On February 27th 2016 a brand new festival comes to Brighton which has got our office in a little flurry of excitement.
Taking place in an old church building in central Brighton, the one day event will feature a programme of performances alongside visual artwork, literature and local food and drink.
We caught up with Harvey; one half of the festival producers who gave us the lowdown on what to expect:
What can people expect when they attend the festival?
An afternoon and evening filled with captivating musical performances alongside delicious food and drink from local no-waste projects, all in the stunning yet homely surrounding of Brighton’s One Church venue. In our first conversations about putting Little Way together, the idea of creating an inviting and atmospheric music event at a time of year where there is often a wintery lull was one of the main ambitions. The term ‘music festival’ comes with strong associations, but with Little Way we’re using the word in reference to it’s most basic definition; developing a memorable ‘festive’ atmosphere is what we feel most excited about.
What made you decide on the church venue?
The location is entwined with both the existence and ethos of Little Way. Philippe – the co-founder of the festival – has put on a number of music events at One Church since its development as a community space, and the venue have been kind enough to support and collaborate with us on making Little Way a reality. For instance, Ben Szobody, who is the Projects Development Manager at the venue, has curated a really exciting food and drink programme for the day, which includes drinks from Old Tree Brewery and a pay-as-you-feel meal from the Real Junk Food Project, who already often operate from the building.
This relationship also ties in with the idea of a positive simplicity and resourcefulness that lies at the heart of Little Way; by celebrating existing connections we hope to create a setting in which a load of new introductions can develop – whether that’s to music, projects, or people.
What has been the biggest challenge in organising the festival?
I think, as with anything you endeavour to do for the first time, there has been a real sense of dealing with an unknown quantity. Stepping up from three acts playing over an evening – something that Philippe has organised in the same space a few times before – to fifteen filling a whole day suddenly requires many more elements to be considered and understood. Thankfully we have had the support of some generous and talented friends along the way, and the response from the artists that we have contacted has been phenomenal. Everyone we have approached has been very eager to be involved, and this has made attempting to orchestrate the festival we had imagined all the more possible.
If there is one thing not to be missed at the festival what would it be?
The essence of the festival is that all is rolled in to one, so hopefully if you get your ticket you won’t miss a thing. With everything delivered under one roof, and with only 250 tickets on sale, our hope is that everyone who comes along feels they are a cog in Little Way. While we are humbled to have some amazing acts – some of whom are big personal heroes – performing as part of the day, as well as some excellent artists who have been working on different aspects of the design, I wouldn’t single anyone out.
Do you plan to run more of these events? What do you see changing in the future?
We would definitely like to. In terms of the future, our hope is that Little Way can continue beyond the rigid format of an annual music festival. One of the most exciting experiences in putting the event together has been the ability to bring together artists, projects, and people that we admire and believe in, and we both feel there is scope for this to evolve and take different forms after the 27th February.
The festival will take place at One Church, Gloucester Place; an old church building which has been transformed into an emerging multi-use community centre, an experimental co-work space and an incubator of projects and ideas. On its regular schedule are a homeless night shelter and meal service, a bustling pop-up cafe using only food waste, a barista apprenticeship for unemployed young people, holiday meals for low-income families, cooking sessions for children, office support for an off-site therapeutic farm and a Brighton farmers’ market and jobs academy.
Festival producers Philippe Nash and Harvey Herman said “The basis of Little Way is to develop a music festival that is intentionally simple in form, and has the fostering of new connections and interactions as its focus.
“Held at the tail end of winter, and entirely under one roof, the day is really an opportunity to gather together and deliver something of a shared home to everyone involved, rather than a ‘big name’ spectacle. We want to encourage a sense of a family which can grow and take new forms in the future”
Food and drink will be available from a selection of Brighton outlets including Real Junk Food Project.
Tickets available from www.littleway.co.uk
Price: £15 advance / £20 on the door / Free for U12s (advance only)