Thursday, 27 February 2014

Festivals in Brighton

Spring has officially arrived in Brighton & Hove and not because of the weather (although the sun is starting to come out!)... 

May is the month for Festivals in Brighton and for me the first sign that Spring is here is when the festivals start launching their brochures and announcing programme details as this means we are officially on our way to May madness!

Earlier this week we attended the launch of the Brighton Festival and this year the Guest Artistic Director is the acclaimed choreographer Hofesh Schecter. Naturally this year's programme has a strong dance element including Hofesh Shecter's new piece Sun. I'll also be intrigued to see Nowhere and Everywhere at the Same Time No. 2 which is an installation by William Forsythe. It seems the piece features hundreds of pendulums in a timed sequence, therefore as you move through - without touching them - the visitor becomes a dancer. The programme is not all about dance though and other highlights include a new production of 'Tis Pity She's a Whore at the Theatre Royal Brighton; Bring the Happy at Onca Gallery and The Old Market; and of course the ever-popular Children's Parade.

And in case you're wondering about the sheep, he is this years cover star...

May would be busy enough if it was just the Brighton Festival but there's so much more! Brighton Fringe will be back with a bang, and following on from the success of last year The Fringe will again be running for four weeks with over 700 events. The programme is now available online and I'm delighted to see that the Spiegeltent will be back again as well Fringe City, I'll need to take some time to really get to grips with all the craziness on offer but one show has already caught my eye - Lynn Ruth Miller at the Marlborough proving you are never too old for comedy!

HOUSE, the sister festival of Artists Open Houses, is the visual arts festival for the city and this year's lead artist has been confirmed as Yinka Shonibare whose new installation will explore the impacts of immigration on British culture. And finally the Great Escape has this week confirmed a second wave of artists taking part in the festival, including 2013 Mercury Prize nominee Jon Hopkins and Strokes’ guitarist gone solo Albert Hammond, Jr.

Oh and just before I go I have one last thing to share with you. During the launch for the Brighton Festival there was a Q&A with Hofesh Schcter and someone asked him why he likes Brighton & Hove. And I rather liked his reply, unfortunately I cannot remember it verbatim but to paraphrase...
Brighton is a really vibrant city but it is also a place where you can find peace, a quiet spot away from everyone else whether that's by the sea or somewhere else.

See you there, Charlotte

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