Biennial festival Fierce programme announced

One of the UK’s most respected festivals Fierce has announced the full programme for this year’s festival, the second edition under Artistic Director Aaron Wright.

From 15th-2oth October, Birmingham will be bursting with vibrancy with 27 various performances and more than 50 events – including 14 UK premieres and two world premieres that will showcase work from more than 35 artists.

The festival grasps dance, theatre, music, installations, activism, digital practises and parties. Fierce will fill Birmingham with performances in galleries, theatres and out-of-the-ordinary spaces exploring themes such as identity politics and the body, out current political and ecological crisis, queerness and club culture. 

To open the 2019 festival, Fierce will bring their opening night extravaganza ‘A Very Grand Opening’ to Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery on 16 October. The evening will be hosted by drag performer Ginny Lemon and will feature performances from artists like Lester Arias, Sandra Johnston, Keijaun Thomas, and choreographers Zander Porter, James Batchelor, Whiskey Chow and Susannah Hewlett. The festival’s Club Fierce returns on 19th October, an infamous late-night party featuring live music, pop-up performances and a headline DJ set from Corin.

Fierce will also be providing an international platform for a new generation to make their debuts.

Joseph Keckler, an alternative opera and cabaret star from New York will make his UK debut, performing an intimate evening of his work in concert form with ecstatic art-pop songs and wild arias about daily life that spiral out of the mythic on 18th and 19th October at Birmingham Hippodrome.

Visual artist Miet Warlop from Belgium will also make her main stage UK debut with ‘Ghost Writer’ and ‘The Broken Hand Break’, in which Miet works with a western take on the whirling dance, a form of physical meditation to explore how we can find balance between self-control and devotion.

Life Live Lucy McCormick
Credit: Holly Revell

Established artists will also return to the festival such as Tania El Khoury and Lucy McCormick.

Tania will premiere The Search for Power, following the overwhelming response to her 2014 commission Gardens Speak. Tania’s new work is a meal-based-meditation on power and political corruption and was commission with prize money after winning the Anti Festival International Prize for live art last year.

Following her celebrated show, Triple Threat, Lucy is back with Life:Live! which is a pop concert performed and written by Lucy and her electo-trash GirlSquad with special effects.

“Fierce 2019 is coming, and we reckon we’ve put together the most disruptive and joyous programme of performing arts you’ll find in the UK this year. In 2019, more than ever, we need propositions not opposition. The Fierce Festival 2019 programme is full of artists living as if the revolution has happened, all of them making propositions… naughty, joyous, sexy ones at that. We’d love to see you in Birmingham this October,” said Aaron Wright.

Fierce believes that live art is the ‘engine room’ of our culture. It is a space where new performance ideas find a form of expression in order to create provocative and inspiring moments for audiences in the West Midlands. The festival is committed to support unusual, overlooked and difficult live art practises  from around the world, inviting visionary artists interested in ‘liveness’ to work in Birmingham.

Fierce 2019 will take place across Birmingham and the surrounding area from 15 – 20 October with events taking place at: Birmingham Conservatoire, Birmingham Hippodrome, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, Birmingham Repertory Theatre and many more.
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