Viva Brighton Issue #63 May 2018


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#63. MAY 2018




Viva Brighton is based at:

Brighton Junction,

1a Isetta Square, BN1 4GQ.

For advertising enquiries call:

01273 810 296.

Other enquiries call:

01273 810 259.

Every care has been taken to

ensure the accuracy of our content.

We cannot be held responsible for

any omissions, errors or alterations.

Around this time of the year, I’m struck by a

peculiar malady. The first symptoms come on

in early February with an impatient longing

to know what is coming. This develops into

choice-overload anxiety and the attendant

fear of missing out and, ultimately, around

mid-April, frenzied anticipation sets in.

I’ve self-diagnosed a bad case of festival fever

and I doubt I’m the only sufferer. With so

much happening in town this month (we’ve

counted at least five festivals, but then

there’s Charleston just down the road, too),

I’m opting for immersion therapy: booking

myself out every night in May and plunging

up to the eyeballs in art.

It’s a cliché to say that Brighton is an

abundantly creative city: there’s art in the

streets on any day of the year. It’s just that

in May, that gets turned up to eleven. We’ve

been poring over the brochures for months

now and you’ll have to excuse us this one

indulgent issue where just about every page

somehow loops back to something you can

see or do. It would be churlish not to.

In these pages are just a few of our

suggestions, but what we really recommend

is that you get out and about this month.

Whatever your festival strategy, you’re bound

to see something extraordinary, challenging

or entertaining. And don’t worry if you feel

daunted. We can all have a long lie down

under a cold flannel in June.





EDITOR: Lizzie Lower

DEPUTY EDITOR: Rebecca Cunningham

SUB EDITOR: Alex Leith

ART DIRECTOR: Katie Moorman


ADVERTISING: Hilary Maguire,

Sarah Jane Lewis



CONTRIBUTORS: Alexandra Loske, Amy Holtz, Andrew Darling, Ben Bailey,

Chloë King, Chris Riddell, Emma Chaplin, Hugh Finzel, JJ Waller, Jacqui Bealing,

Jay Collins, Joda, Joe Decie, John Helmer, John O’Donoghue, Lizzie Enfield,

Mark Greco, Martin Skelton, Michael Blencowe and Nione Meakin

PUBLISHER: Becky Ramsden

Please recycle your Viva (or keep us forever).


beautifully imperfect since 2009








Bits & Bobs.

10-25. Is that a David Shrigley on the

cover? Why yes, it is. Inside the mag,

the Festival guest director and Brighton

resident gives us the lowdown on his

busy May. Plus: Alexandra Loske finally

gets inside a forgotten studio; BOAT

dreamer, the late Adrian Bunting, on

the buses; Joe Decie wanders round

the city in a pair of art-filtered glasses;

a Brighton charity promotes the music

of refugees; the Groutfiti artist strikes

again; we have a pint of ‘meaty’ chips at

The Caroline of Brunswick, and Viva

Brighton does a flit across the Thailand-

Laos border. And plenty more besides.

My Brighton.

26-27. Artists Open Houses festival

director Judy Stevens on the world’s

original art-snoopers’ paradise.




29-35. Tony Tree snaps life on the steps of

Brighton Unitarian Church in New Road.


37-41. Lizzie Enfield raps on the art of

abandoned trousers; John Helmer keeps a

lycra-clad lid on a Life on Mars pub, and

will it ever be warm enough for Amy Holtz?

Photo by Victor Frankowski

Alma Haser

On this month.

42-57. Ben Bailey’s picks from The Great

Escape (from in town and out); Blake

Morrison at the Charleston Festival; a

beginner’s guide to being more Beyoncé;

The Lives They Left Behind at BOAT;

transgender traveller Adam at the Theatre

....7 ....



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Royal; Baba Brinkman’s Rap Guide to

Climate Change; Mortified at The Warren;

Brighton Film Quartet’s Soundscape

at Spiegeltent, and Ezra Furman at

Brighton Dome.



59-71. Who will be best-in-show at

Artists Open Houses? Plus the art of the

everyday at the Museum of Ordinary

People; Morag Myerscough’s Belonging,

and a round-up of (just a tiny fraction of)

what’s on, art-wise, this month.

The way we work.

73-77. All dressed up with nowhere to

go… five Fringe performers go about

their daily business in their festival finery.

Photo by Adam Bronkhorst,


79-83. Not one but two performances

revolving around food, and The Rummikub

Curry Club is a thing.


85-97. We get out and about: a yoga

sanctuary in a converted church; the

festival on the fringes of the city; a

Photo by Adam Bronkhorst,



two-wheeled tour of Brighton’s street art

with REQ, and an art-toting plinth in

Hove. Plus Lewes composer Ed Hughes,

orchestrating the Sussex landscape, and

long live lichen! The original street

artists, ready to invade Mars.

Inside left.

99. The Brighton Festival Chorus, 1970.

....9 ....



Photo by Victor Frankowski

Over the years we’ve been

privileged to feature the

work of some incredible

local talent on our covers.

This month we’re especially

excited to have been given

this illustration, unmistakably

the work of Turner Prizenominated

artist David

Shrigley, to introduce our

festival issue.

Kemptown resident David is,

of course, the Guest Director

for this year’s Brighton

Festival (5th – 27th May).

“I was quite surprised to be

asked,” he tells us. “I felt like

I was in rather prestigious

company.” He has curated

a selection of events for the

Festival, spanning visual

arts, music and literature.

“I had the opportunity to

make a performance piece

[Problem in Brighton, at The

Old Market, 10th – 12th

May] which is something

I’ve always really wanted to

do. I’ve done musical things

© David Shrigley

before, in terms of writing

lyrics, but I haven’t really

directed anything. I’ve also

made the musical instruments

– there are seven electric

guitars that I’ve designed and

some other instruments as

well – so it’s going to be quite

a curious piece, but hopefully

it’ll be a lot of fun.”

Another of David’s events,

Life Model II (until 28th May),

has seen Fabrica transformed

into a life-drawing classroom,

centred around a nine-foottall

female mannequin. “She’s

quite weirdly proportioned,”

he explains, “which, as a

person who studied life

drawing at art college and

wasn’t very good at it, is sort




© David Shrigley

Still from A Shit Odyssey

of my revenge, because even

if you are good at life drawing

the finished piece is still going

to look badly proportioned.

The joy of the exhibition is

that it encourages people

to make drawings, and not

necessarily feel that they have

to be good at drawing. It’s for


The Festival has always been

an opportunity to open up the

arts to audiences who might

not usually take part, and to

inspire young people to follow

their creative passions. David

talks about the importance

of those early formative

experiences in his own life:

“My family was not interested

in the arts at all,” he says. “I

don’t think I even knew there

was such a career as being an

artist, but I remember going to

see an exhibition at what was

the Tate Gallery - I guess I was

about 14. It was Jean Tinguely,

a Swiss kinetic sculptor, and it

was a really amazing show of

all these machines that he’d

made, which made sounds and

drawings, and for me that was

a real eye-opener. I wanted

to do something like that and

I wanted to make something

like that. It was a real moment

at which I decided, I was

probably never going to be a

professional footballer, I was

going to be an artist.”

“I think my parents were

probably quite disappointed

that I wanted to go to art

school,” he says. “I’m from a

fairly modest background, so

they always felt that working

hard and having a career and

making a living was the most

important thing, and they

couldn’t see how I could

do that as an artist. To

be fair to them, it

never really


© David Shrigley

to me that I could make a

living either. It turned out

alright in the end.”

So what advice does he have

for this year’s graduating

artists? “Do what you want to

do. A lot of people will tell you

that you shouldn’t pursue this,

but if you’re an artist, whether

you’re a musician or a writer

or a filmmaker, you’ve just

got to do it, and eventually,

somehow, you’ll find a way

of making a living out of it.”

Rebecca Cunningham


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David Elphick and his fiancé Amy took this shot a month into their

travels through South East Asia at the Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge

border crossing. They’ll be gone until June, missing all of this month’s

festivities, so his sister slipped a copy into his case as a reminder of home.

David asked us to say hi to all their friends, and to remind his sister not

to wreck their place while they’re away. Keep taking us with you and keep

spreading the word. Send your pictures to





ROUTE 12, 12A

Some people burn brighter (and faster) than

others. This was certainly true of Adrian Bunting: a

playwright, director, producer, construction manager,

inventor and compère.

Born in Woolwich in 1966, Adrian initially planned

to study Law in Manchester but quickly switched

to an MSc in Building at Brighton Polytechnic,

where he threw himself into the local arts scene,

regularly appearing with the Festival Shakespeare

Company, founding the Upstairs Theatre Company

and becoming master of ceremonies at the

legendary Zincbar Cabaret at the Basement (the

original, seedier version). It was described as ‘a

gloriously unpredictable crucible into which both

gold and rubbish were thrown’. More theatrical

experimentation was to follow. Not least ‘the

World’s Smallest Theatre’ in which Adrian – and

actress Clea Smith – performed to a one-person

audience in a


wooden box,

and the much

acclaimed Kemble’s

Riot, in which he cast the audience as rioters.

Combining all of his talents, he was drawing up

plans for an open-air theatre in the defunct bowling

green in Dyke Road Park when he was diagnosed

with pancreatic cancer in April 2013. Irrepressible

to the end, he spent his last weeks sharing his

plans with friends, urging them to see the project

through to completion, and leaving his life savings

to kickstart the project. He died just four weeks later.

The brilliant BOAT, which opened in May 2015, is

a fitting tribute to his memory (although he might

have been disappointed with the lack of rioting in the


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In 2012 I curated my first

exhibition at Brighton

Museum, a display of

around 50 works by the

artist Robert Charles

Goff (1837-1922), whose

etchings and paintings

earned him an international

reputation during his

lifetime. A fervent traveller,

he found subjects for

his art in Italy, Egypt,

Japan, Holland and

Switzerland, but he had

a special connection with

England’s south coast.

He seems to have been

particularly drawn to

Sussex throughout his life

and kept a place in Hove

for the best part of 33

years. His love of Brighton & Hove is reflected

in some of his finest and most popular etchings,

such as The Destruction of the Chain Pier (1896)

and The Metropole Hotel (c1895). He painted and

etched views of the sea, shorelines and waterways

in every phase of his career, wherever he worked

and lived. In one dramatic etching, The South

Cone (c1896) Goff depicts waves crashing

precariously around the end of the West Pier.

Goff moved into a large house on the east side of

Adelaide Crescent in or around 1889. He left the

house in 1903 to move to Italy with his second

wife Clarissa, but kept a studio, complete with a

printing press, in Holland Road until his death in

1922. ‘Wick Studio’ was purpose-built for him in

1895, with more living and working space added

Image courtesy of Alexandra Loske

in 1907. It backed onto his

home in Adelaide Crescent

and was connected to it via

some steps which are still

there today.

Even after he left to live

in Italy, Goff remained

involved with the Brighton

& Hove art scene by

exhibiting his work here

and as a member of the

Brighton Fine Arts Sub-

Committee. It seems that

he got on very well with

Henry Roberts, Chief

Librarian and Curator

of Brighton Museum.

Shortly after Goff’s death

in Switzerland in 1922,

memorial exhibitions were

held at Brighton Museum,

Hove Public Library, and the Fine Art Society in

London. Brighton & Hove Museums acquired

the entire contents of this studio, a collection

which gives a remarkable insight into the work

and methods of an etcher in the late 19th and

early 20th century.

This image shows an etching from 1912 of

Wick Studio and Holland Road. It is a lovingly

composed view of a place that was clearly very

important to him. The mother and child in the

foreground may be significant: Goff’s first wife

Beatrice and their young son Francis died a few

years after they had moved to Hove. Goff also

included a similar view of his studio in miniature

as part of a large index plate for a catalogue of his

work in 1898.




Image courtesy of Alexandra Loske

I once managed to visit Goff’s large house in

Adelaide Crescent (converted into separate

apartments after he left), and found a couple

of large Moorish mirrors in the hall which he

probably brought back from his travels to North

Africa. As for Wick Studio, it, too, survives in

the now-much-changed Holland Road. Until

recently I thought that no trace of Goff remained

there, but a few weeks ago I was contacted by

Kim and Clive Bolton, who live in the house,

now 4 Holland Road. They invited me to their

home and were keen to find out more about Goff.

It was a fascinating visit, as you can clearly see

the original layout of a generous artist’s studio,

complete with a gallery. In the loft there is even

still an original light pendant for the studio.

Kim and Clive have also discovered the original

designs for Wick Studio at The Keep Archives. It

was very moving to imagine the many hundreds

of etchings and watercolours by Goff that are

now in the collection of Brighton Museum being

created in this space. We are now working jointly

on applying for a Blue Plaque for Goff on his

beloved studio in Holland Road.

Alexandra Loske, Curator and Art Historian

Image courtesy of Royal Pavilion & Brighton Museums



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We started around 2008. I’d been

noticing a lot of negative press

towards refugees and migrants. I

remember seeing a story on Channel

4 News one day about a family that

had been attacked – it was terrible –

and there was a clip of this guy getting

onto a bus with this accordion

on his back. That gave me a thought: maybe we could

do something positive to showcase the music and

culture that people bring when they come here.

We do recordings, gigs, and fundraising for musicians

from refugee and migrant backgrounds.

We work as a booking agent as well. At first, if I saw

someone in the street with an instrument I would

just go up and chat to them and tell them about

what we do. There’s a great European Romany band

called Gypsy Stars that I saw busking in Brighton

maybe eight years ago, and I went up to them and

we had a beer and a chat.

We’ve been doing gigs with

them ever since.

We were at Glyndebourne

with a couple of Syrian

musicians recently. There

were all these different people

– filmmakers and writers

and opera singers – all collaborating together. We

get a lot of generic emails from people asking for

‘some refugees’ – it’s very dehumanising. But when

we arrived at Glyndebourne it was like they weren’t

refugees, they were just good musicians who had

something interesting and valid to contribute.

Rebecca Cunningham spoke to Phillip Minns

Day & Night EP by Syrian musicians Jamal and Alaa is

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An unmissable part of Brighton’s

festival season – over four weekends

from 5-28 May, artists open their

doors offering work from over 1,000

artists, exhibiting in 200 venues

across the city, out to Rottingdean,

along the coast to South Heighton

and over The Downs to Ditchling.

Illustration: Melodie Stacey




Happy May everyone.

Warmth (hopefully), first

swim in the sea, tons of

Fringe and Festival events to

go to and an overwhelming

amount of art on the streets,

on walls, in hairstyles, being

worn, at exhibitions, by street

performers and more.

So, given that there is plenty

of that, we’re not staying on

theme this month. Instead,

we are highlighting a magazine

that mirrors the great

big, fat gorgeousness that is

Festival month in Brighton.

Exhibition is huge. I mean,

by magazine-size standards, it’s really, really big. If

you come and buy it don’t come when it’s raining

because we don’t have a bag big enough to keep it

dry and you probably don’t either.

It’s been interesting watching people look through

the new issue. All you can hear is people saying

‘Oh wow!’ or ‘It’s gorgeous’ or, of course, ‘A bit

big, isn’t it?’

Exhibition uses the large

format so, so well. It’s a

photographic, documentary,

themed magazine (the

theme this month is ‘Family’)

with words and articles

in English and French. It’s

from Paris and comes out

twice a year.

If you like this sort of

thing, it will simply blow

you away. The quality of

the paper is very high, the

reproduction amazing and

the quality of the images is,

at times, sensationally good.

At first glance, the images

are so overwhelmingly stunning that you’ll skip

the words. Don’t. Exhibition contains some really

good reflective writing and interviews around the

family theme.

You’ll like it. We promise you. Some of you will

like it as much as we do. But you’ll definitely like

it. This month, enjoy the Festival and a great exhibition

(or two). Martin Skelton, MagazineBrighton


This month we’re taking the advice on the lavatory

wall and will be getting out and agrout on the city

streets. With rock balancers, backward-facing buses and

semi-intelligent talking seesaws in town, who knows

what we’ll come across.

But where is this toilet tour guide?

Last month’s answer: Presuming Ed


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Our theme this month – art in the streets – particularly chimed with JJ

Waller, who tells us that sometimes he views the streets as one huge film

set. “When the light, the location and the human presence come together

with a dramatic theatricality,” he says, “I find that the gripping storytelling

potential of the ‘everyday’ can make for compelling street art.”




Painting by Jay Collins


I walk into the Caroline of Brunswick straight after

football practice in my red Lewes FC Vets hoodie,

matching tracksuit bottoms, and trainers, worried that

I’ll look weird. The COB, of course, is home to Brighton’s

oddball tribes – the death metallers, the punks, the

skateboard kids, the elfworld nerds.

Nobody bats an eyelid. The first thing I notice – you

can’t but – is the giant three-headed papier-mache

Cerberus above the bar. ‘TWO PINTS OF STAR’

I get across to the barmaid, above whatever genre of

screaming rock it is that they have on. And a burger.’

Then I have a pleasant chat with a clearly tanked up but

extremely pleasant young man on a stool about the fact

that we’re both with Lloyds Bank.

I’m pointed out that there’s a menu, and I choose a classic

burger with ‘meaty’ chips. My mate Tommy Tickle

is doing the kitchen, and I know from what he’s told me

that ‘meaty’ means that – just like the old days – they’re

cooked in lard.

Last year the Caroline – which, thanks to a space

upstairs, doubles up as a comedy/live music venue,

much loved by the likes of Zoe Lyons and Seann Walsh

– was under threat because Punch wanted to renew the

landlord Cliff’s licence and everyone was worried that

it would become another chain pub and boot out all

the oddballs. There was a campaign – Caroline Lucas

got involved and thousands signed a petition – and the

place was saved.

It’s an old pub, listed in the directories since 1832. Said

directories indicate that it used to be called The Brunswick

Arms, which it remained until the nineties, when

it was given the moniker ‘The Leek and Winkle’, which

you might expect Martin Amis to call a Blair/Blur-era

pub in one of his novels. It became The Caroline of

Brunswick in November 2006, when it was reopened

– after a big refurb – by Cliff, a man, I’m told, with

interesting pinky-purple hair.

I take the drinks into the garden (an unexpected

surprise) and pretty soon Tickle arrives with the food.

I don’t doubt it’s the best feed you can get in town for

a fiver: the burger is plump and clearly home-crafted,

and the chips are to die for, a Proustian path to the

past. Needless to say – it’s that sort of place – we stay

till we’re booted out. If you want three-word version

of this review: ‘Great barmy boozer’. And I didn’t even

mention the pool table. Alex Leith


Photo by Adam Bronkhorst,




MYbrighton: Judy Stevens

Artists Open Houses director

Are you local? No. I’m from London. I moved

to Brighton in 1992. In my previous life I was an

illustrator and a printmaker (as I still am, when I

have the time!) and it got to the point where you

didn’t need to live in London. Everything was

going online and it was easy to work from home.

Why did you choose Brighton? To be honest,

I really fancied going somewhere like Barcelona

and my partner Chris really fancied Glasgow, so

we chose Brighton. I haven’t missed London for

a moment.

How did you get involved with Artists Open

Houses? The roots of it were in the 70s when

a group of local artists opened their studios.

Then, 37 years ago, Ned Hoskins had the idea of

opening his house instead of his studio as part of

the Brighton Festival. Soon more houses opened

in Fiveways and more trails followed. The Artists

Open Houses became part of the Fringe with

each area also creating their own individual maps.

By this time we had moved to Brighton and I was

already participating in the Open Houses. Chris

is a graphic designer, so we had the idea of creating

a brochure that included all of the houses -

150 at that time - and suddenly we had a festival.

How has it changed over the years? It’s always

been a really important showcase for established

artists and makers - the quality of work is amazing

- but now there are an increasing number

of younger, emerging artists working in new

ways, not necessarily making work to sell. It’s an

opportunity to put their work in front of gallery

owners and a massive public audience. There are

also quite a few community venues showing work

by excluded and outsider artists; artists who are

marginalised maybe through learning difficulties,

mental health, drug or alcohol issues, or others

who have experienced homelessness. As far as

we know it’s the biggest festival of its kind in the

country. We have 200 venues with an average of

8-10 artists in each. There are different things for

different audiences and in any one trail you might

experience them all. That’s a big part of it, the

serendipity of not knowing what the next house

will be.

Do you still open your house? Not anymore,

we can’t. It’s quite disruptive turning your house

upside down and just at that moment when

you’ve got to be preparing, we’re busy getting

the brochures out. We want to be able to visit

as many of the houses as possible, to see what

everyone is doing.

Aside from the Artists Open Houses, what do

you like most about Brighton? It’s a really good

size. You can get to know it well but there’s always

a new bit to discover and so it never gets boring.

You can get to grips with it.

What don’t you like about it? Apart from it not

actually being Barcelona… I occasionally hanker

after being in the countryside and having a studio

where I can get on with printmaking without

having to worry about anything else.

Where’s your favourite place in the city? We

live just up from the station, so I have the Battle

of Trafalgar (the best pub in Brighton), the Sussex

Yeoman (the best place to eat) and my gym right

there, so I very rarely have to go anywhere else.

Where would you live if you didn’t live here?

I quite like Lewes, or Lisbon. With everything

that’s going in the UK at the moment, the rest of

Europe does seem very attractive.

Interview by Lizzie Lower






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Tony Tree

Snaps on the steps

I was invited by the

Unitarian Church on

New Road to take some

photographs as part of the

project to conserve and repair

the historic portico. We

wanted to cover the builder’s

hoardings in photographs that

reflect the life of the church.

I started in 2016 and visited

all through last year. I began

photographing the ceremonies

and the people who use the

church, but we quickly decided

to take it out into the street

too. The portico is a natural

auditorium, complete with

proscenium arch.

I’ve photographed all sorts of things on the

steps: one-legged seagulls, buskers, rough sleepers,

performances in the Fringe, marriages, one

wedding with four people and a couple of dogs…

it’s the very essence of the city. If it’s happening in

Brighton it’s happening on New Road, from its

rough edges to the polished.

The street reflects the church and what

happens in the church reflects the street.

They suit each other. The eclectic stuff that

happens in that church is extraordinary but

hidden by those great red doors. There’s African

drummers, baby yoga, meditation classes, tango

nights, gigs, Brighton & Hove Gay Men’s Chorus

and, on Friday afternoons, there are the most

extraordinary concerts with first-class musicians.

I’ve photographed all the different instruments

over the year and have built up an entire orchestra.

I remember New Road from way back. My

early days were spent at my gran’s house in

Upper Gardner Street and my first school was

the Central School, now the

site of Carluccio’s. My father

was an antiques dealer and

we regularly visited an art

dealer where Pinocchio’s is

now, and when I worked as a

photographer at The Argus, the

pubs there were a big part of

our lives. One of my earliest

memories is winning the baby

show in the Pavilion Gardens

in 1948. I was three!

It’s always been a

characterful street. It

was originally called The

Promenade and it is a

promenade. There are posers,

flâneurs, people drinking

outside the pubs… It’s just the most wonderful

thoroughfare. It was a gift of a job for me. I was

always walking though there, not necessarily every

day, but an awful lot. I can’t stop doing it now. I

was walking past the Theatre Royal the other day

and there was a beautiful image of a guy playing

cello in the colonnade. I don’t think the project

will ever end for me, but it’s on pause for now.

The city will miss the portico whilst the work

is completed. It’s a very social space. The world

sits there to have its lunch and, when you do,

people come to talk to you. It’s an engaging space,

an amazing building and a really nice community

that use it. The church doesn’t mind that the steps

are so communal, they just put a sign outside

saying; ‘No busking please. Service in progress.’

As told to Lizzie Lower

The renovations, funded by the Heritage Lottery

Fund, are expected to be completed by November.

Tony’s photos will be displayed both inside and

outside the church for the duration of the project.

Photo by Adam Bronkhorst,




Photos © Tony Tree




Photos © Tony Tree



Sunday 5th August, 1.30pm-Late






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Photos © Tony Tree




Photos © Tony Tree




Photos © Tony Tree


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Lizzie Enfield

Notes from North Village

A colleague recently returned from a press trip to

Hamburg, where his tour guide left a trail of small

creatures made with Hama beads. “Street art,” he

informed my colleague, placing various pocketsized

rabbits, cats and birds in public places. My

colleague was dubious but I rather liked the idea.

I once saw a comedian advocating a whole new

pointless way of living: “see if you can get oranges

to rhyme with sausages,” he cajoled, rousing the

audience by asking them to chant lines ending

with both words and the encouraging “If you try

hard enough, you might find sausages and oranges

do rhyme.”

They never did. But we had fun trying.

The same comic said he often left eggs in people’s

gardens, as talking points.

“Imagine Florence and Alfred at number 73

haven’t actually spoken to each other for years.

Then, Flo draws the curtains one morning and

tells Fred to get out of bed and look at this.”

He mimed Fred going to his wife, who he no

longer had anything left to say to.

“What is it?”

“An egg!”

Suddenly they are chatting away over breakfast.

“How did it get there? Who left it? Why? Is it


A few months ago I woke to see a woman planting

a series of small crosses at apparently random

intervals across the grass in the local park.

I toyed with the idea that it was some sort of

memorial, the fallen of Blaker’s Park during the

war perhaps? Or the #MeToo women of the North

Village? Or perhaps an art installation?

Turned out she was highlighting the amount of

dog’s mess in the park. But still, it did look pretty.

And now there’s a new installation that’s being

talked about almost as much as if it were a Banksy:

a pair of maroon corduroy flares, abandoned on

the footbridge crossing the railway line.

Suddenly all the neighbors are chatting about


“Have you seen the trousers on the railway


“What size are they?”

“Best place for them.”

“If there was a burgundy tank top with them, then

they’re mine.”

“Marooned!” Boom boom.

And then mysteriously, the trousers moved from

the south to the north side of the bridge where

they were arranged, rather than dumped: slung

over the railings in a suggestive way, if maroon

corduroy flares can ever really be considered


“Perhaps they’re part of the festival?” suggested

someone standing at the foot of the bridge where

there’s a little stenciled cat – like an actual Banksy.

“More likely the owner was stripped and arrested

by the fashion police.” This, from one of the ubercool

teens in the street.

I told her that I used to have a very similar pair

myself in the 70s.

She replied, coolly: “A lot of things happened in

the 70s that society no longer condones.”

This seems like a good title, for a street art exhibit.

Illustration by Joda (@joda_art)




John Helmer


Illustration by Chris Riddell

The carpet is swirly, the walls half-timbered.

The ceiling has a honeycomb-coloured patina

that dates the interior as pre-smoking-ban;

pre-the relentless tide of gastrofication that

has swept through pretty much every pub in

Brighton. You have to come deep into the sticks

for this. There is a plate rail, horse brasses. An

outside gents with a leaky roof. It is the pub

that time forgot, and penetrating its portals our

exposed middle-class knees go weak.

I’m out for a spin with some MAMiL friends

(Middle-Aged Men in Lycra), one of whom

pulls out his phone and asks the landlady if

it’s OK to take a photograph of the hallowed


“All right, but I’ll have to keep me mouth shut,”

she says, assuming he’ll want her in it; “me

plate is off at the dentist being fixed—I’ll never

eat a Double Decker straight out of the fridge


Priceless. We order drinks and huddle in

the back bar, admiring the wall display, an

inexplicable juxtaposition of antique guns and

Dinky cars.

A local couple come in, nod to us and strike up

conversation. We mentally brace. Will the talk

turn to Brexit? Please God don’t let the talk

turn to Brexit. But all they want to talk about is


“I was on that coast road for twenty minutes.

They had some show or something going

on. And then up by the Pavilion there was

something causing a jam. And other stuff near

the Town Hall… they ought to think about

it before they book these things all at once,

oughtn’t they..?”

“Nice guy,” I say to Simon later as we saddle up,

“but it’s as if he doesn’t get how a festival works.

Like the council just made this terrible series of

scheduling errors - ‘d’oh how did we do that?’ -

you imagine them whacking their foreheads in

disbelief - ‘booked a whole year’s-worth of arts

events in one month! What were we thinking!

The traffic problems! If only we’d spaced the

shows out through the year...’”

We resume our ride full of nostalgic longing

for the ideal, the platonic pub; the pub of lost

content that we have found. We know this place

is unique. To call it a waystation on our ride

would be to traduce an itinerary that always

centred on it, right from the very beginning.

The point of the whole day, really, was to visit


But I’m not going to tell you its name, or where

it is. If I did you might go there, and like it (on

Facebook, even) and tell your friends… and

within six months the floors would be sanded,

the walls stripped, and they’d be serving linecaught,

beer-battered cod with a minted pea jus

and thrice-cooked hand-cut chips in a stupid

wire basket and it would all be over.


In the words of the great Frankie Valli, let’s hang

on to what we’ve got.


We also run

regular fused

glass workshops -

dates for 2018

now available.



Amy Holtz

The truth is, I’m a Minnesotan

It’s official – we can stop

being so angry now, because

apparently it’s spring. Cats,

even the feral ones, are being

stroked in the street. Babies

look cuter. Faces emerge

tentatively from tightened

hoods with just a flicker of

an upturned lip. The runners

are out, making the rest of

us look bad. We are spring,

spring is us.

Stoicism is one of this

country’s most admirable qualities and so I’m

sitting outside a drinking establishment with a

friend, practising fortitude, and shivering. Let’s

be honest, it’s a stupid thing to do and everyone

knows it, but we’re all desperate to pretend it’s

not that cold out. Two girls walk past in what

my grandma used to purchase in pastel bulk

and call ‘pedal-pushers’ (not sure why) and

I have a chuckle to myself while shaking out

my numb fingers. Their ankles are a mosaic

of goosebumps and for a second, one of them

breaks the ice of this absurdity, absently tugging

up the useless elastic of her retro gym socks.

It’s kinda beautiful, this suffering. But then a

man saunters past, leans against the stoplight,

waiting for the green guy. He’s wearing shorts

and Birkenstocks and walking a chihuahua (who

is also shivering).

“I can’t wait till May, when it’s warm.” My friend

leans back against the pub as I stare at her,


“Where on earth have you been May-ing?


Because, honestly, I can’t remember a Great

Escape without wet clothes, every underground

venue in Brighton smelling like a poodle

drenched in stale Red Stripe

seasoned with patchouli. Or

gamely attempting to be the

first person to rush the mud

to those exposed lawn chairs

at the Spiegeltent, playing our

collective favourite game of

looking smug while bracing

the merciless, icy whip of

20mph winds. The thing

that really gets me, though,

is that outdoor beers, much

anticipated all winter, are

somehow always lukewarm, despite the arctic

temperatures. It’s a special knack we seem to

have here in Brighton, like juggling, or pebblewalking.

“Naw, seriously. It’s always like mega-hot in


This is a truly astounding claim.

“No, it’s really not. You must be in some sort

of denial because for as long as I’ve been here,

a massive dark cloud monster with a soggy

bottom sits on top of Brighton for the duration

of May and then gets up to do something else

as soon as June rolls around. But by then all

the fun stuff’s been packed away – the crazy

Fringe shows with amateur magicians in cattle

boxes, the over excited pre-pubescents with

fireworks, the over excited, drunk adults with

fireworks, the circus, the mimes, the copious

street drinking.”

“Well, it was warm last week.”

Ah yes. The old ‘it was balmy for two minutes in

April’ argument. That one never gets old.

“It was, you’re right.” My pint glass is freezing,

but the beer inside – just as I suspected – is as

tepid and flat as my false hope. “But I’m not

gonna hold my breath.”




Ben Bailey’s Great Escape picks


Photo by Charlotte Patmore


The trajectory of Kojey Radical’s move from artist

and poet to musician has propelled him into a unique

place in hip hop. Emerging at a tangent from a scene

dominated by grime, this East London rapper has

forged a wholly unique sound and the beginnings

of an intriguing career, almost entirely on his own

terms. The fact he lost out on a Mobo award (twice!)

might have even helped. As a socially conscious lyricist,

Radical made a big impact with intelligent and

searching tracks like Kwame Nkrumah and Bambu,

but has since sidestepped the political pigeonhole.

His most recent release, If Only, combines jittery

spoken word with a strident chantable chorus. He’s

an inventive maverick, but a crossover hit can’t be

far away.


Humble, a little

weary and defiantly

lo-fi, Goat Girl

are an all-female

four-piece with silly

stage names and

songs so short they

rarely hit the three-minute mark. The band’s debut

album came out last month and featured 19 tracks

across 40 minutes, each a curious blend of retro

styles and of-the-minute sensibilities. Hailing from

the same South London scene that gave us bands

like Shame, Sorry and Fat White Family, Goat Girl

offer a hazy musical snapshot of life in a city on the

skids. Lead singer Clottie Cream delivers her wry

lyrics with a kind of Lou Reed fatalism, occasionally

tipping into real anger on songs about burning Tories

and wanting to smash the heads of guys filming her

on the train. Musically, it’s a mix of post-punk and

60s garage, with sisterly harmonies and sassy tunes.


Alex Lynn’s musical

career took off when

she was studying maths

and physics on a football

scholarship at Long

Island University. Having

returned home to Australia,

her plans to do a PhD

in astrophysics have now been put on hold due to the

unforeseen popularity of her breezy and upbeat folk

pop. That this 23-year-old can succeed as a sportswoman,

an academic and a musician might make

some of us feel a little inadequate, but luckily her

precocious talents are matched by humble charisma

and disarming lyrical honesty. Alex The Astronaut’s

simple storytelling style taps into a tradition of frank

female songwriters from Suzanne Vega to Courtney

Barnett, while her ‘coming out’ hit Not Worth Hiding

became an unofficial anthem for the ‘Yes’ campaign

in the Australian gay marriage vote.


Comprised of three ‘very nice, polite young people

from a picturesque market town in rural East Anglia’,

Gaffa Tape Sandy know they are ‘a publicist’s nightmare’,

yet the trio’s upfront music is capable of doing

the work of a thousand press releases. A set on the

BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury last year was

a turning point for the self-effacing band from Bury

St Edmunds, and they’ve since received rave reviews

for their fuzzed-up and frenetic alt rock. The group

provide all the ingredients you need for a good indie

gig: top tunes, a great sound and faintly disturbing

yet tongue-in-cheek lyrics. In short, the trio offer the

adrenaline rush of early Ash singles, the mischievous

melodies of Violent Femmes and the satisfying guitar

crunch of The White Stripes.

Thursday 17th - Saturday 19th May




Ben Bailey’s Great Escape picks



Grace Carter’s ex

boyfriend must be

feeling kind of weird

right now. The

Brighton singer has

seen her star rise

sharply this year on

the back of a handful of singles, all inspired by personal

heartbreak. The straight-up honesty of songs

like Silhouette and Ashes gives her soulful vocals a

real emotional punch, depicting relationship fallout

with an intensity you no longer expect from R&B

ballads. Having grown up listening to the likes of

Nina Simone and Lauryn Hill, the 20-year-old

singer also knows her way around a lyric, making

her troubles relatable with hooks to boot. Carter

has toured with Dua Lipa and Rag‘n’Bone Man

and has a summer of festival appearances, and much

more besides, ahead of her.


Anyone after some unadulterated grunge rock

should listen out for this thrashy guitar band from

Brighton. Though their name suggests they might

be a riot grrrl group, Gender Roles are actually a

trio of lads inspired by a slightly different vein of

American alt rock. If we’re talking 90s touchstones,

let’s just say they owe more to Kurt than Courtney.

Other influences include Tubelord and Wavves and

you can tell they probably listened to their fair share

of hardcore and emo back in the day. Though they

only got going two years ago, the band have already

bagged plenty of radio play as well as support slots

with Jamie Lenman. Gender Roles’ second EP

came out last month, and they’ve just got back from

a ‘free entry’ headline tour of the UK. They’re off

again with Touché Amoré later in the year.


With a jangly and shimmering guitar tone that

wouldn’t seem out of place on a Sarah Records

compilation, Breathe Panel sound more relaxed

than most current indie bands, even when the music

is rounded out with soaring vocals and pulsing

motorik beats. It’s a little bit shoegaze, a little bit

garage. The sort of thing you’ll ease into and fall for

without noticing. Started by two childhood friends

who moved here for uni, the band was forged

through a shared love of West Coast Americana,

krautrock and drone music. Their debut album

is due in July and was produced by Hookworms’

MJ, to be released on local label FatCat Records.

After sharing stages with Big Moon, Quilt and

Honeyblood, this year’s Great Escape could be the

moment when Breathe Panel’s vista really opens up.


A string of top festival slots

put White Room on the

map for many last year,

though they were also

helped along by a glowing

recommendation from Paul

Weller. In fact, Weller was so impressed he booked

the band to support him and even gave them time

in his studio. This Brighton five-piece have certainly

nailed their style, borrowing from 60s guitar pop

(The Kinks, The Beatles) to make an anthemic and

danceable modern version of what they call ‘surrealist

psych-pop’. White Room have a great frontman

in Jake Smallwood and some suitably kooky ideas

(their debut release was a double concept EP based

on the number 8). Their recent single, Twisted Celebration,

comes with a video of the band frolicking

on the carousel on Brighton beach. Warning: may

contain paisley.


Photo : Billy Merson as ‘Idle Jack’ at Brighton in 1910



Blake Morrison

at Charleston Festival

You’re appearing at

Charleston Festival this

month to talk about

your latest novel, The

Executor. What do you

make of the rise of

festivals? In general they’re

a good thing – a chance

for writers to meet their

readers and vice versa. The

smaller the festival, the

greater chance there is of

that happening. Charleston

is one of the best organised

and most congenial.

The Executor tells the

story of Matt Holmes,

who is asked by Robert

Pope to oversee the

terms of his will. When

Pope dies suddenly Matt has to negotiate

the rather contradictory terms of the will

and the concerns of Pope’s widow, Jill. Do

you have experience of being an executor

yourself? I haven’t appointed a literary executor,

and though I’ve agreed to act as one, for a

friend, he’s younger than me, and with luck I’ll

never be called on. Many writers leave behind

contradictory instructions in their wills. Often

they’ll ask for work that embarrasses them, but

which deserves to be preserved, to be destroyed.

If wills were followed to the letter, then we

wouldn’t have Kafka’s novels. Executors have to

weigh up how best to serve the author’s interests.

Sometimes they’re loyal, paradoxically, by

betraying them. After all, if writers really want

things they’ve written to be destroyed, why not

do it themselves?

A lawyer briefs Matt on the law concerning

literary wills in the novel.

How did you research this?

At an academic conference

on ethics and life-writing

at Goldsmiths a few years

back, I heard a very good

talk by a lawyer. Afterwards

I followed up some of the

cases he’d alluded to as well

as finding a few more – all of

them relating to the eternal

war between the right to

privacy on the one hand, and

freedom of expression on the


Robert Pope’s will sets

off the action of the

novel. You make him a

poet, not a novelist, a

playwright, or a memoirist.

What was it about making Pope a poet that

appealed to you? It wasn’t a deliberate choice,

more serendipity. I wrote the poems first, over

a number of years, didn’t feel they were really

‘mine’, began to see how they could form part

of a novel, and then developed the character of

Robert Pope – revising the poems and adding

new ones as I went along.

At one point Matt reflects on what makes

a great writer. Have you thought about this

yourself? I think about it all the time, but I don’t

have any answers beyond the obvious. Style,

subject matter, intelligence, a responsiveness

to the zeitgeist that also addresses the eternal

verities – all play their part.

Interview by John O’Donoghue

Blake Morrison is in conversation with Hermione

Lee at the Charleston Festival, 5.30pm, 20th May.


Photo © Julia Willms



How to Be Yoncé

A beginner’s guide

Times are hard and yet Beyoncé seems to have it

all. Stephanie van Batum and Stacyian Jackson are

bringing their easy guide to being more Bey to the

Fringe. Stephanie tells us how to get started.

It came about as kind of a joke. I was thinking

about my graduation piece from theatre school and

I actually wanted to make Romeo and Juliet, then I

said to my friends ‘or we could just make a show

about Beyoncé’ and then we were like, ‘maybe we

do make a show about Beyoncé...’

What would it be like if we made a YouTube

tutorial? You know these things, ‘ten steps to do

your makeup like Kim Kardashian’, where everything

can be self-taught through a tutorial. We

thought, ‘if Beyoncé is such an icon, the example of

a woman who has it all - mother, wife, singer, dancer,

sexy, feminist, business woman - then maybe

we could make a tutorial on how to become her’.

It’s an ironic take on the idea that you can become

anything as long as you work hard enough.

We thought, ‘what are the bits and pieces that

Beyoncé is made of?’ When you break it down

it’s not that hard. The basic things come first, like

the voice, the moves, then at a certain point we

realised that everywhere she goes, there’s wind

blowing in her hair. So, we were going to need a

wind machine.

The whole thing is presented as a seminar.

We explain the essential dance moves, how to be

a feminist (but a sexy one), and how you need an

alter ego of course (like Sasha Fierce or Yoncé).

The audience can dance and sing along and we

give them assignments for homework. By the end

of it, they are all in the Beyhive.

Of course, the deeper lying meaning of the

piece has to do with feminism, identity, gender

and race. Me and my friends talk about how it’s

not easy being a woman these days. You have to

have everything and if one piece is missing you’re

clearly a failure. We have to make a joke about it.

Be a feminist… but you also have to get married

to Jay-Z? It’s also a piece about appropriation art.

Beyoncé copied and borrowed from a lot of other

artists and everything that we do in the show is

copied from things that she did. So, it’s a copy of a

copy of a copy, which is an interesting artistic idea.

We performed in Berlin and Cologne and it

was a spectacular hit with the LGBTQ community

but it’s also for straight men, 80-year-old

grandmothers, teenagers… It doesn’t matter if

you’re a man, woman, black, white, old, young, fat,

skinny, rich or poor; this is the most democratic

way of becoming more Beyoncé. It’s about celebrating

who you are, embracing your flaws. You

don’t have to have it all. But you can pretend that

you do… As told to Lizzie Lower

Don’t Worry be Yoncé. The Warren, 1st-3rd June,





Before Willard

The Lives They Left Behind

Suitcases full of photographs, books of poems,

unmarked graves; this is the secret and tragic world

of Willard State Hospital. Director Laura Holland

talks about bringing forgotten histories back to life,

in the open air.

Lucy Flack, my co-director, came to me and

said, ‘I’ve found the most fascinating thing, The

Suitcase Exhibit.’ The exhibit’s online, but there’s a

book with the same name which chronicles patients

at the Willard State Hospital in New York. Some

were there for up to 75 years – until their death.

We were so intrigued by these people’s lives

and by what was in their suitcases, and we thought

their histories would make captivating theatre. So

we got our detective heads on, piecing together

clues, trying to imagine what their lives were like

before the asylum. One patient, Irma Medina, had

over 150 pages of sheet music in her suitcase! Irma

was a songstress who lived during the Depression.

Her landlady accused her of ‘queer behaviour’, like

hearing voices; she also struggled to pay her rent. It

feels like a minor thing, but it lead to institutionalisation.

She spent 40 years at Willard.

One of our biggest challenges was putting together

stories that didn’t cross over the same span

of time; the asylum opened in 1869 and closed in

1995. So we know more about some patients than

others, and there are conditions we know so much

more about now: one patient was a photographer

who was epileptic, but they didn’t understand seizures

at the time. He underwent a trephine – where

they drilled into the right side of his skull, to try to

improve things. But it made him worse and they

couldn’t cope with his condition. That’s why he

was put in the asylum. He lived his whole life there,

with no hope of going back out into the world.

The Lives They Left Behind is quite a dark,

haunting piece, but there are moments of light.

Patients were buried in unmarked graves and lived

their whole lives in an institution, completely forgotten

about; we wanted to give them an identity.

The gravedigger, Lawrence Marek, was paid a

couple of dollars to wrap the bodies so the staff

wouldn’t have to do it; he buried over 900 patients.

When he died, tragically, he was buried in the same

cemetery, in an unmarked grave.

We introduced the actors initially to the exhibit

itself, with small excerpts of people’s histories.

They have an emotional connection to the stories

now – a responsibility to shed some light on these

people’s lives. At the end of the piece they wanted

to become themselves and talk honestly about the

people’s stories.

Our company is made up of people aged 16-19

and we have a cast of 50 – which might be unheard

of at the Fringe! And we’re nervous about performing

outside. But we’re excited – just hoping the

weather holds out...

As told to Amy Holtz

Brighton Open Air Theatre, 9th May, 7.30pm






Gilbert & George EXISTERS 1984.

ARTIST ROOMS Tate and National

Galleries of Scotland. Acquired

jointly through The d’Offay Donation

with assistance from the National

Heritage Memorial Fund and Art

Fund 2008. © Gilbert & George.

Admission payable

Free for young people (under 26) & members

The ARTIST ROOMS touring programme is delivered by the National Galleries of Scotland and Tate in

a partnership with Ferens Art Gallery until 2019, supported using public funding by the National Lottery

through Arts Council England, by Art Fund and by the national Lottery through Creative Scotland.



Photo by Sally Jubb

Adam’s journey

Egypt to Scotland, woman to man

Director Cora Bissett discusses Adam, the remarkable

true story of a young transgender man’s journey

from Egypt to Scotland to find hope, honesty and


Sometimes you don’t know why something

affects you so deeply. I saw Adam give this

monologue about his life – an endearingly humble

teenage kid, telling this incredibly brave story.

He grew up up in Egypt, where people barely

recognise homosexuality, let alone transgender

people, so he simply had no awareness of it. He

travelled to the UK out of fear, and he didn’t even

know he could claim asylum – he just knew he had

to get out. There’s something extraordinary about

a young, transgender male, landing in Scotland of

all places, in this little flat in Glasgow, and, through

his laptop, discovering who he is.

We’re so used to hearing about violations of

people’s rights and cruelties through the internet

– more so right now than ever. But on the

flip side, Adam accessed a worldwide community

of people like himself, just by typing ‘I feel like I’m

going mad, I feel like a boy in a girl’s body’ and

receiving an ocean of responses from all over the

world. I don’t know how Adam would have found

those people in everyday life – or a way to describe

what he was, but watching other people go through

it online gave him the confidence to do it himself.

It feels like a story of our times, in a crucially

urgent, original way.

There’s an incredible TED talk by Eric

Whitacre, an American classical composer,

about creating a virtual choir. I wanted a theatrical

way to reflect how Adam was supported and

strengthened by all these people when he met on

the internet, so I asked Eric if he minded doing

something similar for Adam. We connected with

over 150 people from as many far flung places

as we could – Norway, Nigeria, Portugal, North

America. Jocelyn Pook created a beautiful piece

of music, so singers just put their headphones on,

sang along and sent it back to us. Everyone in the

choir is transgender or non-binary – some from

places where it’s very dangerous to be out. We’re

bringing out a book charting the stories of each

singer as part of the Mental Health Arts Festival in

Scotland in May.

Many people don’t realise that Adam plays himself;

there’s power in the fact that he’s onstage

sharing his life with you. Adam was initially happy

for me to use his story, but I just couldn’t find

the right person to play him onstage. But then he

called me and asked if I would consider auditioning

him. He had real raw talent, so much emotional

authenticity. We were concerned that it would be

too difficult for him to keep reliving his life. But

Adam’s in such a good place now, happily married

and settled in Glasgow. He’s gone on an extraordinary,

honest journey – both in life and as an actor.

People can see he’s a beautiful human being, trying

to live well and be happy. As told to Amy Holtz

Theatre Royal, 9th-12th May


4.6 | Green Door Store, Brighton

Rival Consoles

9.6 | St. George’s Church, Brighton

Neat Neat Neat present

Julie Byrne

11.6 | Komedia, Brighton

Laura Veirs

22.6 | St. George’s Church, Brighton

Eric Bibb

17.7 | The Hope & Ruin, Brighton


29.8 | Komedia, Brighton

The Freewheeling

Yo La Tengo

17.9 | Komedia, Brighton

Lost Horizons

23.10 | Komedia, Brighton


9.11 | The Old Market, Brighton

Gruff Rhys

27.11 | Ropetackle, Shoreham



Sat 5 May


Sat 8 & Sun 9 Sep


Sat 1 Sep



Sat 22 & Sun 23 Sep

Tickets for shows are available from your local record shop, or the venue where possible.

box office 0844 847 1515 *

*calls cost 7p per minute plus your phone

company’s access charge



Baba Brinkman

Rap scientist

There can’t be many rappers

who focus on the science

of evolution and global

warming, and probably even

fewer who perform at climate

conferences. Canadian

rapper Baba Brinkman does

just that in his Rap Guide to

Climate Chaos.

Rap and science are unusual

bedfellows – do you ever

have trouble explaining

what it is you do? It’s easy to explain what I do: I

communicate complicated scientific ideas through

rap songs (and comedy). Done. The trouble comes

from the inability of most people to imagine how

that could possibly work, until they see it. Recently

Adrian Baker tweeted ‘I was skeptical about rap-science…

but wow was I wrong!’ and I tweeted back

‘Skepticism of science rap may turn out to be one of

the fundamental elements of the human condition.’

So yeah, I’m swimming upstream, but it’s good


What a does a Rap Guide to Climate Chaos

contribute to the public debate? The big mystery

about climate change isn’t what’s causing it, or how

dangerous it is. The real puzzle is the social psychology

of it: the way most people are able to fully

accept the threat and continue with their lives unperturbed,

with no plans to change their behaviour.

And I include myself in this assessment. At its heart,

climate change is a collective action problem, also

known as a tragedy of the commons. So what’s the

solution? Finding ways to move the crowd. That’s

where rap comes in.

How did you come to perform at the Paris

Climate Conference? An organization called the

Coalition for Rainforest Nations invited me to join

their team at the conference.

My main job was to attend

daily meetings, listen to the

substance of their negotiations,

and write a custom rap

summary (a ‘rap up’). The

response was initial skepticism,

followed by disorientation,

realization, and finally

elation. It was awesome.

How much progress has

been made since then?

The cost of renewables is falling, but as long as the

underlying incentive structure rewards polluting,

we’re on a direct path to stunning sea level rise

and increasingly extreme weather. The biggest

obstacles? Donald Trump, followed closely by

Scott Pruitt, Ryan Zinke, Rick Perry, human greed,

apathy and tribalism.

Tell us about your other shows… My Rap Guide

to Consciousness is running off-Broadway in New

York all spring and Canterbury Tales Remixed was at

the Edinburgh Fringe in 2014. I also have a new

show about learning and culture as a Darwinian

process that’s complementary to and continuous

with genetic evolution. How else can you explain

the worldwide dominance of hip-hop, which blew

up entirely in my lifetime?!

Why is hip-hop such a powerful medium?

Hip-hop as an art form wasn’t invented by any one

person. It’s a product of cultural evolution, with

small variations accumulating - norms, technologies,

ideas, styles - based on the outcomes they

produced, which in the beginning was all about live

performance and competition. Hip-hop has the

power it has because of what it went through to get

here. Where it evolves next is up to us. Ben Bailey

Komedia, 21st May, 7.15pm/9.15pm, £10

Photo by Olivia Sebesky


Dv8 Artist Open House

A selection of work from staff and students

Central Trail - House 8 12 Queen Square, Brighton, BN1 3FD Weekends and Bank Holidays in May, 10am - 4pm

Photo by Thomas Allison

Photo by Liz Grossman




Share the shame

For the uninitiated, Mortified is the ‘cultural

phenomenon’ in which adults take to the stage to

share embarrassing artefacts from their childhoods

– diary entries, short films, poetry – with

both the live audience and the online community

of podcast listeners and Netflix viewers. Since

the first stage shows in LA in 2002, Mortified has

spread across the US and Europe. This month,

the first ever Brighton shows take place at The

Warren as part of the Fringe. We speak to Reuben

Williams, one of the show’s producers.

Sometimes people don’t know that something

they’ve written is funny, or they don’t know

why it’s funny. What we do is between us we will

go through the material with them and pick out

the best bits. We work very hard to make sure the

person going on stage can be confident that it’s

going to work and it’s going to be entertaining.

Sometimes when you understand something

better it’s a lot funnier, so we ask them, ‘why were

you doing this? What kind of kid were you?’

One woman came to us with a lot of poetry

she had written as a teenager, but she hadn’t

realised that so much of it was about a crush she

had on one of her teachers. She had basically

written a whole anthology of love poems. It

wasn’t until we started probing her that she

realised that was what it was.

A big theme is obviously romance and sexuality

– finding the perfect partner, first crushes,

or sometimes discovering that your sexuality isn’t

what you thought. But it’s also a time when relationships

with your family become more stressful,

you have more independence, and so you’re

redefining those relationships. And self-identity:

wanting to be cool or wanting to be an artist or

a poet or a lad. Your teenage diaries are basically

you chronicling your attempts to change into the

person you want to be.

What makes people want to do it? I wish we

knew. Most people have seen the show or listened

to the podcast and think it’s a really funny

premise. A lot of people have said that it’s quite

cathartic, quite therapeutic. It’s self-deprecating,

but it’s acknowledging the ways that you’ve

changed and grown. It’s a tool of self-enquiry. In

some ways it’s completely nerve-wracking. But

on the other hand, the audience are so warm, so

lovely. It’s a celebration of our frailties and our

shared humanity.

We always finish the show with the closing

line: ‘We are freaks, we are fragile, and we all

survived.’ As told to Rebecca Cunningham

The Warren, 30th-31st May,


Photo Courtesy of The Leonard Bernstein Office, Inc.




Tickets available from

St Paul’s Church,

West St, Brighton


(between Clock Tower

and Odeon Cinema)

Producer: Norman Jacobs

WED 9 MAY 7.30pm – Anna Litvinenko

Bernstein, Britten, Copland for cello & piano

WED 16 MAY 7.30pm – Rachel Gorman,

Steve Dummer, Norman Jacobs Bernstein,

Stravinsky, Feldman for violin & clarinet

WED 23 MAY 7.30pm – Rebecca Griffiths,

Daniel Lauro, Norman Jacobs Bernstein,

Messiaen, Mayuzumi for flute, piano,

percussion – Premiere of VLUG

by Stephen Montague

WED 30 MAY 7.30pm – Mehreen Shah,

Zhanna Kemp Songs by Bernstein,

Sondheim, Weill

Songs from Syria

©Gerard Collett

iyatraQuartet with the Saleh Brothers

Brighton Open Air Theatre

Thu 3 rd May 6pm doors/7pm start

£12/£10 conc./£8 group(10+)

An extraordinary musical journey through traditional songs

from Syria and brand new collaborations



Brighton Film Quartet

Factotum musician Penny Loosemore

So you’re director, composer, pianist… I wear

a huge number of hats! Too many sometimes. I’m

website manager, I write music by hand for all

instruments, sell CDs, put up posters. It’s a lot. But

I love what we do.

How did you become a composer? There were

many years of incubation. My dad got me a piano

out of a skip when I was four. I should have gone

on to study music, but I became a journalist instead

and ran a fashion business. I moved to Hove

aged 36, and moved house so often I switched the

piano for a keyboard. Although initially unsure,

this led to me teaching myself about technology.

I went to see a Ludovico Einaudi concert at the

Dome and was bowled over. He performed with

a few musicians and a VJ, and it was cutting-edge,

minimalist and mesmerising. There was an exceptional


Where did you go from there? I started composing

music for short films then got a job as a pianist

at the Grand Hotel, but realised I wanted to compose

as well as play. Five years ago, I advertised for

musicians. We’ve been a female quartet for most of

that time – Emma on clarinet, Sophie on cello, Abi

on violin. We performed acoustic gigs for three

years, and audiences told us that our music created

mental images. So we began combining live music

with film as the Brighton Film Quartet.

What is SOUNDSCAPE? Our own live cinematic

compositions in front of a screening of a series

of short films, made by Sussex filmmakers.

What would be your dream venue? SOUND-

SCAPE lends itself to different venues. We’ve

played at Brighton Pavilion and the Duke of

York’s, as well as lots of festivals. What we love is

somewhere dark and intimate. Ideally, in the audience,

you need to feel completely cocooned so you

can be taken on a ‘journey’ of the senses.

What do you feel about women composers

in the 21st century? It’s easier for me because

I work under my own steam, I’m not competing

with male composers. But women who do, say it’s

very difficult. We want to bring these concerts to

youngsters who experience very little live music,

so we’re looking for local businesses to sponsor

our SOUNDSCAPE 4 Schools project. But part

of it is about demonstrating that women can be

successful composers as well as performers. Music

can cut through barriers, and our use of technology

makes it more accessible for young people.

They need to be inspired to get into music, and we

can help do that.

What’s a great night out for you? Going to Jazz

Jam at the Brunswick. After six years hiding in the

shadow, I now get up and sing.

What’s next? World domination! We’re stalking

an agency called Serious. We’ve set our hearts on

being represented by them. Emma Chaplin

Spiegeltent, 6th May, 7pm, £8-10 /

















Ezra Furman

A leap into the great unknown

I had to be talked into coming to perform in

England. There was so little interest in the States

that I’d decided to quit. I’d been doing it too long.

Then five years ago this guy I know in England,

who had booked us before, said ‘you gotta get over

here. Something’s happening, it’s time to strike!’

I didn’t really believe him, but he talked me into

coming. When I saw the audiences at the shows,

then I believed him.

There’s a change of mood on the new record.

The aim was to make music that’s a little less about

having a good time. It’s more concerned with saying

something real and vital and challenging. I wanted

the new record to be a leap into the great unknown.

I’m really good at ignoring everyone’s advice. I

don’t think much about how music will be released

while I’m working on it and I try to block off most

input from anyone else. There’s a private world that

I inhabit where the good stuff comes from.

I always write about what I’m obsessed with.

Right now, it’s fear and solidarity. Reading the news

aggravates my childhood fears of white supremacy.

I’m descended from refugees on one side of

my family, and it’s a story that goes straight to the

Holocaust. It’s a story I’ve been hearing about

since I was a child. So to have a white supremacist

president really scares me. And it also awakens this

urgent need to show solidarity with people who are

frightened and threatened.

I’m not totally sure what identity politics

means. People sometimes take a conversational

tone with each other that divides them. I don’t

think that’s the way it needs to be, or should be. For

instance, if you’re trying to advocate for the poor,

that goes across a bunch of different identities. It’s

shocking to me that somehow a lot of people are

convinced that it’s white men versus everybody else.

I don’t like to divide it that way.

I’m not comfortable with labels and I often

float between them. There’s a few that I do

claim as my own: I’m comfortable with queer,

I’m comfortable with Jewish, I feel like the word

male applies to me... pretty much. I feel a little bit

wobbly on that one, but I’ll take it because it seems

arbitrary to me. I’m sort of like, well, you can call

me what you want, but if you get to know me you’ll

see that it’s a little more complex.

But I’m definitely an American. I’m influenced

by a lot of American music and imagery, but in the

past five years we’ve probably played more shows

in the UK than we have in the US. We still have

a rock’n’roll garage band set-up, but we’ve also

incorporated some unusual elements. If I told you

more it wouldn’t be a surprise. It’s good to retain

the ability to surprise. As told to Ben Bailey

Brighton Dome, 26th May, 8pm £17.50/15




Focus On: Museum of Ordinary People

Curators Lucy Malone and Jolie Booth

What is the Museum of Ordinary People? The

idea is to tell stories that have been left out of

history books by using everyday objects and collections

and presenting them in a museum space. We

want to represent real people and who we are now.

Our first exhibition is happening this month, with

the creation of a pop-up museum in The Spire.

How did it come about? Jolie opened a squat near

the clock tower in 2003 and discovered a whole

woman’s life untouched; everything left behind.

She began to uncover the story of Anne Clarke,

who had been immersed in the counter-culture of

Brighton. Jolie made a theatre piece about her, and

a walking tour, which is where we met. I had just

made an archive and exhibition of my late mother’s

artwork, and Jolie and I realised that there were

parallels in the way we worked. We both used

objects to tell stories of women whose lives would

not necessarily have been recorded or written into

the history books. Then Jolie had an idea to do it

on a bigger scale.

Who and what will be in the show? We selected

ten local participants, aged between 20 and 65, who

all have incredible collections. One woman is working

with a collection of personal letters written to

her by her late father. Another participant found a

collection of diaries at a car boot sale which tell the

story of a woman’s life and her struggle with MS.

We’re also working with RISE (the domestic abuse

charity), the youth group Miss Represented and

PACT (Parents and Children Together).

How did you decide what to show? We held

workshops over the course of six weeks prior to

the exhibition, teaching about archival theory,

museums, curation and display and also creative

sessions to help the participants develop a piece of

work with their collections. We had no idea what

the participants would produce in response.

What’s been most interesting about working

in this way? The model for these workshops came

from our own work, and, for me, that work was a

really therapeutic process. There is connection and

belonging built through everyday objects. We’re

working with people on how to express that. It’s

healing and reparative and we’re meeting more and

more people who want to work in this way.

Our goal is to have a permanent space, preferably

in Brighton. Brighton people are extraordinary

even when they are ordinary, and there is a need to

record that. As told to Lizzie Lower by Lucy Malone

The Spire, Eastern Road, 29th May – 3rd Jun.




Ian Mowforth

The Dog Show

Artists Open Kennels

The Artists Open Houses festival returns for its

37th year but, with over 200 venues and upwards

of 1,000 artists to choose from, where do we begin?

It being the Chinese Year of the Dog, we thought

we’d start with The Dog Show, the canine-themed

open house of Joanna Osborne (co-author of the

fabulous Best in Show - Knit Your Own Dog, amongst

other titles).

Why a dog-themed open house? For many,

many years I’ve had a knitwear business with Sally

Muir, my greatest friend and co-author. We’ve just

finished our tenth book together. Sally has become

a very successful painter of dogs. Of humans and

landscapes, too, but she has a particular empathy

with dogs. I’ve always loved dogs, too, and have

started to make clay sculptures of them. They’ve

been a part of my life forever and ever. The very

first thing I knitted when I was eight was a dog coat.

Where did you find the other artists? Because

of what we do, we meet a lot of other artists, not

only from Brighton but from all over the place.

The ones we’ve selected for the show work in lots

of different styles, but they all make dogs. We’ve

got the fabric sculptures of ‘Holy Smoke’, who we

met doing Selvedge fair about fifteen years ago, and

we have the photographer, Alma Haser, taking dog




Sally Muir

Alma Haser

portraits. I’ll be showing my clay dog sculptures

and Sally is doing her portraits. We’ve got work by

‘Felted Fido’, who has thousands and thousands of

followers and lives in Ayrshire with her eight dogs,

and Bridget Baker and Robin Parker who both

make wire sculptures. There are others too, we’ll

be showing around 200 pieces by twelve of the best

dog artists. Most of the work in the show is beautifully

restrained and realistic, they’re not cartoon

versions of dogs.

How do you go about planning the show? It’s a

huge undertaking, starting about six months before

with collecting the artists together. Then it’s a case

of completely clearing the downstairs of our house

(I have a very willing husband), which reveals a

great deal of yellowing paintwork, so we paint and,

this year, we’ll take up the carpets and have the floor

sanded so it’s more like a gallery. It’s a great impetus

to clear out the room and get rid of all the old junk.

How many visitors are you expecting? I think

we had around 3,000 people last year. There is

never a moment when there’s not somebody in the

house and, most of the time, I absolutely love it.

We do teas in the kitchen and there are loads of

dogs. My husband, Orlando, makes dog biscuits to

give out. This year we’ll have a real dog show in my

neighbour’s garden (on the 20th of May). I’m slightly

panic stricken about it… I’ve never done one

before. The prize for Best in Show is a sitting with

Sally. Interview by Lizzie Lower

33 Silwood Road, venue 10 on the Brunswick Town

Trail. Weekends from the 5th-27th May, plus Monday

7th. 11am-6pm.

Felted Fido





In town this month...

If you don’t like art, you’d best leave town.

Between the Festival, the Fringe and Artists

Open Houses, you’ll not be able to walk

a hundred yards without tripping over an

exhibition. Here are just a few to get you started.

The Children’s Parade, the biggest arty party

of them all, kicks off the Brighton Festival on

Saturday the 5th from 10.30am. Around 5,000

school children from across the area will be

waving their creations as they process through

the streets. This year’s theme is ‘Paintings’ so

expect papier-mâché Mona Lisas, poster-paint

Picassos, and ten-foot-tall walking sunflowers.

Photo by Victor Frankowski

Joshua Uvieghara at Phoenix Open Studios

Photo by Manel Ortega

The Artists Open Houses festival is back for its 37th

year (!) with 200 venues, on 14 trails, showing the work by

upwards of 1,000 artists and makers over the four weekends

during May. What to pick? How about a festival within a

festival with over 100 artists, designers and makers under

one roof: Phoenix Brighton are holding their Open Studios

on Saturday the 19th and Sunday 20th of May (11am-5pm).

Or maybe The Stanley Road Store, holding their last

Open House at their Stanley Road home! (Don’t worry,

the Stanley Road Shopette continues in the North Laine

Bazaar). Weekends from the 5th until the 27th. []

Solid State, a collection of new work by the

hugely popular Ryan Callanan (aka RYCA), is

at Whistleblower Gallery from the 3rd of May.

Producing artwork that he refers to as ‘poptorian’:

a combination of his Victorian signage style and

his fascination with pop art, Ryan is best known

for his distinctive lush typography and his 3D acid

house smileys. For this solo show he has produced

a brand-new body of abstract work that looks at

landscape, still life and portraiture. Until the 4th of

June (14 St John’s Rd).

Ryan Callanan




In town this month... (cont)

Naked Eye Gallery hosts The Italian Job: works from five acclaimed

contemporary Italian artists, brought to Brighton by Stefania Dal

Ferro and Dada Projects, whose aim is to promote social and cultural

integration through the arts. See works in a variety of different mediums:

Massimo Ballardini creates prints and glass structures; Fabio Guerra

combines archaeological fragments into modern ceramics; Piero

Martinello takes a (much) closer look at money; Nicola Tessari explores

the beauty of the raw material in his carved wooden objects, and Paolo

Polloniato uses ancient shapes to create contemporary ceramics.

Piero Martinello

Brett Goodroad

From the 5th, US artist,

Brett Goodroad has

his UK premiere at

Phoenix Brighton as

part of Brighton Festival.

Growing up in Montana,

he has driven combines

through the Breadbasket,

wrangled buffalo in

the Gallatin Valley, and

delivered organic vegetables through America’s Southwest. Now he

lives and paints in his San Francisco backyard. (Wed-Sun, 11am-5pm.)

Perdita Sinclair

From the 10th, Farewell

Seapig is at 35 North in

North Road. Well used to

collaborating with scientists

(she was the first artist in

residence at The Millennium

Seed Bank and has undertaken

residencies in human

dissection laboratories), artist

Perdita Sinclair presents

paintings inspired by an

invasion of black sea snails

in this multidisciplinary art

installation. (Until 3rd June.)



Contemporary British

Painting and Sculpture

We look forward to welcoming

you to our gallery in Hove.


Mon—Sat 10.30am—5pm

Sunday/bank holidays 12pm—5pm

Closed Tuesday

1 Victoria Grove, 2nd Avenue, Hove BN3 2LJ

TELEPHONE 01273 727234 EMAIL

A Woman Ahead of Her Time

5 May - 31 December 2018









To mark the 1918 Act that

gave the first voting rights to

women, this interactive

exhibition explores the life

and achievements of

Elizabeth Ilive who lived at

Petworth House from the late

1780s. Discover more about

her intellectual interests in

science with a re-imagining

of the laboratory she

established in the house.

Petworth House, Petworth, GU28 0AE

Registered charity no. 205846

Viva Brighton.indd 1 13/04/2018 17:17



Expect to see the paintings of Helsinki-based street artist Jussi

TwoSeven popping up around the city. Together the works in All

City Movement make up a tribute to the natural world and act as

a clarion call to protect and conserve the environment, including

the urban sphere. Presented as part of Brighton Fringe’s Finnish

Season 2018. Don’t forget that the ‘living sculptures’ and Royal

Academicians Gilbert & George are in town at Brighton Museum

and Art Gallery. ARTISTS ROOMS: Gilbert & George comprises a

selection of works from their 50 years living and working together,

on show in the city for the first time. And, if you’re feeling inspired,

add your own mark to the festival at David Shrigley’s draw-alongyourself

installation, Life Drawing II, which continues at Fabrica until the 28th of May.

Jussi TwoSeven

Out of town...

Dreaming oneself awake, an exhibition of work by Eileen Agar RA, is

at Farleys House & Gallery in Chiddingly from the 20th. She was

the only British woman to be invited to exhibit her work at the 1936

International Surrealist Exhibition, and there began a lifelong friendship

with Roland Penrose and Lee Miller and, a number of subsequent visits

to their Sussex farmhouse home. The exhibition (open on Sundays

only) continues until the 15th of July. Join leading authority on British

Surrealism, Michel Remy, for a discussion on her work on Sunday, 20th

May (7pm, see for tickets).

Courtesy of Redfern Gallery

Claude Cahun, Self-portrait (as weight trainer), 1927, exhibition print from monochrome

negative, Jersey Heritage Trust © Jersey Heritage Collection

Agar’s work also features in Virginia Woolf: An Exhibition

Inspired by her Writings, a major touring exhibition arriving

at Pallant House in Chichester on the 26th. Featuring

80 female artists from 1854 to the present day, this

timely exhibition ‘seeks to show how her perspectives

on feminism and creativity have remained relevant to a

community of creative women across time: visual artists

working in photography, painting, sculpture and film who

have sought to record the vast scope of female experience

and to shape alternative ways

for women to be.’ Expect

works by Winifred Nicholson,

Vanessa Bell, Sandra Blow,

Gluck and many more besides.

Unmissable. (Until September

the 16th.)

France-Lise McGurn, Your Daughter’s Daughter, 2017

© Frances-Lise McGurn


16/17 June

23/24 June

30 June & 01 July


POWDER, a stylish salon on Duke Street, will

be showing work by local artists as

well as their own t-shirt designs.

For more information visit

or find us on

LA SHUKS: multi-media artist creating

landscapes of reimagined future nature

LOIS ORCHARD: punk-inspired,

hand-drawn cut and paste pop art

AIMEE LAMB: detailed and abstract

fashion and beauty illustration




Morag Myerscough


In divided times,

it makes us happy

that designer Morag


touring bandstand is

bringing the theme

‘Belonging’ to the

fore at this year’s

Brighton Festival.

The bandstand-cumart

installation is part

of Your Place, Kate

Tempest’s legacy

that puts elements of

festival programming

into the hands of the


Co-commissioned by

Brighton Festival and

Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft, this summer

the bandstand will host a bespoke line-up of acts

in a total of nine locations and as many different

guises. The project is inspired by the work of

Corita Kent: an artist, educator, social activist and

nun who ran with the likes of Charles and Ray

Eames in mid-century LA. Morag has wanted to

create a bandstand connected to ‘belonging’ for a

long time, and when she heard Ditchling Museum

of Art + Craft were holding a Corita Kent

exhibition, their commission presented the perfect

opportunity to bring the two together.

“[Kent’s work] was about empowering people

through creativity,” says Morag. “She believed

you can give people a voice through making

things.” To similar ends, the striking typographic

placards that adorn the bandstand are made

in response to a series of workshops held with

community groups

across the county,

from Hastings to


Morag used

assignments from

Kent’s posthumously

published book

Learning by Heart

to help each group

discover and

communicate their

own interpretation

of belonging.

Words generated

during these

exercises furnish the

bandstand, evoking

‘belonging’ as each

group feels it relates to their neighbourhood.

The Hangleton group imagined the landscape

and sunrise. Crawley thought of ‘Family, Friends,

Love and Rice’.

“We’re in this total moment of change,” Morag

explains, on a break from painting placards

with Brighton University’s Graphic Design

department. “Everything is upside down; nobody

really knows what the future is.”

The hope is that if we take time to stop, to think

about what it is to belong, we can connect with

where we are in the present. “If everything just

trundles along, you don’t question it”.

“It’s really important to question things, and

bring people together, different groups together,”

she says. “The danger with now is the individual:

only belonging to yourself, and forgetting the

other things.”




An Exhibition Inspired by her Writings

26 May – 16 Sep 2018

Organised by Tate St Ives in association with

Pallant House Gallery, Chichester and

The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

Dame Laura Knight, The Dark Pool, 1908–1918, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle

© Reproduced with permission of The Estate of Dame Laura Knight DBE RA 2018. All Rights Reserved

1-3 June 2018

10am – 5pm (last entry 4pm)

Live arts and crafts • Shopping • Exhibitors

House Opening • Hands-on workshops

West Dean College of Arts and Conservation, Chichester, West Sussex PO18 0RX

Ann Bruford


Adults £10 (Gate £12)

Children free

Students 16+ £5 (Gate £6)

*ends 25 May 2018



Photo by Ben Stenning

Open Studios

Phoenix Brighton




Over 100 artists/


under one roof


Fri 18 May 6–9pm


Sat 19 May 11am–5pm

Sun 20 May 11am–5pm

Phoenix Brighton

10–14 Waterloo Place

Brighton BN2 9NB

>>> Kent taught that you can’t change the world,

but making effort in small ways can have positive

effects far greater than we might expect. “I think

it’s just great if people can come together in a

small, not over-romantic way,” says Morag.

“What participants said they loved most was

just somebody else making them a cup of tea,

somebody having a chat, and even though those

things are simple, they’re more complex to make

happen than you think. Belonging is about the

everyday: the here and now.”

The sum of all this is, when we feel we belong, it’s

harder to feel bad. “I’m not the happiest person

in the world,” says Morag, “but… I know that if I

put art into spaces, it can really uplift people and

change their spirit. To be able to make work that

does that, makes me happy.” Chloë King

Enjoy Belonging on Hove Lawns (12th &

13th); at Your Place Hangleton (19th &

20th) and Your Place East Brighton (26th

& 27th). |

Photo by Ben Stenning


嘀 䔀 䔀 䈀 䔀 䔀

䄀 刀 吀 䜀 䄀 䰀 䰀 䔀 刀 夀

䰀 䤀 䴀 䤀 吀 䔀 䐀 䔀 䐀 䤀 吀 䤀 伀 一 倀 刀 䤀 一 吀 匀 伀 刀 䤀 䜀 䤀 一 䄀 䰀 倀 䄀 䤀 一 吀 䤀 一 䜀 匀 䌀 伀 䴀 䴀 䤀 匀 匀 䤀 伀 一 匀

㈀ 㔀 匀 夀 䐀 一 䔀 夀 匀 吀 刀 䔀 䔀 吀 ⸀ 䈀 刀 䤀 䜀 䠀 吀 伀 一

㈀ 㜀 アパート 㘀 㤀 㜀 㤀 圀 圀 圀 ⸀ 嘀 䔀 䔀 䈀 䔀 䔀 ⸀ 䌀 伀














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maker Jason Mosseri.

All materials, tools, and a simple

vegetarian lunch included, £490.

To book, check availability,

or to ask a question, email:

Or phone: 07795114982

Instagram: @hopespringschairs

For dates and further information:


This month, Adam Bronkhorst photographed five Brighton Fringe

performers, going about their daily business in their festival get-up.

We asked them: ‘What do you do before you go on stage?’ | 07879 401333

Beth-Louise Priestley, Shit-faced Shakespeare (The Warren, 10th-13th May)

“I take an anti-anxiety tablet about an hour beforehand. Either that or I drink a beer.

The sober cast are all allowed one drink at the ‘Drink-Up’ – after all, no one likes drinking alone!”


Mark Brailsford

The Treason Show (Horatio’s, 10th-12th May)

“I’m usually backstage writing new material!”


Alfie Ordinary

Help! I Think I Might Be Fabulous (Spiegeltent, 6th, 27th & 29th May)

“I sing a Queen song, usually Don’t Stop Me Now or We are the Champions.”


Nick Van Vlaenderen

South Coast Soul Revue (The Brunswick, 4th May)

“We just sit backstage and have a beer.”


Chi Chi Revolver

The Revolver Revue (Spiegeltent, 27th May)

“I learnt that standing with open body language boosts your confidence, so I always do that before I go on.”


We offer incredible new versions of food

and drink that you might find familiar.

We have sodas made in house with some

help from our centrifuge machine. They

have around one tenth of the sugar of

regular sodas.

Our cocktails are crafted with loving care

using house made essences, bitters and

artisanal spirits.

Some of our cakes have no added sugar.

Some are completely dairy free.

We are really proud of our velvety, house

made, organic cashew and tiger nut milk


Our coffee has to be tasted to be believed.

We only use the best butter, virgin coconut

oil (for our many non dairy/vegan

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Our tea is brewed in clean glass, to the

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gluten. That's right, everything. Even our

house made sourdough, sweet bakes and

our buttermilk fried chicken.

Our aim is excellence as standard.

We make super food for super people.


99 Trafalgar Street, Brighton, BN1 4ER

01273 620 036



Café Plenty

The Rummikub Curry Club

Earlier this year I went

to India. It was suitably

restorative, with mornings

spent doing yoga, lazy

days passed on the beach,

and evenings spent

playing Rummikub, an

unremarkable looking

but highly addictive

game. The holiday

is already a distant

memory but Rummikub

remains an obsession.

I’m on a constant, almost

evangelical, quest to

recruit new players, and

I’m willing to use bribery

if necessary.

To this end, I invite

a couple of friends to

dinner at Café Plenty one Wednesday evening on

the condition that we can play a few rounds after

we eat. I’d recently passed by late one night and

enviously eyed the delicious-looking thalis on the

tables inside: this formerly-just-daytime hotspot

has started opening on Wednesday to Sunday

evenings, offering Bengali street food, whilst the

Good Things Tap Bar serves up a dozen carefully

curated craft beers.

It’s inexplicably quiet on the evening we visit

and there is, admittedly, a bit of a wait for our

food but, when it arrives, the reason becomes

apparent. If ‘street food’ conjures up images of

handheld portions dispatched in a couple of bites,

think again. The table is soon laden with dishes:

two generous bowls of curry; one spicy fish with

whole, huge, red chillies, the other a creamy,

coconut vegan option, full of plantain and okra.

A great bowl of fragrant

rice is set down. There

are huge pieces of honeyroasted

paneer with pan

fried shallots - glazed

and utterly delicious,

crisp bhajis the size

of cricket balls, and a

dozen golden samosas,

six each of the lamb and

vegan options. Last to

the table are dishes of

roti, mango chutney,

and thick yoghurt spiced

with cloves and laced

with mint. It’s more feast

than finger food and the

flavours are superb. We

agree that it’s one of the

best curries any of us

has had in a long time. It’s nicely washed down

with pints of lychee-fragranced Lost Pier ‘Fruit

Machine’ IPA, and glasses of organic Spanish

wine, but we appear to have ordered food for eight

and eventually have to admit defeat.

Finally, it’s payback time and we set about the

serious business of Rummikub. Tiles dealt, rules

explained and three rounds in, Rummikub refuser

Tristan is hooked and I’m thinking the Rummikub

Curry Club might become a thing. Not only is

the food delicious, it’s incredibly good value at

£47.50 for the three of us (including the first

round of drinks). But I do suggest that you come

with six, order for three and, if you want to play

Rummikub… we’re recruiting. Lizzie Lower

Café Plenty, 3-4 Circus Parade, New England

Road. Bengali street food available 6pm-10pm,

Wednesday - Sunday

Photo by Lizzie Lower







Yomi’s tomato stew

Yomi Sode performs a show on identity and belonging,

while cooking up a traditional Nigerian stew

My grandmother has died. My mother has

come round to my new flat to tell me that we’re

travelling to Nigeria to go to her burial. She

already knows that I’m not too keen on going

because the last time I was there I didn’t have

the best experience…

I was nine when we moved to England, but I’ve

been raised to think of Nigeria as home. When

I was there, though, that was the last feeling

that I got. I am Nigerian, but I’m also very

much British: I very much have this style, I very

much talk in this way. In Nigeria I was made to

feel very aware of myself and I think it’s natural

for any person who goes into a situation where

they don’t feel wanted or feel welcomed to build

some kind of resentment towards it. It can be a

country, it can be a person’s home, it can even

be work.

My show, COAT, deals with some of these

ideas of displacement, belonging and identity.

I don’t feel that resentment now, far from it,

but there’s a very interesting intergenerational

conversation that comes out of it in terms of

how much we really need to know about the

people who are close to us. I’m a father now

– I’ve got a three year old, soon to be four –

and I’m thinking about what things will be

in his best interest to know, to ensure that he

grows up without any stress or anxiety. Will I

consider not necessarily being as free with the

information as I thought I would? This is what

this battle is about between me and my mum:

on one side, she is protecting me from certain

things, and on the other side, I’m holding

things back from her. So here we are; we love

each other to bits, but we’re hiding things from

each other at the same time.

So my grandmother has died. My mother has

come round to my new flat to tell me that

we’re travelling to Nigeria, and all of these

conversations are coming up. Meanwhile,

I’m preparing this lovely meal for her, a nice

traditional dish from Nigeria, from scratch…

Ingredients*: Oil, 1 tin of plum tomatoes, 1

red sweet pepper/tatashe (chopped), 1 medium

onion (chopped), 2-3 Maggi cubes, 1 chicken

stock cube, thyme, half scotch bonnet pepper/

rodo (optional), fresh garlic (optional), tomato

purée, boiled water.

(*There might be a secret ingredient. You might

have to come to the show to find out what it is.)

Method: Put pepper, onion and Scotch bonnet

into a blender with a little water and blend until

smooth. Heat oil in the pan and boil the kettle.

Carefully add the blended ingredients into your

pan. Use a small amount of water to rinse the

blender and add this to the pan also. Leave it

to fry off for between 5-7 minutes or until it

has settled and pour the plum tomatoes in. Add

your seasonings. Add some purée (depending

on how thick you want it) and add some more

water if desired. Stir all of the ingredients to

ensure that it is mixed well and leave to simmer,

checking on it from time to time. Taste as the

stew is cooking and add more seasoning if

needed. Once all of the oil has risen to the top

(approximately 45-60 minutes), your stew is

ready. As told to Rebecca Cunningham

COAT, Brighton Festival. Brighthelm Centre,

10th & 11th May, 7.30pm, £12.50



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Natural Chef




Three-cheese toastie

With a hint of Terminator 2

It’s not every day you have a toasted cheese sandwich

prepared with a plumber’s blowtorch. And that’s not

the only thing that sets this sandwich apart. This

toastie is made with three cheeses, flame-grilled

cauliflower pieces, cauliflower purée, pickled golden

sultanas and a sprinkling of rosemary. It’s prepared for

me by George Egg, aka the ‘Anarchist Cook’, who’ll

be pitching up with his workbench/test kitchen at

The Warren this month.

George explains the new show, DIY Chef (part

stand-up comedy, part play, part subversive cookery

course and a total sell out at Edinburgh 2017), as

he assembles my sandwich, first heating a metal

Terminator 2 DVD case (“it’s the perfect size for a

toasted sandwich”) with the plumber’s blowtorch.

He then spreads two slices of sourdough with butter

churned by strapping a pot of double cream to a

power sander (“four minutes on full-power should

do it”). The assembled ingredients are melted with

a hot air gun (“it provides a gentler heat than the

blowtorch”) and clamped firmly between the DVD

case covers with long-handled pliers. “It’s all a bit

Wallace and Gromit” shouts George over the roar of

the blowtorch as he blasts the case, before flipping out

the perfectly toasted sandwich with a paint scraper.

I can’t tell if it’s the smoked cheese or the DVD case

that’s giving it the depth of flavour but it’s definitely

more Heston Blumenthal than Heath Robinson. LL

The Warren, 24th and 26th May, 8pm, £10.50-12.

Cutlery will be supplied.


Fringe Special

20% Off

with ticket for any

upcoming show

Edible Updates

First off, welcome to The Ivy, scheduled (as we

go to press) to open on the 2nd. We’re excited

to see that fantastic Grade II-listed building on

Ship Street finally restored and up and running

again. And if you haven’t been along to Circo

by Señor Buddha we’d recommend going on

a ‘Planta Wednesday’: one tapas,

two raciones (slightly bigger)

and a dessert from their

vegetarian/vegan menu for

just £20. Perfect to get you in

the mood for summer.

Open for Lunch and Dinner

10 Manchester Street, Kemptown, Brighton

吀 䠀 䔀 嘀 䔀 䜀 䔀 吀 䄀 刀 䤀 䄀 一 刀 䔀 匀 吀 䄀 唀 刀 䄀 一 吀

On Saturday 12th, the College of

Naturopathic Medicine are holding an open

morning for anyone interested in studying

nutrition or natural therapies. The free event

takes place at Brighton Aldridge Community

Academy, 10.30am-12.30pm. []

Those looking to boost their own

wellbeing might enjoy Josephine

Cobb’s free talk on Nutrition

for Fatigue and Stress,

Thursday 3rd at Brighton

& Hove Therapies on Fleet

Street. []

Finally, Foodies Festival will be pitching their

tents on Hove Lawns from the 5th to the 7th.

There’ll be street food to sample and cocktails

to sip, as well as plenty of piethrowing,

cheese-stretching and

chilli-eating fun. Don’t forget to

check out the new Musicians

Against Homelessness music

stage, featuring Toploader

on the Saturday and The

Hoosiers on the Sunday.







Don’t diss the Yin

St Augustine’s Centre, the magnificent former

church on the corner of Stanford Avenue and

Florence Road, opens its doors this month as a

hub for spirituality and wellbeing. The building

has been divided into a number of units, housing

therapy rooms, workshop spaces and, now, a brand

new yoga studio.

SPACE Yoga Studio is run by partners John and

Catia, who have offered me a free class to get

a taster of what’s on offer. I’ve done a few yoga

classes before, but I don’t know much about the

different types, so John suggests trying Yin Yang,

a combination of slow, restorative ‘Yin’ poses and

more dynamic, strengthening ‘Yang’ movements.

Catia leads the class at 11.30 on a Monday

morning. I find my way up to the studio, which

is on the first floor of a built structure inside the

church. It is a stunning place to do yoga: the

studio itself feels warm and contained, but looking

through the windows you get a sense of the height

and the space outside. I take a place on one of the

mats and wait for the class to begin.

We start by lying on the mats and doing some

breathing exercises, and then it’s into the Yang part

of the session. We work our way through various

different poses at quite a fast pace, with Catia

leading through gentle instruction from the front

of the studio. The movements are challenging but

I can just about keep up. Catia walks around the

room and offers some adjustment when we need

it. Feeling more out of breath than I’ve felt doing

yoga before, I’m relieved when it’s time to move

onto the Yin section.

“Anybody who has told you that the ‘Yin’ is easier,

is lying to you,” Catia says. So it isn’t time for a

break just yet. Each pose is fairly simple, but rather

than moving from one to the next, she explains,

we will hold each for anywhere between three and

five minutes. The challenge is in staying with it

and allowing gravity to push your body deeper into

the stretch. “The Yin allows you to notice which

is giving up first: your body or your mind.” Catia

explains that boredom and frustration are common

during this type of practice, which is encouraging

to hear because I feel them both. It is a very

different challenge to the first half of the class, but

it proves, ultimately, to be immensely satisfying.

The session draws to a close, and on the way out

of the studio I stop to speak to John and Catia

about the other types of yoga they offer. “We divide

the classes into four types: restorative, dynamic,

beginner and experienced,” John explains, “so we

try to offer something for everybody.” If you’ve

been thinking of trying yoga but you’re not sure

which is right for you, they’re offering 30 days of

yoga for £30 – or as part of the Fringe they’ll be

running free yoga classes all day on Saturday 19th.

I’d highly recommend the Yin Yang. Just don’t

underestimate the Yin. Rebecca Cunningham





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Your Place

The people at play

I think one of the best things about the Brighton

Festival is the great number of free events. It’s

like the city is saying, ‘Forget the grind: come

and see the people at play’. Of course, for all

the accessibility there will still be shows that are

beyond the pockets of a great many. Last year’s

Guest Director, Kate Tempest, had this to say on

the matter: ‘The arts should be social, not elitist.

They should be part of our everyday life.’ But she

didn’t just make worthy pronouncements – she

set up the means to ensure the Festival enshrined

these notions.

And so on a grey Monday in early April I take the

bus from Viva Brighton HQ all the way over to

the Hangleton Community Centre, where Brighton

starts to run out and the Downs loom into

view. I’m off to find out about Your Place, a kind of

festival within the Festival, Kate Tempest’s legacy

to those who live on Brighton’s fringes.

Last year Your Place featured a packed programme

including: award-winning poetry slam champion

Tommy Sissons; Appalachian folk artists Anna and

Elizabeth; a new Brighton Festival commission

from Three Score Dance and Ceyda Tanc Youth

Dance company, as well as workshops and performances

from Kate Tempest herself.

I’m curious to know what local people make of

this, of having arty-farty literati types come to

their neighbourhood, and whether the dynamism

of last May has carried through to this May. I

arrive at the community centre just as a planning

meeting is breaking up. Rhianydd Summersett

from Hangleton tells me she’s grateful to all

those artists and performers who are willing

to be involved in Your Place. ‘It’s lovely having

the opportunity to bring all this into the local

Photo by Caitlin Mogridge

community. A lot of local families can’t access

some of the events in Brighton due to the cost of

the ticket’. Rhianydd also mentioned the cost of

getting into town, how for a family of four much

of the Festival would be beyond them.

Jacqui Somers from the Manor in East Brighton

tells me what the Festival’s continued commitment

means to her. ‘We weren’t just dumped.

They’re just very interested in what we’ve got to

say. It’s lovely to be heard and appreciated.’ Last

year she got to meet Kate Tempest. ‘She was sat

on the ground with a couple of her mates. I made

her a cup of tea and that was it. And then she got

up on stage and it was Boom! Boom!’

I ask about events this year. ‘I am looking forward

to the David Shrigley talk,’ says Jacqui. ‘The artist

in residence,’ says Rhianydd, ‘Kate McCoy.’ Then

the conversation takes off in a flow of excited

mentions of other events and artists, The Ragroof

Players, Culture Clash, Joanna Neary. Yes, I think,

as I come away. Boom! Boom! John O’Donoghue

19th - 20th May, Hangleton Community Centre;

26th - 27th May, Manor Gym, East Brighton.




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Photo by Adam Bronkhorst,



Brighton street art

A two-wheeled tour

I think I’m becoming blind to street art.

It probably happens to a lot of people

who live in Brighton. So many of my daily

journeys are spent dashing through the side

streets of North Laine, dodging past groups

of gazing tourists, it’s only when I stop and

look at what they’re gazing at that I see it.

I’m determined to find out more about the

city’s street art scene, so I enlist the help of

long-standing local graffiti artist REQ to

show me some of the best spots. He offers

to bring me and photographer (and street

art enthusiast) Adam Bronkhorst on one of

his tours.

So the following Friday afternoon I meet

Adam at the BTN Bike Share dock by

our office to pick up our rides for the day.

Neither of us has been on one before, so

there’s a bit of pressing of random buttons

to be done before we figure out the system.

It turns out to be incredibly straight-forward

(as long as you can remember your

PIN number).

On first ride the bikes take a bit of getting

used to: the frame is much heavier than a

normal bike, which makes the steering feel

heftier, but you soon adjust. Adam gives

them bonus points for being able to hold

his DSLR safely in the front basket.

We meet REQ (pictured pg 91) in front of

the Icons mural on the side of the Prince

Albert, which he painted (in its second




Photos by Adam Bronkhorst,

incarnation) last autumn. Icons is, of course,

one of the most iconic pieces of street art in

Brighton. He tells us about the special transparent

paints he uses to achieve his almost

photo-realistic portraits, and about some of

the women who helped him paint the piece:

graduates of his Spraypaint Academy for Girls.

But there’s plenty more to see, so we have to

move on.

We zigzag up and down the North Laine,

taking in more stunning pieces by REQ

himself, as well as big local names Sinna One,

SNUB and Minty. I’m a bit wary cycling up

the hills to begin with, given how heavy the

bikes are, but the eight-speed gear system

makes it a breeze. One of my favourite places

he takes us is the carpark at the end of Jew

Street: what had previously seemed like just a

mess of graffiti suddenly becomes a lot more

interesting with REQ there to tell us about

the different artists, where they’ve come from




and the techniques they’ve used.

We finish up on Trafalgar Lane, where there’s

some new street art being made. REQ introduces

us to Mazcan, one of Brighton’s only

female graffiti artists, who is in the middle of

painting a stunning portrait, and then Sinna

One drives past and stops for a chat.

“The tour normally only lasts an hour…” says

REQ. The trip timer on the back of my bike is

reading ‘3hrs 44mins’ so we decide we’d better

call it a day. We say our goodbyes and pedal

back to the bike dock. Even after nearly four

hours, I’m a little disappointed that our tour

had to come to an end. But I guess the best

thing about street art is, if you come back next

week, it will all have changed. RC

To book a street art tour with REQ, visit

To find your nearest BTN Bike Share dock and

download the app, go to

Photos by Adam Bronkhorst,








Extensions, loft conversions, bathrooms,

kitchens, plus much more...

01273 287900 or email





Tel: 01273 562943




Hove Plinth

‘A new cultural landmark’

Walk along the

Kings Esplanade

and at the foot of

Grand Avenue you

will come to Hove

Plinth, our recently

unveiled answer

to the Fourth

Plinth at Trafalgar

Square, and a

nod to Brighton’s

reluctant sobriquet:


By the time this magazine goes to print, the

first sculpture will have been unveiled, towering

2.5 metres above the plinth and casting mesmerising

shadows onto the surrounding promenade as

it moves silently in the breeze coming off the sea.

This is Constellation, by Jonathan Wright, a giant,

3D-printed orrery (or model of the solar system)

that substitutes orbiting planets for examples

of ‘what makes Hove, Hove,’ putting it at the

centre of this metaphorical solar system. The

features have been suggested by local residents

at workshops over the past year and include a

model of one of the pastel painted beach huts

that line Kings Esplanade and frame the plinth

itself, one of our ubiquitous seagulls, and, mysteriously,

‘something first recorded in Sussex in

1150.’ Wright has described the piece as being

‘part made by the local inhabitants and part

made by the location itself.’

Constellation is only a temporary fixture, though.

Much like its equivalent in Trafalgar Square,

Hove Plinth will play host to a rolling line-up of

sculptures, including original works and pieces

on loan from major sculpture foundations. This

is the first step of Hove Civic Society’s plan to

introduce new

public sculpture

to the city. Hove

Plinth will complete

a continuous

‘U’ circuit of

sculpture both

old and new,

running from the

statue of Queen

Victoria further

up Hove’s Grand

Avenue, to the

one in Victoria Gardens, Brighton.

The new plinth stands over two meters tall and

features connectivity technology, allowing for a

more interactive experience, and up-lighting of

the kind that makes the grand appear yet grander.

Funded by donations from local businesses

and residents, this has been the flagship project

of Hove Civic Society since February 2012, and

is intended to remedy the complaint that Hove’s

‘rich culture of Victorian sculpture has had nothing

much added in the last hundred years’.

As well as the public involvement through crowd

funding, the first three sculptures scheduled to

feature on the plinth have been chosen by the

votes of some 1,500 Brighton & Hove residents.

Major pieces will remain on the plinth for 12-18

months, after which time some will be moved to

permanent sites currently being sought around

the city, with others becoming part of a growing

back catalogue of locally relevant sculpture.

Hove Plinth promises to be a cultural landmark

for the city, brought to completion by the people

of Brighton & Hove, for the people of Brighton

& Hove. Hugh Finzel

Artist’s impression of Hove Plinth with ‘Constellation’






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Ed Hughes

A moment in a river’s history

How do you capture landscape in music? For

Lewes composer Ed Hughes, it’s a process that

involves what he sees as much as what he hears.

The colours, contours and edges of the physical

world can all, through Ed’s eyes, be translated into

a musical score.

His latest composition was inspired by one of East

Sussex’s most famous land features. Cuckmere: A

Portrait, a Brighton Festival commission that premieres

this month, is a collaboration between Ed,

who is Head of Music at the University of Sussex,

and acclaimed music documentary filmmaker

Cesca Eaton.

Ed’s live orchestral score and Cesca’s 25-minute

silent film will give audiences a visual and sonic

experience of a year in the life of Cuckmere,

including the Haven, an area of flood plain

between Seaford and Eastbourne where the river

Cuckmere meanders to the English Channel.

“For years I’ve loved walking in that area with

my family,” says Ed. “It’s a place of great beauty

and fragility, which has inspired so many artists.

Its special light, space, shapes and colours were

famously captured by the artist Eric Ravilious in

his 1939 watercolour, Cuckmere Haven.”

It is these qualities that Cesca and aerial cameraman

Fergus Kennedy have captured in her film,

and which Ed has used to create the four musical

movements of his piece to represent autumn,

winter, spring and summer.

“I’m fascinated by how Cesca’s film creates drama

through connecting different views - whether

that’s the meandering of the river, or the flinty cuts

in the chalk landscape, or the gradual curves of the

Downs,” says Ed.

“These all have geometrical, almost rhythmic

aspects, which can translate into shapes in music.

A sinuous pattern in the river could connect to a

weaving motif in a particular instrument, such as a

flute or a glockenspiel. The music and the picture

are creating different languages side by side.”

Ed and Cesca began the project two years ago,

helped with funding from the Arts Council,

and held workshops at local schools, including

BHASVIC and East Sussex Academy of Music, to

encourage young musicians to respond to Cesca’s

film footage.

What makes the project all the more urgent and

poignant are the challenges to the area posed by

rising sea levels and the cost of protecting it, adds

Ed. “This is a portrait of the Cuckmere River

through a year of seasons, but it is also a moment

in its history. The fact that Cuckmere Haven

will change has a powerful effect on us, perhaps

because we long for an experience of beauty that is

somehow permanent.”

The premiere, which will be at the Attenborough

Centre for the Creative Arts at the University of

Sussex on 5th May, will be followed by a discussion

on the future of the environmental movement

between Brighton Pavilion MP Caroline

Lucas and author Tony Juniper, whose new book,

Rainforest, draws on his many years’ experience as

a frontline campaigner.

A second performance, on 6th May, will include

compositions played by schools that took part in

the Cuckmere Project. Jacqui Bealing




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Illustration by Mark Greco




To your health

I’ve reached that age where my local GP has

offered to give me a free health check to see if it’s

worth me making any long-term plans. Next week

I’ve booked in to be weighed, measured and prodded.

Meanwhile the health of Brighton itself can

be monitored by a group of amazing organisms

which, though they’re all around us, largely go

unnoticed: lichens.

Lichens are the Banksys of the natural world, bringing

their anarchic wildlife graffiti into our unnatural

urban landscape, disrupting the dull uniformity

of brickwork and concrete with a dazzling diverse

range of patterns, shapes, textures and colours.

Considering that lichens cover 8% of the land’s

surface it’s amazing that we hardly notice them,

but next time you’re out, stop and look around.

You’ll be overwhelmed – lichens are everywhere.

Luminous yellow and orange crusts radiate

across roofs, walls, benches and fences. The bare

branches and bark of trees are festooned with

green lichen lobes. Even the concrete and the

clay beneath your feet is covered with the white

splodges of lichens which resemble trampled

chewing-gum. Once you start looking, an invisible

world of lichens will materialise and you’ll feel

like grabbing the nearest person by the lapels and,

wild-eyed, yelling: “they’re everywhere – can’t you

see? We’ve been invaded!”

The secret behind their success is that each lichen

is made of two different organisms – a fungus and

an alga. The alga can photosynthesise and provides

the food that fuels the fungus while the fungus

gives the structure and protection which allows

the alga to function. The fungus is the Lennon

to the alga’s McCartney; working together they

create something amazing and enduring.

Because lichens absorb their water and nutrients

through their surface they don’t require roots.

This gives them the freedom to simply anchor

themselves to any firm foundation; rock, wood,

bone, concrete, glass, canvas, metal. They can also

withstand severe desiccation. In periods without

water they simply switch off. When re-hydrated

they spring back to life like the Wicked Witch of

the West in reverse.

This versatility and resilience means lichens can

survive anywhere on our planet – and experiments

have shown they’d probably do alright elsewhere

too. They recently achieved remarkable results in

the Mars Simulation Laboratory and some folk

claim that lichens could be the key to the human

colonisation of the Red Planet. Back on Earth

their reliance on rainwater means that lichens are

famously sensitive to air pollutants dissolved in

rain. The presence or absence of certain lichens is

a good indicator of pollution levels: what’s good

for their health is good for ours, too.

Michael Blencowe, Sussex Wildlife Trust




This picture, printed with kind permission of The

Argus, is of the Brighton Festival Chorus practicing

prior to the Brighton Festival of 1970. It was

taken in the JMS Lecture Theatre at the University

of Sussex on April 18th of that year, and the

chorus are busy rehearsing Bach’s B Minor Mass.

The picture really brings a flavour of the times.

These may have been classically-trained singers,

but judging by the knees of the girls and ladies

in the front row, every one of them is wearing a

mini skirt. There are a couple of priceless hair-dos

on show as well, not least that sported by the

sun-tanned lady in the third row up, who, by dint

of the fact she is the only person looking at the

camera, becomes the punctum of the picture.

The ladies are silent at this point; look at the men

behind and you can see that they are busy singing.

Brighton Festival Chorus was founded two years

before, by Hungarian director Laszlo Heltay, specifically

to participate in the second-ever Brighton

Festival, during which they performed Belshazzar’s

Feast, conducted by the composer of the piece,

William Walton. They have gone on to become

one of the country’s most respected choirs, regularly

performing in London and further afield,

and collaborating with orchestras of the highest

calibre. Guest conductors have included André

Previn and Simon Rattle.

In the 1970 Festival this bunch performed two

concerts at Brighton Dome. Bach’s B Minor Mass

was conducted by the formidable German maestro

Karl Richter on the 9th May; the Chorus sang

in conjunction with the Sussex University Choir,

accompanied by the English Chamber Orchestra.

On the 17th, in the same venue, the then-just-25

Daniel Berenboim – now Music Director of the

Berlin State Opera - conducted the choir, along

with the New Philharmonia Orchestra, performing

two Beethoven pieces, Fantasia and the

spectacularly rousing Symphony No 9.

The modern-day version of the Chorus still

rehearse in the same lecture theatre; this year

sees their 50th birthday, and to celebrate they

are going to reprise their first-ever performance,

with what should be an exuberant rendition of

Belshazzar’s Feast on the 27th, accompanied by

the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, no less, and

conducted by Sir Richard Armstrong. This follows

a performance of Britten’s War Requiem, with Britten

Sinfonia, and the Orchestre de Picardie. Both

take place in the Chorus’ spiritual home, Brighton

Dome Concert Hall. Alex Leith


14–16 JUNE 2018







Performed by some of today’s most exciting musicians









VENUES: Depot Cinema | Trinity Church, St John Sub Castro

St Michael’s Church | All Saints Centre



In a unique double bilL

Part 1 with

Sam Green

live documentary


of Sam Green

and Joe Bini’s

A Thousand




‰ ‰ ‰ ‰ ‰


Part 2 with

Trio da Kali

SUN 20 MAY, 7.30PM | BRIGHTON DOME 01273 709709 #brightOnfestivAl

∏Lenny Gonzalez

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