Summer has arrived just in time with the surprise announcement that the National Theatre’s Watch This Space festival will return next month to present a pop-up mini version of the annual event.
Watch The Space Presents…August Outdoors, presented in partnership with American Express, will run from 2 to 31 August and offer the festival’s usual eclectic mix of music, dance and children’s theatre in the now smaller than usual space outside the iconic Southbank arts venue, with the free al fresco action nestling in between the main building and this summer’s other pop-up offering, The Shed.
Whether you fancy a retro hairstyle or listening to percussion made from recycled rubbish, August Outdoors has a wide array of entertainment on offer for summer audiences, including the National Theatre Company’s very own offering, Pigeon Poo People (10 August), which asks the riddlesome question are they bird-like people or people-like birds?
Music fans can indulge their passion with Half Human Theatre’s The Sneakers And The Streetlights (2 and 3 August), with foot-stomping renditions of rock ‘n’ roll classics as you’ve never heard them before, or join Bang On! in its banging on 23 August as the show redefines the parameters of what can be called an instrument in this rhythmic treat.
Joli Vyann’s H2H will bring circus back to the square on 9 August, fusing the physical art with dance and theatre, while a carnival with a transport twist will arrive on 24 August when The Bone Ensemble’s Caravania! invites children aged five to 11-years-old to enter its caravan or micro-nation of Upper Caravania to play on the beach or journey to space.
Caravans remain a running theme later in the month when The Caravan Gallery offers a glimpse of Britain and our peculiar ways before Ella Good and Nicki Kent arrive to offer interactive musical hairstyling experiences on 31 August in the moving home.
If interaction appeals, but you’d rather not choose from the Kate Bush Bush to the 80s Power Mullet Montage, the August Outdoors festival will also be offering audience members the chance to become a puppeteer or a spectator in Laitrum’s Capses (16 and 17 August), which uses headphones to offer both participants a magical theatrical experience.
Amongst the other many highlights are Stuff & Things’ The Thinker (3 August), the chance to create a giant artwork in the square with Urban Canvas (10 August), Kazzum Theatre’s intriguing Curious Curios (31 August) and bird dating tale The Preeners (31 August).
For full information about the festival, visit www.nationaltheatre.org.uk/augustoutdoors