BE Festival


OK, it feels like crunch time now. Is this City going to allow itself to develop a proper theatre scene or should we just all move to the seaside?

The BE Festival kicks off on 30th June (VERY SOON). It’s @ AE Harris until 3rd July. Each night the Bar opens at 6pm and at 7pm you a series of 30 minute theatre shows starts. There are 15 companies in attendance from across Europe, each with their own show, a cluster of each showing each night. They’re not being paid, they’re there for the love, the glory, a cash prize and a possible commissioning opportunity.

Despite bits of funding from the City Council and the Arts Council this is a seriously Grassroots, Hand-to-Mouth operation. The organizers have 100 tickets to sell each night for £10 each and THEY NEED TO SHIFT THEM.

I genuinely think this is the most exciting theatre event to have happen in Birmingham for as long as I can remember. When do you ever get to see theatre from abroad in this city? How rare is it to see young companies from abroad in the UK outside Edinburgh at festival time? Very Rare. Never. Until now. No one need panic, much of the work is from abroad but you don’t need to be polyglot to enjoy the festival. It’s all visual / non-verbal stuff and they can’t get any local media coverage, which is unfortunately pretty standard. So it’s down to us and word of mouth. LET”S GIVE THESE COMPANIES A PROPER WELCOME. LET”S TURN UP!


One thought on “BE Festival

  1. I think this is really going to be something very special and I am looking forward to it not just as someone who will be invloved but as James says, it brings international work to Brimingham and it will all be hosted in A.E Harris. I am excited by variety of choice, not only theatre and workshops but food and discussions as well.

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