the environment. We took several steps to ensure this happened. Here’s some of the things we did:

  • Many of our events took place in natural landscapes to raise awareness of their environmental importance. Our event management planning ensured we created no negative environmental impact.
  • We used fewer diesel-powered generators at this year’s festival.
  • We provided drinking water points and asked artists, crew and audiences to bring their own water bottle to all our events.
  • We encouraged our artists to travel in more environmentally-friendly ways.
  • We reduced our print marketing materials.
  • We joined the Climate Declares Emergency movement.


We also encouraged our visitors to consider their relationship to the environment at our events. Here’s what we suggested:

  • Choose a ‘greener’ way to get to our events – walk, bike, car share or use public transport.
  • Bring your own water bottle to our events – we have drinking water points for you to use.
  • Take your litter home with you.
  • Remember to dress for the weather and visit our website for more up to date information

Support Us

Activate is a charity and we produce the Inside Out Dorset festival. Without you, the work we do connecting communities, breaking down barriers and celebrating our landscape is not possible. To make sure Inside Out Dorset continues, please consider making a donation.

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