Thursday, 23 October 2014

Brighton Early Music Festival – A Treat for the Curious

Today we hand over to another of our guest bloggers - Georgina Hawkins who is a Graduate Trainee working for the Brighton Early Music Festival (BREMF)...

This is my first year going to Brighton Early Music Festival and I must say I am really excited. As a trainee for the festival I have been working behind the scenes, using everything from violas to cupcakes to hype up the festival (and I still have a few ideas up my sleeve!) I am really enjoying being a part of the BREMF team, it's giving me great experience promoting something I love, what more could I ask for?

I absolutely love early music, which makes it almost impossible to choose my favourite event. Once again BREMF has put on a range of performances which really do cater for everyone. The festival brings the vibrancy and creativity of Brighton to Early Music which I think is really unique and makes early music even more fascinating.

I am particularly excited to see Grand Tour Shorts, performed by an array of artists on Saturday 1st November. It looks to be an exotic and interesting event involving lots of different styles of music. We are exploring Music for Compline (25th Oct), uncovering Bach’s Secret Addiction (2nd Nov) and will be feeling the Passions of Venice (24th Oct); it’s going to be so exciting!

Photo Credit: Eric Richmond
BREMF is early music at its best and really accessible. Not only this, but it does something new with music every year, it really does keep you on your toes.

One of my duties as a trainee is to promote on social media, and this year we have #lovemusic on facebook and twitter. It’s one of the ways we’re getting early music out into the world and I am looking forward to see who tweets it during the festival. If you #lovemusic and want to experience something new, then you should come and try the Brighton Early Music Festival. 

So what more could you want? If you're even just the tiniest bit curious come along to one of our events and see what we are about! Early music can be enjoyed by anyone, that’s what #lovemusic is about.

Highlights from 26 events include:
  • The Night Shift - 17/10 @20:30, The Marlborough Pub & Theatre.
    Two half-hour sets of laid back classical from the OAE in the pub
  • Passions of Venice - 24/10 @ 22:00, St George’s Church, Kemptown.
    Half an hour of passionate music from romantic renaissance Venice.  Don’t forget your mask!
  • Music for Compline - 25/10 @ 22:15, St Bartholomew’s Church.
    A cappella music by candle light from 16th Century England.  Free event.
  • The Grand Tour Shorts - 1/11 from 11:00, Latest Music Bar.
    Half hour slots throughout the day featuring new generation artists.
  • Bach’s Secret Addiction - 2/11 @ 14:00 and 16:30, The Old Market, Hove.
    Pure indulgence and decadence, 18th Century style.  Coffee, cakes and music.
  • Nine Daies Wonder - 7/11 @ 20:00, St George’s Church, Kemptown.
    The longest dance ever! A wild evening of music, dance and strange instruments from Elizabeth England.
Tickets from £5.
Find out more at

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Giraffe is a buzzy burger and cocktail joint in the hip n happening North Laine

Last week Charlotte and I were treated to what I can only describe as an evening of indulgence of the foodie kind. After a full-on day in the office we made our way across a very busy cultural quarter – New Road was thronged - to the newly revamped Giraffe burger and cocktail restaurant. We were soon ensconced in our seats by the window with a first-rate vista of the North Laine fraternity; I love people watching.
American diner-style music and enthusiastic, friendly waiting staff make for a relaxed,informal ambience and the menu’s choice of laden burgers and contemporary cocktails give it a distinct ‘live for the moment’ edge.

A choice of beef patty or chicken in a bun is the main menu staple with an assortment of salady bits, cheeses, bacon, and pickles to set each creation apart. There are of course veggie options including all of the above plus falafels or halloumi.

While we deliberated, I grazed my way through a very large plate of nachos, piled high with melted cheese, guacamole, sour cream and a fiery roasted chipotle salsa - which added a pleasant smoky flavour - while Charlotte chose a more modest portion of melted mozzarella and focaccia chips.

My trousers were beginning to tighten as the burgers arrived. Mine, a Matador, was a hearty beef patty comprised of pulled pork, chorizo, manchego and roasted red pepper tapanede, extremely tasty and satisfying to the extent that I really struggled to make inroads to the coleslaw and salad sides I’d also ordered. Charlotte’s Rodeo burger – a riot of bbq sauce, bacon and house salsa - came with onion rings which, miraculously, she doesn’t like so I unashamedly had the pleasure of these too.
Fit to bust, but still willing, we opted to share pudding. A Banana Popcorn Sundae fit for the Rydell Diner – the cafĂ© in the movie Grease – was set before us: scoops of vanilla ice cream, chopped banana, popcorn, fudge sauce, whipped cream and hot chocolate sauce, no less! On reflection I’m not sure what possessed us at this point but not wanting to miss anything we also ordered a Double Stuffed hard shake on the side. The innocent looking milkshake with an alcoholic twist involved baileys, finlandia vodka, kahlua, vanilla ice cream and oreo cookies.

We left the restaurant, slowly, and headed off to find our respective transport home. Thankfully my bike was nearby but I did struggle with the one slight incline on my ride home and I’m sure my tyres were in need of air the next day.

Giraffe is top for:

A full on blow out
Generous portions - don’t over order
Living for the moment
Eating in comfort with people you know; burgers can be messy
    I will return – with the kids; if I take them on a Saturday lunchtime I won’t need to cook tea!