Latitude festival will be 'magical'

VIDEO The organisers of Suffolk's Latitude festival are confident of making it a hat-trick of successful events next month, packed with “magical” music and “phenomenal” theatre.

Mark Lord

THE organisers of Suffolk's Latitude festival are confident of making it a hat-trick of successful events next month, packed with “magical” music and “phenomenal” theatre.

At a press day for the event held this afternoon, festival director Melvin Benn said that “Latitude is more than just a music festival - it is a cultural event”.

The many-faceted festival will be back in the grounds of Henham Park near Southwold between July 17 and 20 and already 25,000 tickets have been sold, with only limited day tickets left for Friday and Sunday.

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Headlining this year's main music arena will be Icelandic group Sigur Ros, Franz Ferdinand and Interpol.

Mr Benn said: “Sigur Ros is perfect for Latitude, not a word will be song in English but their performance will be magical.”

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He added that another musical act playing this year's festival which perfectly fits Latitude's ethos is harpist and singer songwriter Joanna Newsom, who will be the opening act on Sunday.

“She has serenity and will be the perfect start to Sunday - just her and her harp,” said Mr Benn.

Over in the tented Uncut arena, which plays host to some of the best in eclectic and leftfield bands and artists, will be the likes of Amadou and Mariam , The Tinderstick s and Mars Volta .

Blondie will also be playing the Uncut arena on Sunday night.

The Lake stage is described as a stage of “discovery and enchantment which showcases new talent.” Appearing on this stage will be Suffolk boys Cheeky Cheeky and the Nosebleeds.

But Latitude is not just about music - every aspect of culture from poetry to dance has been catered for.

The festival's arts programmer Tania Harrison said: “At Latitude the audience can get the chance to sample the whole plethora of arts, enjoying artists' work that they already know and also discover a whole new world of artists, actors, poets, writers, film makers, not to mention dance moves that they've never seen done before.

“The theatre will be phenomenal - you could not go to London and see everything we have got here. I can hardly contain my excitement about the dance, not just because it is a first for this year, but because it is the world class Sadler's Wells.”

She added other highlights include authors Iain Banks and Irvine Welsh in the Literary Arena; while poets John Hegley and Carol Ann Duffy will be among those taking the stage in the Poetry Arena.

Among the comic treats in the comedy arena will be Bill Bailey, Ross Noble and Simon Porter; while film fans will be catered for by compere Mark Lamarr.

Theatre and cabaret round off the vast array of arts covered at the festival, which will also offer a wide variety of children's events as organisers expect more than 3,000 youngsters to attend the event.

Following in the eco-friendly footsteps of the festival's recyclable beer cups, Latitude's organisers have teamed up with London-based Arcola Theatre and as such the Theatre Arena will be powered entirely by hydrogen fuel cells, which produce nothing but electricity and water.

The festival is being sponsored by Pimms, Uncut and Tuborg, and new for this year will be a Pimms bar in an old Routemaster bus and an island in the lake serving Pimms to just two festival-goers at a time.

For more information about tickets call the box office on 08700 603775 or visit

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