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Latitude festival – Arts Additions – Never Mind The Buzzcocks, Alan Carr, The Gate, John Burnside

| On 31, Mar 2011

– COMEDY AT LATITUDE –

Over the past five years, Latitude’s Comedy Arena has become a comedy festival in its own right. Bursting at the seams with the best comic talent in the land, crowds gather all weekend to witness a variety of hilarious turns from an unrivalled line-up.

Alan Carr has become a British institution. Like few that have come before him, his work as a presenter hasn’t overshadowed his stand-up. He is known, and equally applauded, for both. From ‘The Friday/Sunday Night Project’ to his own shows ‘Alan Carr, Chatty Man’ and ‘Alan Carr’s Celebrity Ding-Dong’, his cheeky, on-the-knuckle comic style has tantalised the masses since winning the BBC Best New Stand Up Award in 2001. He’s picked up a hefty amount of awards for his work – including two top accolades from The British Comedy Awards, one which was for Best Live Stand-Up in 2007 – but more than all of this, he has won the hearts of millions for his affable personality and quick fire gags. Crossing the boundaries between family and adult humour with adept subtlety, he’s quite simply one of our finest funny men and Latitude cannot wait to welcome him to the Comedy Arena for what will be one of THE performances of the weekend.

After 24 series, 32 hosts and 1 walk-off, the spiteful, shambolic pop quiz that is
Never Mind the Buzzcocks will be making its festival debut at this year’s Latitude. Team Captains Phill Jupitus and Noel Fielding are joined by host David O’Doherty and stars from the world of music for a raucous live version of the nation’s favourite music-based panel show. If you’re a fan of unedited comedy, stupid music videos, line-ups of extras being humiliated and comedians crudely interpreting the beginnings of pop songs then Saturday morning in the Comedy Arena is the place to be! (Comedy Arena)

Angelos Epithemiou is probably best known for his regular guest appearances on BBC 2 panel show ‘Shooting Stars’. A burger van owner who carries a plastic bag containing his belongings around with him wherever he goes found himself hosting this year’s NME Awards. The character of Angelos was created by stand-up comedian and actor Dan Renton Skinner. The comic created the character on the live comedy circuit but it was when Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer invited Angelos to join the panel show Shooting Stars that the character became well-known with TV audiences.

Irish comic and Perrier Award winner David O’Doherty joins the blistering Comedy Arena line-up. In 2008 he won the if.comedy Award for his show ‘Let’s Comedy’. Often seen in the company of his miniature electronic keyboard, his dry sarcasm comes across in both spoken and song comedy. He’s released two comic CDs, the first of which ‘Orange’ reached number 30 in the Irish singles charts in 2007. He also supported Flight of the Conchords on their Irish Arena tour, contrasting favourably with the New Zealand comic superstars. (Comedy Arena)

Mark Watson‘s observational stylings have, in the past, got him such prestigious awards as a Time Out Critics’ Choice Award and the first ever Panel prize at the if.comedies. He’s sold out multiple shows at the Sydney Opera House and has also embarked on a number of 24-hour shows. Unorthodox is a good word to describe Mark’s oeuvre. Having set himself tasks like abiding by 31 New Year’s resolutions, the progress of which he details on his blog, sustaining an interest in the world’s current events and pursuing musical ambitions, his sets are always full of new and fresh ideas. (Comedy Arena)

David Schneider first appeared in a comic venture in ‘The Day Today’ and also played fictional BBC Commissioning Editor Tony Hayers in the various Alan Partridge spin-offs. Since then he’s had various input into shows like ‘Goodness Gracious Me’, ‘The Saturday Night Armistace’ and ‘Churchill: The Hollywood Years’. With this rich comedy background, David will be bringing along a few friends to entertain everyone at the Latitude Cabaret Arena. (Cabaret Arena)

Improvisational comic Phil Nichol has been entertaining us since way back in 1993 when he was nominated for a Perrier Award on the back of Corkey and the Juice Pigs, a quirky and surreal musical trio. 13 years later he won the if.comedy Award for his solo show ‘The Naked Racist’. Not one to dodge a tricky subject, Phil’s rants and innovation in comedy have proven that it’s the material you craft from the topic that provides the laughs, not the exploitation of the subject itself. Expect some fresh ideas and original directions too, when he performs on the Comedy Arena in the summer. (Comedy Arena)

Comedian, Actor, Singer, Dancer, Entertainer and self proclaimed “show off” Charlie Baker will be putting his dancing shoes to bed after his performance on Comic Relief’s ‘Let’s Dance’ and joining Latitude festivals’ rapidly expanding line-up this Summer. His solo show ‘The Worlds Greatest Show Off’ recently debuted in Edinburgh winning The Mervyn Stutter Spirit of the Fringe Award. The Guardian call it “A superior modern take on the traditional showman” but come along and make up your own mind!

Recently listed as one of Britain’s ‘100 Funniest Men’ by readers of Zoo Magazine for Comic Relief, Chris Ramsey has earned his stripes. He’s toured with Al Murray The Pub Landlord and Russell Kane. He’s appeared on the popular BBC3 show ‘Russell Howard’s Good News’ and his 2010 solo show ‘Aggrophobic’ was a hit, dealing with his apparent phobia of confrontations. Though we doubt heckling will ever cease, certainly the respect and love he’s being shown from the comic circuit means it’ll surely be of the good natured type. (Comedy Arena)

Laura Corcoran and Matthew Jones are better known as Frisky and Mannish, a comic duo who perform pop song parodies that are just as timeless as the originals. Having performed last year’s successful ‘The College Years’, the follow-up to their first major show ‘School of Pop’ where the pair educated audiences through their covers around the country and even in Perth, Australia, they’ve been favourably compared to Bill Bailey. With the all new ‘Pop Centre Plus’ show to bring to Latitude this summer, expect more of the hilarious and sharp satirical swipes at our pop stars that these two excel in. (Cabaret Arena)

Jonny Sweet won The Edinburgh Comedy Award for Best Newcomer in 2009 for hit first show ‘Mostly About Arthur’ and hasn’t looked back since. He starred in More 4’s comic imagining of Boris Johnson and David Cameron’s school days in ‘When Boris Met Dave’ and in the revival of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore’s ‘Lost Sketches’ on BBC2. He’s a writing partner with Simon Bird and Joe Thomas from hit show ‘The Inbetweeners’ and is now working on TV and film ideas after the success of their show ‘The Meeting’. This young and up and coming star has plenty more to unveil come July. (Cabaret Arena)

Started by Jon Petrie, who has worked on shows such as ‘QI’, ‘Nevermind the Buzzcocks’ and ‘The IT Crowd’, and stand-up comedian Holly Walsh, Popcorn Comedy is a live, interactive comedy night based around short comedy films and animation. Described by the BBC as “the first truly successful interactive live stand-up show”, the regular club night takes brilliant and funny online videos, shows them to the audience and mixes it up with live stand-up too. With an almost endless resource – the internet – there’s a wealth of material to enjoy from these comic experts. (Cabaret Arena)

Cardinal Burns are Seb Cardinal and Dustin Demri-Burns who are adapt at spinning hilarious yarns from dreamt-up scenarios and have been praised by press and audiences alike. Taking sketch comedy into absurd and physical directions, their quick-fire banter and imaginative creations have taken what could be described as a tried-and-tested formula and injected life into it. Critics seem to agree so it’s worth seeing what they’ve come up with this summer as they write new material especially for Latitude Festival. (Cabaret Arena)

Colin Hoult is often seen in the company of his double-act companion Fergus Craig, and they have won awards together including a Writer’s Guild Award for Comedy. On his own, Colin has been seen on ‘Russell Howard’s Good News ‘and ‘Harry Hill’s TV Burp’, heard on ‘28 Acts in 28 Minutes’ and entertained large crowds with last year’s solo show ‘Enemy of the World’. Described as “Lewis Carroll meets ‘The League of Gentlemen’” by Time Out, this character show dealt with dark themes of paranoia and prejudice. Stitching hilarity to this seam of seriousness, Colin’s 2011 show will be one of the talking points of the comedy line-up at Latitude.

Sara Pascoe has been lurking on the fringes of comedy for a short while now. She was in the hilarious political satire series ‘The Thick Of It’ and the drama ‘Being Human’. Her debut solo show ‘Sara Pascoe vs. Her Ego’ did extremely well and she co-runs two comedy clubs; The House of Mirth and The Gypsy Hill Comedy Club. She is working on new material for Latitude, which will eventually become her new show ‘Sara Pascoe vs. The Apocalypse’. Expect more of the exquisite balance between intelligence and silliness that made her first show such a sell-out success. (Cabaret Arena)

Joanna Carolan and Pascale Wilson (Shirley and Shirley) and are thrilled to be performing at Latitude this year. Honed in from two successful Edinburgh runs and a third this year at Assembly; these girls are huge hits on the London comedy circuit. Their character-driven sketches and physical pieces are acutely observed and shock and delight audiences in equal measures. The girls are very pleased to be introducing comedienne actress, Jess Gunning as part of their Latitude show. Jess’s credits include ‘Doctor Who’, ‘Life of Riley’ and BBC2’s ‘Lizzie and Sarah’ (Julia Davis and Jessica Hynes). (Cabaret Arena)

Following various acting roles alongside current kings of comedy, like Ricky Gervais and Stephen Fry, Tiffany Stevenson took up the comic mantle in 2005, and made an impact in a lead role for the premiere of ‘Talk Radio’, headed by Stewart Lee and named as The Independent’s top ‘things to do in summer’ in 2006. She runs top London comedy club ‘Old Rope’, a consistently popular night out, and last year’s solo show ‘Dictators’ saw her balance the evil of ‘Now!’ Magazine and her own poor mother. What targets she’ll hit next we don’t know, but you’ll be amongst the first to find out. (Cabaret Arena)

Eight person sketch comedy collective The Unexpected Items recently hit the Youtube equivalent of the ‘big time’ after their upper-middle-class-baiting ‘Gap Yah’ went viral. Member Tom Williams also co-wrote the Alicia Keys parody, Newport State Of Mind. Six writers and performers, plus a production crew, make up the team whose musical sideswipes have already taken the nation by storm. Seeing the real thing live and untamed is surely a great opportunity for any Latitude attendee. (Cabaret Arena)

New comedy troupe The Feral Pigeons bring their debut show: ‘The Sisters Return to The Isle of Queef!’ to Latitude. Wicked Queen Madame M’zelle vows to stamp out happiness on the magical Isle of Queef, leaving resident joy mongers, Evelyn & Prudence Petticoat, fleeing for their lives. Hijacked by conceptual dance forces, the pair are transported to the mean streets of London… With nothing but a song in their hearts and a low fat muffin in their pockets, the pair must learn to survive in a city where happiness is limited to an hour a day, and even eight year old pipsqueaks must fend for themselves. With no friends, no money, and a relationship on the brink, will the sisters ever return to the Isle of Queef? (Cabaret Arena)

Max and Ivan describe themselves as ‘comedians’ sculpting characters with fresh perspectives for familiar faces, and throwing them into situations with every last drop of ingenuity and humour wrung out of them. They are perpetrators of the monthly London ‘ROFFLE Club’ where sketch and character comedy lives and is treated very well by performers and audience alike. If you think you’re ready for a familiar concept re-wired and sent in your direction, then make yourself part of the crowd for this dynamic duo. (Cabaret Arena)

– THEATRE AT LATITUDE –

With the nation’s leading theatre companies all bringing exciting productions to the festival each year, Latitude’s Theatre programming has developed into a top performing arts festival. Renowned for its breadth and quality of programming Latitude has brought contemporary, physical, musical and classical theatre to brand new audiences, showcasing the very best productions as well as bespoke work made especially for Latitude. Added to the line-up are:

The Gate Theatre has a distinguished reputation that far exceeds its size. It is London’s only producing theatre dedicated to international work and this year Notting Hill’s small but ambitious theatre brings a new version of Sophocles’ tragic masterpiece ‘Electra’ to the Latitude landscape. Witness the horror and intrigue of this haunting production from award-winning playwright Nick Payne and director of the moment, Carrie Cracknell. When a young Electra’s father is murdered by her mother, her world changes irrevocably. 10 years on, bound by grief and unwilling to forgive, Electra surrenders to an all consuming desire for revenge that propels her toward a bloody and terrifying conclusion. Movement, live music and text blend in this bruising adaptation. (Outdoor Theatre Arena)

Trigger presents ‘CRUNCH’ written, directed and performed by Gary McNair. Supported by the National Theatre of Scotland & developed at Oran Mor and the Arches. Gary’s got a good feeling about you. He believes that you’ve got it in you to be a winner. He believes that you’ve got what it takes to complete his five-step programme. He believes that you can be liberated from the tyranny of money forever. Brothers and sisters – will you join him? Is it a lecture? Is it a test? Is he really serious? Come along, find out the answers, and test your beliefs. (Theatre Arena)

Acclaimed British beatboxer Shlomo takes us on a mad one-man musical mash-up using nothing but his mouth, a microphone and a loop sampler. With some help from the audience, this oral magician creates breathtakingly original soundscapes ranging from experimental vocal acrobatics to jaw-dropping one-man renditions of classic tunes we all love. His show, Mouthronica is an intense mix of storytelling and high energy genre-hopping voice-box-mashing human beatboxing, attempting to answer the question Shlomo always gets asked: “Dude how did you know you could do THAT?” (Theatre Arena)

Performed in the back of a vintage, yellow VW campervan called ‘Joni’, ‘Running On Air’ is the delightful award-winning show by comedian Laura Mugridge, presented by The Pleasance and performed for just five audience members at a time. Recreating the beauty of the great outdoors inside the campervan, Laura invites you on an intimate journey from Lands End to Edinburgh, sharing her experience of marriage, her love of the good life. With her own brand of quirky and charming comedy, Laura describes a remarkable journey that involves fell running, camping and a performance on a mountaintop in front of three kestrels. A joyful investigation into the beauty and complexity of domestic life. Created by Laura Mugridge and Tom Frankland, produced by Ric Watts and developed at Camden People’s Theatre. (Pandora’s Playground)
Theatre503 is like no other theatre in London, dedicated to fearless new writing from the boldest voices of today and the emerging voices of tomorrow. In a short space of time their work with new writers has gained wide attention and acclaim. They were the smallest theatre ever to win the Oliver Award for Best New play for ‘The Mountaintop’ in 2010, and won three Off West End Awards in February this year. (Theatre Arena)
For Latitude, Theatre503 present two productions:
‘CARROT’ is a new play by Ben Ockrent and directed by Nadia Latif. It’s Eleanor and Alex’s engagement party, and everyone is delighted to share their joy. Everyone except for Leanie. She’s not interested in other people’s pretenses of happiness. In fact, she’s not sure she believes in happiness at all. When her friends try to help her see sense, it turns everything they thought they knew about each other upside down. What they’ll discover when the dust settles is something none of them knew was there. It might not be happiness exactly, but it might be something better. Following the success of ‘Epic’ last year, Theatre503 returns, again with the most ambitious show of the festival. With a massive cast and using music, movement and image, ‘CARROT’ is an anarchic and exuberant celebration of everything that makes us happy, and a few things that don’t. (Theatre Arena)
‘PLAYlist’ curated by Derek Bond is back at this year’s festival with a brand-new take on last year’s theatre tent triumph. Inspired by the music of artists playing at Latitude, Theatre503 present nine new plays by the very best in new writing talent. ‘PLAYlist’ is the perfect theatrical mix-tape: some writers you know, some you don’t, but all writers you’ll end up loving. Playful, poignant, or a puzzle to be solved, the only rule is that each play is no longer than the piece of music that inspired it. A feast of fearless new writing in beautiful, bite-size chunks. (Theatre Arena)
Writer and Performer Tim Crouch presents ‘I, Malvolio’ – the fourth in a series of I, Shakespeare plays for young people. I, Malvolio is the story of Twelfth Night told through the eyes of Shakespeare’s most pent-up steward. Replete with shabby stockings, it is a charged, hilarious and often unsettling rant from a man who was “notoriously wronged”. A story of lost dignity, prudery, practical jokes and bullying, Malvolio draws his audience into the madness of Shakespeare’s play and makes it his own. (Theatre Arena)

– LITERARY ARENA –

Latitude celebrates the written word in all its glorious facets with its very own renowned library of literary excellence. Bringing together today’s most illustrious wordsmiths, the Literary Arena is a hub of storytelling, book discussions, lively debates and in-depth interviews. Top authors and special guests bring books to life and take audiences on fun-filled journeys to the far reaches of their imaginations.

Multi-award winning author, poet and panel judge for this year’s Manchester Fiction Prize; John Burnside will add to his appearance in the Poetry Arena by also reading from his new novel ‘ A Summer Of Drowning’ in the Literary Arena . This intoxicating book about a mother and daughter who move to the Arctic Circle follows his previous two critically acclaimed novels, ‘The Devil’s Footprints’ and ‘Glister’.

Esther Freud’s lineage is a distinguished one, which may account for why her first novel was semi-auto biographical. Entitled ‘Hideous Kinky’ it became a cult film starring Kate Winslet. Soon after her debut she was named one of Granta’s ’20 Best of Young British Novelists’. Taking her experience in the acting world – which has included being an alien in Doctor Who’s ‘Attack of the Cybermen’ at the age of 22 – she’s written her ninth novel ‘Lucky Break’, which follows the careers of a group of drama students from their first day at college and how they attempt to grab any sort of success.

Andrew Smith will be doing two readings; firstly audience members will be treated to ‘Moondust’ a Number 1 bestseller following the lives of the 12 American men who have walked on the moon. Smith will also be previewing his brand new novel provisionally entitled ‘Electric Gatsby: Josh Harris and the Great Millennial Heist’ before it is published early 2012. The book tells the story of Josh Harris and New York’s ‘Silicon Alley’ tech explosion during the second half of the 1990s. As New York’s first internet millionaire, Josh proceeded to spend his fortune on Pseudo.com, the world’s first internet TV portal, and a series of increasingly extravagant parties, happenings and art projects in and around Pseudo’s enormous SoHo HQ. The most notorious of these was a month-long Millennium party called Quiet, in which 100 people were invited to live for a month in a 6-story Broadway warehouse all streamed live to the web. Throughout, Josh’s aim was to illustrate what life would be like when we were all online and ‘living in public’ all of the time. The book is about Josh, and New York’s last big fling before 9/11, and the rise of the World Wide Web; how Josh saw that the internet would be about connection rather than commerce before anyone else.

Writer and academic Danny Dorling, has written heavy-hitting books as ‘So You Think You Know About Britain?’, ‘Injustice: Why Social Inequality Persists’, and ‘Bankrupt Britain: An Atlas of Social Change’. He’ll be asking the audience what they think is happening to the country, why unfairness prevails and are we bankrupt or not? He looks at other countries, back over the history of Britain, and ahead to what many people say they wish society to be. He also discusses some of the lesser know facts of life in Britain. Why do people, on average, move nearer to the sea the more they have their hearts broken? Where have all the good men gone and how are we going to cope with a country full up with geriatrics that allows few young people in any more? ‘So You Think You Know About Britain?’ is a fascinating insight into the current state of Britain that constantly surprises and overturns much received wisdom of today’s society. Danny will be speaking on a panel with Stuart Maconie and Karl James, reading from his book and answering questions in the Literary Arena.

Acclaimed novelist Kim Newman will be reading from ‘Anno Dracula’, an alternate history of Victorian London peppered with recognisable characters from history and fiction. On first publication in 1992, Kim Newman’s groundbreaking postmodern story was critically acclaimed and won numerous prizes, including the prestigious International Horror Guild Award for Best Novel. Now, due to huge demand created by today’s popular interest in vampires and alternative histories, this enduring Dracula classic is re-born for a new generation of readers. The brand-new paperback edition of this brilliantly imagined story contains unique bonus material, including a new afterword from Kim Newman, annotations, articles and alternate endings to the original novel. Elegantly combining horror, politics, mystery and romance, Anno Dracula is a rich and panoramic tale exploring the darkest depths of vampire-occupied England. It is 1888 and Queen Victoria has remarried, taking as her new consort Vlad Tepes, the Wallachian Prince infamously known as Count Dracula. Anno Dracula follows the story of vampire Geneviève Dieudonné and Charles Beauregard of the Diogenes Club as they strive to solve the mystery of the Ripper murders.

A former Britpop pin up as front woman of Sleeper, Louise Wener pretty quickly rejected all of that to become a successful novelist. She has written four novels to date and a memoir about her experiences in the music industry entitled ‘Different For Girls: My True-Life Adventures In Pop’ which was published last year. Taking in the heady exploits of a support band privy to all the backstage antics and on-road adventures of defining bands of the 90s, it’s an amusing and revealing portrait of the British music scene during the Cool Britannia era.

Radio DJ, journalist and author Stuart Maconie has published six well-received books since 1999. His northern tinged travel adventure, ‘Pies and Prejudice: In Search of the North’, was one of 2008’s best-selling paperbacks, while his music memoirs and his third travel book ‘Adventures On The High Teas: In Search of Middle England’ from 2009 was similarly well received. Of course his memoir about his time as a music journalist, ‘Cider With Roadies’, will always be the indicator of his style and way with an anecdote.

Simone Felice is probably best known in the music world as one third of The Felice Brothers although he is also part of the soulful quartet The Duke & The King – also playing on one of Latitude’s four music arenas. However, Simone is far more a storyteller than anything, whether through rhyme or prose. He published two short novels in 2004 and 2005. His latest, ‘Black Jesus’, is a tale of a blinded marine returning home to the nowhere town he grew up in and his encounter and love affair with a fleeing dancer, which pokes at the sores of the so-called American Dream.

Latitude is excited to present some special graphic novelists to the festival and the first of these to be announced are:

Writer and artist of comics, graphic novels and illustrations Bryan Talbot is best known as the creator of ‘The Adventures of Luther Arkwright’ and its sequel ‘Heart of Empire’ and will be expected to grace Suffolk’s Sunrise Coast this July. Bryan is currently working on a graphic novel ‘Dotter of her Father’s Eyes’ written by his wife, Mary Talbot. It is partly autobiographical, charting the relationship between Mary and her father, the Joycean scholar James S Atherton and partly biographical, dealing with the life of James Joyce’s daughter Lucia.

Writer and illustrator William Goldsmith will be presenting his stunning series of miniature masterpieces ‘Vignettes of Ystov’. Beautifully drawn, and written with a Chekhovian clarity and concision, it marks the arrival of one of the most inventive new talents in comics. Set in Ystov – a bleak but whimsical city, the pieces invite you to zoom in and out, through panoramas of industry and market squares, to witness the varied lives of its curious inhabitants – lives of absurdities, restraints and small triumphs. Goldsmith is a freelance illustrator based in Brighton, and recently graduated from The Glasgow School of Art. His work featured in D&AD’s New Blood exhibition in 2009.

The ‘Art of Pho’ is the first graphic novel to come from Julian Hanshaw, a long-time animation artist whose short story Sand Dunes and Sonic Booms won the Observer/Cape Graphic Short Story Prize in 2008. Drawing inspiration from the time he spent in Vietnam, Hanshaw has spun a tale that is part travelogue, part dream and part cookbook. The story centres around the national dish of Vietnam – the noodle soup pho. When Little Blue – having been dropped by a mysterious man with a red car and being told to count to 500 – finds himself in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s baffling, daunting capital, his salvation is his own mobile pho stand. Little Blue’s relationship with the city and its food brings an understanding to what it means to never want to return home and the fact that everyone goes away in the end.

Noted Guardian cartoonist Nick Hayes presents his first graphic novel ‘The Rime of the Modern Mariner’. Deep in a polluted city, an office worker escapes his office for a sandwich on a park bench. But his moment’s peace is shattered by a stranger – a seaman with a tale to tell… The Rime of the Modern Mariner is a recasting of Coleridge’s famous poem – now though, the fantastical voyage is one of environmental disaster. Stranded in the North Pacific Gyre – a vast, hypoxic maelstrom of plastic waste – the mariner comes face to face with the consequences of man’s excessive consumption – in the form of wrathful gods, petroleum slicks and tsunamis, ghostly apparitions, and the great endangered creatures of the deep. Crackling with moral force, humour and pure craftsmanship, The Rime of the Modern Mariner is a beautiful book which directly confronts the burning issues of our time.

Josie Curran is the author of three books about ‘Organised Fun’. Dragging the initiative out of thin air and coming up with glorious ways to pass the time, the book compiles such necessities as Blind Man’s Buff and Sardines with innovative new ways to entertain yourselves without spending a penny. In these hard times, these books are essential not only for entertainment but also for inspiration to utilise what we have, as opposed to what we think we need. Her latest book, ‘The Summer Handbook: How To Stretch Out Those Halcyon Days’ takes the format into new territory with general tips on how to get the most out of the British Summertime. Great outings, ideas for relaxation and time-wasting delights await in this brilliantly written and illustrated handbook.

Highly acclaimed novelist Andrew Miller’s debut novel ‘Ingenious Pain’ was awarded the James Tait Black Memorial Prize (for fiction) and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award with his third novel ‘Oxygen’ also shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Fiction and Whitbread Novel Award. Miller’s latest novel ‘Pure’, which will be hot off the press when he reads from it at Latitude; captures a young, provincial engineer Jean-Baptiste Baratte, a young, provincial engineer charged by the king with demolishing the city’s oldest cemetery. At first the Parisian sees this as a chance to clear the burden of history but before long, he begins to suspect that the destruction of the cemetery might be an introduction to his own.

– POETRY ARENA –

Satirical slams, poetic prose and comic verse are all celebrated at Latitude’s famous Poetry Arena. Found on the bank of the lake and larger than ever, a welcoming blanket of bean bags and cushions makes this an inviting place to while away the day; entertained by a wealth of leading poets (including past and present poet laureates) spoken word artists, comics, rappers and raconteurs alike.

Scottish writer John Burnside began his career with two poetry collections which both won Scottish Arts Council Book Awards in 1988 for ‘The Hoop’ and in 1991 for ‘Common Knowledge’. He is probably best known for ‘The Asylum Dance’, which was shortlisted for a Forward Poetry Prize for Best Collection and a T.S. Eliot Prize as well as winning the 2000 Whitbread Poetry Prize. He published his second memoir, ‘Waking Up In Toytown’ , last year. His haunting prose in titles like ’The Dumb House’ and ‘The Locust Room’ is as potent as his much garlanded poetry. For Latitude he will be reading from his new poetry collections, ‘Black Cat Bone’, and ‘Melissographia’ the latter of which is a collaborative project with artist Amy Shelton about the decline of the honey bee.

Led by BBC Poetry Slam Champion Dizraeli and featuring world female Beatbox Champion Bellatrix on the beatbox and double bass, Dizraeli and the Small Gods fuse viola, turntables, flute, close harmony singing, beatbox and double bass, steel string guitars and Dizraeli’s elastic rap vocals, to create a melodic, unashamedly heartfelt reinvention of hip-hop. Dizraeli and the Small Gods are a supernaturally gifted 7-piece band making hip-hop and folk shanties collide in ways you wouldn’t think possible. Forming in October 2009 they quickly established a reputation for impassioned live performances, and have since played some of England’s finest venues and festival stages and now head to Latitude. With a new album out this month, Dizraeli and The Small Gods will have plenty more to sing, rap and rhyme about.

Writer-in-residence at HMP Castle Huntly Tim Turnball has been reading his poetry, taking part in slams and performing his works since 1994. Winner of the inaugural Edinburgh Book Festival Slam, he has written several long-form poems and has published a number of collections, including ‘Caligula On Ice and Other Poems’ in 2009.

Rachel Pantechnicon is perhaps the only poet out there making motivational poems for both cats and people. She’s had her poetry broadcast on BBC Radio 1, 3 and 4, and after finally giving voice to her poems in 1997, she has won the hearts of a great many of her poetic peers. Whether it’s her quirky style, being better-dressed than the majority of her contemporaries or just her hilarious verses, Rachel Pantechnicon is a welcomed addition to the Poetry Arena.

The Captain’s Tower is a collection of poems from a variety of different authors which deal with the life and times of Bob Dylan. Upon the year of his 70th birthday, this collection aims to capture the cultural impact and the inspiration Dylan has given to the world of poetry with his amusing, wry, fierce and whimsical words. Sir Andrew Motion, Allen Ginsberg, Helen Kitson, Wendy Cope and many others all join this celebration of the genius musician.

Chris Redmond fuses his love of music and language, whether solo or with his band, performing broken jazz upon his vocal rhythms. His conversational style flows deceptively well and swims into song just as well as his spoken voice. Chris has performed at Shepherd’s Bush Empire and entertained crowds across a wide range of festivals. Performance is key for Chris and it’s through his experience as a touring musician, and his love of showmanship, that makes his shows so special.

Hannah Silva is an award winning writer and performer, described as ‘one of the most ambitious and entertaining poets in the country’ (The Times). Her distinctive style combines the physicality of theatre with vocal gymnastics and linguistic experiments. She composes speech, choreographs language and uses a loop pedal to create a unique form of theatrical spoken word. She performs her poetry internationally, recently toured the country with Apples & Snakes and has been featured on Radio 3’s ‘The Verb’. Her Latitude set includes an extract from ‘Opposition: A Little Political Speech Opera’. ‘Opposition’ premieres at the Edinburgh Fringe this summer.

Stand-up poet, armchair revolutionary and recumbent rocker, Elvis McGonagall is the sole resident of the Graceland Caravan Park somewhere in the middle of nowhere where he scribbles verse whilst drinking scotch, listening to Johnny Cash and throwing heavy objects at his portable telly. Elvis is the 2006 World Slam Champion, the compere of the notorious Blue Suede Sporran Club and appears regularly on BBC Radio 4 (‘Saturday Live’, the ‘Today Programme’, ‘Arthur Smith’s Balham Bash’ and others). He has appeared on BBC1’s “The One Show”. His jacket clashed with the lime green sofa.

As well as having a role in ska-punk-breakbeat duo SaltPeter – whose album ‘Hunger’s The Best Sauce’ was nominated for a Mercury Prize in 2007 – and working with dance group Coldcut, Salena Godden has had her poetry published in the likes of Dazed & Confused as well as many respected poetry publications. She’s host and co-producer of Soho’s weekly literary salon ‘The Book Club Boutique’ and her work has been praised for its grit and true-to-life feel.

Welsh poet and magician Nathan Penlington has played with the likes of John Cooper Clarke and Ricky Gervais, combining comedy, storytelling and magic for a show unlike any other. He’s poetry editor for ‘The Fix’, the UK’s only monthly comedy magazine, while his work and persona has been broadcast on BBC Radio 3 and 4 and Resonance FM. He’s most respected for his work at London’s weekly spoken word venue Shortfuse, as host and co-organiser where he has brought together poets, comics and musicians for a diverse bill of great entertainment.

Michelle Madsen is responsible for the creation and continual hosting of ‘Hammer and Tongue’, the UK’s foremost regular poetry slam evening. Regularly bringing together the biggest and most inspirational names in the poetry circuit, Michelle is a keystone in the scene. She’s no slouch herself either, keeping irregular rhymes aside about her own life, her living environment and whatever else takes her imagination by storm.

Manchester born Adam O’Riordan read English at Oxford University and in 2008 he became the youngest Poet-in-Residence at The Wordsworth Trust, the Centre for British Romanticism. His critically acclaimed first collection ‘In the Flesh’ was published by Chatto and Windus last summer.

2009 Eric Gregory Award winner Sam Riviere was also recently selected for the Faber New Poets Scheme. As co-editor of ‘Stop Sharpening Your Knives’, an anthology of poetry and spoken word, Sam has made a significant impact on the poetry scene with his choices. His own poetry is wry, thought-provoking and slightly surreal. Often taking a personal narrative, though not often the subject of his work, he keeps the listener or reader engaged throughout.

Hannah Walker is a performance poet and visual artist whose work has graced a number of festival stages. Hannah took her first solo show ‘This Is Just To Say’ on the road last year – an intimate audience piece set around a table and deals with her favourite British past time, apologies – which was well received. She was nominated for the Bridport Prize in 2009 .

Leicester’s most versatile B-Boy, John Berkavitch is an exciting addition to the Latitude Poetry Arena. One fifth of the Urbanian Quarter, Artist, Vandal, Poet, Writer, B-Boy, Rapper, Comic, Conceptual Thinker, Collaborator, Human-Beatbox and Surrealist, Berkavitch is a true talent. A veteran of the spoken word scene he toured with Apples & Snakes as part of the Temptation Tour in Autumn 2005, tearing up stages in venues all over the place. He is the 2007 UK Slam Champion, the 2007 Glastonbury Slam Champion and the 2006 Blackdrop Slam Champion up and down the country.

John Osborne’s first book, ‘Radio Head’, was published by Simon&Schuster in 2009 and broadcast as Radio 4’s Book of the Week. His second, ‘The Newsagent’s Window’ was described as ‘An utterly charming and compelling book,’ by Booktrust. He has had poetry published in The Guardian, The Big Issue and The Spectator and his first poetry pamphlet ‘What If Men Burst In Wearing Balaclavas?’ was published in 2010 by Nasty Little Press: “Yes, I like these poems. There is a warmth, as you’d expect with a balaclava in the title.” John Hegley.

Simon Mole hails from a land between spoken word, hip hop, and theatre. With an eye for the often overlooked in the everyday, his poetry is entertaining and accessible but remains rooted in a love of the craft of writing. After selling out the London run of his full length spoken word theatre show ‘Indiana Jones and The Extra Chair’, Simon is back at Latitude with some brand new shorter pieces, all packed full of his own distinctive mix of dense poetic imagery, comedic anecdotes, multi-syllabic rap flows, and emotive character-based narratives.

Brigitte Aphrodite is a touring solo musician who, of late, has been on tour with pop artist Kate Nash. With her sharp observations and rimshot delivery, her syllable-strewn lyricism is hilarious to follow. She released her ‘Dance With A Stranger’ EP and ‘Merry Kissmas’ single late last year (with profits going to charity), which gives further insight into her amusing and spot-on musical skills.

Sabrina Mahfouz is a Creative in Residence (Theatre/Poetry/Performance) at The Hospital Club. She’s won a Westminster Prize, an IdeasTap Group Award and a Made From Scratch New Writing Award for her theatre writing. She’s performed her poetry on BBC 1xtra, Radio 1 and at stages all over the country – including Latitude New Voices. She’s been developing her debut theatre/poetry solo show, ‘Dry Ice’, in New York with The Old Vic for the TS Eliot Old Vic New Voices Award. Lucky you, catch extracts of it first at Latitude!

Siddhartha Bose is a poet, playwright, and actor based in London. His first book of poetry, ‘Kalagora’, appeared last year (Penned in the Margins, 2010). He has also written, performed, and toured a one-man play of the same name. His work has appeared in City State: New London Poetry (Penned in the Margins, 2009), ‘Voice Recognition: 21 Poets for the 21st Century’ (Bloodaxe, 2009) and ‘The HarperCollins Book of Modern English Poetry by Indians’ (HarperCollins, 2011). He is developing a full-length play with WhyNotTheatre, Toronto, and was dubbed one of the ‘ten rising stars of British poetry’ by The Times.

Anna Freeman has been described as ‘one of the brightest lights of the poetry scene,’ and is a multiple slam-winning poet. She was delighted to become Latitude’s 2010 poetry slam champion. Her work is about the ludicrous nature of being human, and has been described as, ‘hilarious, with a thread of tender neurosis.’ She has performed in venues all over Britain and recently completed a slam tour of the West coast of America and Canada. Anna’s collaborative live literature project ‘Flash’, with Lucy English, Glenn Carmichael and Sara-Jane Arbury, is currently touring the literary festivals.

Surreal, sensual and decidedly left-field, Rosy Carrick’s eccentric style, dense rhyme structures and forceful imagery have won her international acclaim, as well as firmly cementing her place as one of the UK’s most unusual and exciting contemporary performance poets. Host of Brighton Hammer and Tongue, one of the UK’s largest spoken word & slam events, she also co-manages and comperes cult movie-themed club extravaganza Trailer Trash!, and runs workshops in writing and performance across the UK.

Two Microphones. Two voices. A Million Sounds. Beatbox and Rap. Two of the strongest hip-hop elements combine on stage to create an awe-inspiring live set. Raised in the city of Norwich, the duo consists of rapper ‘Soldier-A’ and beatboxer ‘Intensi T’. They cover a range of genres from hip-hop to R’n’B to Grime D’n’B & Dubstep and anything else the crowd want to hear!
Everything in their live set is strictly vocal. All of the music you hear is created by Intensi-T whilst the lyricism of Soldier-A flows clearly over the top, resulting in an awe inspiring live show.

– FILM & MUSIC ARENA –

One of the most diverse and cutting edge elements to Latitude’s repertoire, the Film & Music Arena offers audiences mesmerising displays, performances and viewings of fantastic cinema and music. Sonically and visually rich, the worlds of alternative film and music collide with a full programme of award winning screenings, documentaries, shorts, Q&A discussions and musical treats.

Reverend Billy & The Stop Shopping Gospel Choir is a division of The Church of Earthalujah, a New York City based radical performance community, with 50 performing members and a congregation in the thousands. They are wild anti-consumerist gospel shouters, earth loving urban activists who have worked with communities on four continents defending land, life and imagination from reckless development and the extractive imperatives of global capital. They employ multiple tactics and creative strategies, including cash register exorcisms, retail interventions, cell phone operas combined with grass roots organizing and media activism. They are entertainers and artists, performing regularly throughout the US and Europe, have produced two full length CDs, a television series (‘The Last Televangelist’) and are the subject of multiple documentaries, including ‘What Would Jesus Buy?’, a Christmas movie by Morgan Spurlock. Whether performing on the street, in the theatre, or for film, television or the web Reverend Billy and The Stop Shopping Gospel Choir create a joyous atmosphere that converts the everyday person into a believer inspired towards change.

Reverend Billy has published 2 books and with the Director of the Church, Savitri D, has just released another. They are frequent guests of news media appearing on The Today Show, CBS Evening News, Nightline, Fox News, Al-Jazeera, Glenn Beck, BBC 1 and numerous other local and regional affiliates and International print outlets. With dozens of original songs, a critically acclaimed stage show, a major motion picture and multiple media platforms make sure you don’t miss the multi award-winning Reverend Billy & The Stop Shopping Gospel Choir at Latitude who will leave you feeling inspired, motivated and taking responsibility for the world we live in.

– PANDORA’S PLAYGROUND –

A fantasyland of innocent pleasures and unbridled fun lies deep within the festival’s magical woods. A quirky corner of the Latitude site, here, anything goes. Side shows, games, interactive art, dance troupes, workshops and cutting edge theatre will keep you entertained all weekend long. Release your inner child and come play around at Latitude’s Pandora’s Playground.

Fans of the cult comic and TV series Modern Toss will be queuing up to visit the ‘Modern Toss Activity Centre’ where the ever inventive team behind sweary signwriter Mr. Tourette and the Drive By Abuser have come up with some interactive art-pieces guaranteed to lure you away from the snack tents. First up, a four- legged talking ‘Periodic Table of Swearing’ which you can sit at and operate like a demented organist as it pipes out swear words based on the chemical elements. When you’ve had enough of that get your face hand-drawn by Modern Toss’s Jon or Mick in a specially constructed ‘Portrait Booth’. A unique work of art you can carry around for the rest of your life, unless you have plastic surgery. There’s plenty more stuff on show in the Modern Toss Activity Tent so come along and get in the mood, yeah.

Join in with one of DanceEast’s classes on throughout the weekend! There will be everything from Yoga, Funky Street Dance to Egyptian Belly Dancing! Or why not try out the latest dance craze, Zumba! Dig out your legwarmers for our 80’s party class with DanceEast tutor Tom Hobden!

Kitsch, cool, and full of character, the Disco Shed will be pumping out the tunes and providing a truly unique party space for revellers of all ages. Conceived in a moment of garden party madness club promoters and long time festival goers, Peepshow Paddy and Aidan ‘Count’ Skylarkin took inspiration from their actual shed, in which they’d enjoyed one too many parties for their neighbours liking, and set about converting an ordinary 8 x 6 ft Billy O garden shed into the club night ever. By day, chill out and enjoy the good–time garden party vibe, with classic garden games, and Jane Fonda workouts. Then dance the night away to top quality DJ sets, with a full light show and live visuals on the shed’s giant rooftop screen.

Leading live artist Jenny Edbrooke brings ‘Smalls’ to Latitude’s Pandora’s Playground. Funny, sad, moving and at times challenging, Smalls is an intimate performance that provides an enchanting and amusing insight into the complex world of undergarments. Audiences are invited to peek up Edbrooke’s voluminous skirt made entirely of bras and knickers to explore its hidden gems and saucy secrets. Mixing sound installation with live performance, Edbrooke takes you on a creative journey that exposes the delights and indiscretions of our underwear.

– TICKET INFORMATION –

Weekend tickets £170.00 including VAT, subject to booking fee
Day tickets Fri, Sat, Sun £70.00 including VAT, subject to booking fee
Child ticket (5-12 years) £5.00 including VAT, subject to booking fee
Campervan Permit £30.00
Weekend tickets prices include car parking and camping
Day tickets include car parking only

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