Brighton Festival has announced that the guest director for Brighton Festival 2017 is acclaimed recording artist, poet, playwright and novelist Kate Tempest.
Described by the Guardian as “one of the brightest British talents around,” Tempest’s prolific artistic output across multiple disciplines has attracted her considerable acclaim and a unique range of audiences.
At 31, Kate Tempest will be the youngest Brighton Festival Guest Director to date, taking the mantle from pioneering artist and musician Laurie Anderson, who led the 50th Brighton Festival this year. Other previous Guest Directors include visual artist Anish Kapoor (2009), musician Brian Eno (2010) and Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi (2011) who have all taken turns shaping the three-week programme of cultural events.
Andrew Comben, chief executive of Brighton Festival says: “Kate Tempest is uniquely positioned to fulfil the guest director role – her seemingly limitless creativity has led to a body of work that straddles an extraordinary array of art forms and has earned her fans of all ages and from all walks of life.”
In 2016, Brighton Festival celebrated its 50th year of commissioning and producing innovative arts and culture. With a total audience reach of over 225,000, the milestone programme was the most successful in its history with more people engaging with the festival, both as audiences and participants, and more tickets sold than ever before.
The Festival’s biggest talking point was Nutkhut’s Dr Blighty, an ambitious, large-scale, immersive, outdoor experience co-commissioned in partnership with Royal Pavilion & Museums and 14-18 NOW, which highlighted the story of wounded Indian soldiers hospitalised in Brighton during WW1.
Ending each night with a light display using projection-mapping, Dr Blighty set the city and social media abuzz and drew audiences of almost 65,000 over its five day run.
Brighton Festival 2017 – which will take place from 6-28 May 2017 – will feature exclusives, world and UK premieres from a wide range of international, national and local artists and companies.