Theatre News

Line-up for the National Theatre's River Stage festival announced

The free arts festival returns to the National Theatre this summer

The line-up for this year's River Stage Festival at the National Theatre has been announced.

Free to the public, River Stage takes place throughout the summer and sees different arts and culture organisations take over the festival one weekend at a time. This year, WhatsOnStage is the festival's media partner.

As previously announced, this year's organisations will be The Glory (28 to 30 July), HOME Manchester (4 to 6 August), World of Music, Arts and Dance (WOMAD) (11 to 13 August), Rambert (18 to 20 August) and the National (25 to 28 August). This year, WhatsOnStage is the festival's media partner.

The festival kicks off with a takeover by East End cabaret venue The Glory. Their programme will include works-in-progress such as The Big Gay Songbook, as well as drag life drawing and the venue will recreate some of the their renowned party nights.

Manchester arts centre HOME will then bring an array of performances to London. They include 'sequin-clad satirical weirdos' Bourgeois and Maurice who will perform their witty, topical songs, dance from Boy Blue’s Young Companies, and performances from Chichester-based Bootworks Theatre.

WOMAD, the annual world festival which takes place in Charlton Park, will showcase a number of global acts. Dancer-choreographer Ripton Lindsay will hold a family Jamaican dance class, UK beatboxing champion Grace Savage will hold a vocal workshop, and The Bollywood Brass Band will perform traditional Bollywood and Indian music.

Contemporary dance company Rambert will bring their dancers, artists and musicians to the festival, as well as their youth and older dancer groups. The evenings will showcase the company's work, with a number of classes taking place on the Saturday and Sunday, including yoga, contemporary and a chance to learn the moves from the iconic Christopher Bruce work Ghost Dances.

The event ends with the National's takeover, which will include performances from theatre musicians Benji and Will Bower, Goblin's new show Peter and the Wolf, and an outdoor screening of Twelfth Night starring Tamsin Greig.

London's night czar Amy Lamé said: "In the summer months the South Bank really comes alive with Londoners and visitors enjoying fantastic restaurants, market stalls and street theatre.

"The return of the River Stage adds to the buzz with an incredible season of free outdoor entertainment."

Artistic director of the National Theatre Rufus Norris said: "I’m delighted that this range of partners from across the country have decided to join us this year, and the assortment of performance, music, dance and workshops free for all ages is a vibrant and vital part of the National Theatre programme this summer."

For more information on the River Stage Festival, click here to go to the National Theatre website.