To those in the know, the brilliant Latitude Festival is fast becoming an essential weekend in the theatre year: a rare opportunity to overdose on high culture in a field full of painted sheep, and a brilliant mix of smaller shows about to go up to Edinburgh and more established theatres letting their hair down for special performances. So by all means get sloshed and teary to Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. But do these first.
Ring/Fiction - Little House
If you want your mind totally blown – and not always in a way you’ll enjoy – then head down to the Little House for David Rosenberg and Glenn Neath’s duo of fuck-with-your-brain headphones pieces, that take place in total pitch darkness. Blackly (boom–tsk) comic and totally disorientating, they’re certainly an escape from the daily festival grind, though you’ll probably need about five pints and a lie down afterwards.
Kneehigh: 946 - Theatre tent
Cornwall’s beloved Kneehigh are the biggest name at Latitude this year, with a work-in-progress of new show ‘946’, potentially months if not years before London gets to see it. The show is an adaptation of Michael Morpurgo’s ‘The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips’, a wartime romance about a missing cat that should be dispatched in Kneehigh’s lavishly quirky style.
Forest Fringe’s Poundshop of Earthly Delights - Faraway Forest
Always spreading whimsical mischief, plucky live art scamps Forest Fringe are a long-term fixture at Latitude, and this year’s contribution sounds like a right hoot: a series of unpredictable, ever-changing experimental theatre encounters in a small tent in the delightful Faraway Forest.
Bryony Kimmings & Tim Grayburn: Fake It Till You Make It - Theatre tent
Bryony Kimmings has carved out a big name for herself over the last few years with a series of madly whimsical shows about everything from STDs to the link between creativity and booze to the lack of suitable role models for tweenage girls. This year she’s enlisted her boyfriend Tim for a show – heading to Edinburgh – about male depression, and while that sounds a touch grim, expect it to be a provocative, slightly loopy romp through the pitfalls of the human brain.
Chris Goode & Company: Stand - Theatre tent
The eclectic oeuvre of cult theatre maker Chris Goode is always worth a good look. ‘Stand’ is a series of true stories of everyday courage, related by a cast of six. Obviously that potentially sounds a touch cheesy, but that’s not Goode’s bag, and it’s billed as a charged and political show about what it takes to make a difference. Which is probably more than you’ll get from Noel Gallagher.
Latitude 2015 takes place July 16-19. Tickets are available here.