I Surrender! by Karen Featherstone comes to Lancashire Fringe Festival

Portrait of writer Karen Featherstone by Jonathan Bean (www.beanphoto.co.uk)

Karen Featherstone will debut her play I Surrender! in Preston as part of the new development commissions for Lancashire Fringe Festival.

I Surrender! is a show about vulnerability, how good her dad was at swearing in Welsh and what happened on the worst day of her life.

Karen Featherstone has written plots for Coronation Street and Emmerdale, while her words have been heard at theatres including  Manchester Royal Exchange, Liverpool Everyman, Hampstead Theatre, National Theatre Studio and on Channel 4. She was part of Graeae Theatre’s Write-to-Play programme.

Her previous work includes comedy Careless Sponsored Walks Cost Lives, about an SAS-style elite parent-teacher association, which premiered at London’s National Theatre Studio and in 2015.

BBC Radio Lancashire has broadcast her work in the Laugh Out Loud. She’s won a Northern Writers’ Award for her painful, comic description of a sexless marriage while Jimmy McGovern once wrote her a letter saying her writing was ‘evidence of genuine talent’.

I Surrender! is Karen’s first performance of this intensely personal show. It’s about discovering a new vulnerability since becoming disabled, her dad’s proficiency at swearing in Welsh and how, without meaning to, he was responsible for the worst day of her life.


“Karen Featherstone – definitely a writer to watch out for… Careless Sponsored Walks Cost Lives is a razor-sharp comedy about parents being strong-armed into joining elite parent-teacher groups at the school gates… had everybody laughing out loud.” Female Arts website

“Clever, jocular and painful…” Alison Moore, author.

See I Surrender! by Karen Featherstone at Preston Central Methodist Church, Lune St, Preston PR1 2NL 7.30pm on Friday, May 17.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!


Poetry workshops in the build up to Lancashire Fringe Festival

As part of Lancashire Fringe Festival, Louise Fazackerley is working with three poets – Amy Lee Tempest, Helena Ascough and Richy Integer – who will perform on the opening night of the festival (Weds May 15 at Vinyl Tap).

Louise is also running a FREE poetry workshop in Preston on the afternoon of Weds, May 1 – which anyone can attend. I’m announcing it on here so you lot can get the chance to sign up (there are only seven places available).

Here are the details:

Workshop – Making a Living from Performance Poetry
3pm-4.30pm open workshop (max 7 places).

Suitable for people writing and beginning to perform their own poetry. Louise will help you explore the different avenues available for professional performance poets to make money including performance, writing commissions, teaching and event management.

Contact Louise directly – email: louisethepoet@live.co.uk

Goth Diary – Karina Azlanova at Lancashire Fringe Festival


Goth Diary – Karina Azlanova

Karina Azlanova will perform Goth Diary at Lancashire Fringe Festival.

The Armenian-Ukrainian comic, performance artist and cosplayer developed her observational stand-up o the comedy circuit in the Czech Republic.

Now living in North-west England, Karina brings her acclaimed performance to the Harris Museum on Saturday, May 18.

She  will read excerpts from her gothic teenage diary with humorous insights into the many gothic misadventures immortalised in her writings.

With raw wit and a healthy dose of burning shame, Karina openly discusses such goth plights as existence, love, constipation and seaside holidays with the aim of educating a new generation.

See Goth Diary by Karina Azlanova at Harris Museum, Market Square, Preston PR1 2PP on Saturday, May 18 at 7.55pm.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!

#lancsfringeInstagram:  @azlanova

Fuck You Pay Me by Joana Nastari at Lancashire Fringe Festival


[Photo: Alex Brenner]

TICKETS LINK – Tickets are free for F*ck You Pay Me but you need to register here: https://cutt.ly/ArKE3u
Derelict Mayhem have four shopws on immediately before F8ck You Pay Me in Media factory. These are also free and you book a ticket for all of them here: https://derelictliveblog.wordpress.com/derelict-mayhem/

Brilliant show Fuck You Pay Me is coming to Preston as part of Lancashire Fringe Festival. DO NOT miss this show.

Fuck You Pay Me is the debut play by award-winning artist Joana Nastari.

It was developed with support of Soho Theatre Young Company, Lyric Hammersmith, Rich Mix and development residencies at Wiltons Music Hall and with, Brainchild (AIM Festival Award 2015 and 2016).

In 2018, Fuck You Pay Me had sold out runs at Vault Festival 2018 – where it won a People’s Choice Award – and Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Fuck You Pay Me will run for two weeks at The Bunker Theatre, London in May, 2019. And the show will also be in Preston on Friday, May 24.

I’m delighted to link up with Derelict Live’s Derelict Mayhem festival, who have their own brilliant two days of new performances in Preston on Friday, May 24 and Saturday, May 25. This show will end the first night of their shows – and also mark the end of Lancashire Fringe Festival’s 10 nights.

About FYPM

More often than not, strippers are portrayed in the media as voiceless bodies, statistics or through cheap stereotypes.

Fuck You Pay Me is a no-holds-barred, explosive trip through the world of stripclub culture, telling a story often left out of public conversations surrounding sex work.

As Bea navigates the politics of the strip club, she explores stigma, shame and sisterhood, and discovers a little more about herself.

Writer and performer Joana Nastari says: “Even within social groups, there is still no topic that divides people like sex work does. I think this is because there’s so much to unpick in our cultural and social relationships to both sex and work. People either want to hear a scandalous tell-all about ‘happy hookers’ or a tragedy-porn sob story.

“I want my show to transcend these binary preconceptions about sex work and keep the audience on their toes.”

Joana Nastari is a Brazilian-British actor, poet, writer and organizer of events for the queer, Latin and sex worker communities. Joana is currently Associate Artist at Oval House Theatre.

She makes cross-form work about sex work, psychedelic drugs and matriarchal Brazilian families.

Joana has worked with, Sean Holmes, Steve Marmion, Simon Stephens, Roy Alexander Weise, Stef O’ Driscol, at The Pleasance, Lyric Hammersmith, Soho Theatre and the The Yard.

See Fuck You pay Me by Joana Nastari at Media Factory, University of Central Lancashire, at 8.15pm on Friday, May 24.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!


Show trailer: https://youtu.be/kyyXX85fs_g
Twitter: @fypmshow

Wandering Poet Tour part of Lancashire Fringe Festival

All dates final poster.jpg

The Woolly Hat Poet will be part of Lancashire Fringe Festival as he stops off on his own 12-date tour to perform in Preston.

Lancaster-based Benjamin Guilfoyle is walking 125 miles taking in 12 venues as part of his wandering Poet tour between Lancaster and Brighouse.

He will be joined on stage at Vinyl Tap, Preston by Lyndsay Price, Flora Martyr, Rikin Parekh and Lorna Smithers. The show starts at 7pm on Thursday, May 23.

And there will be a special appeal by Benjamin on the night – when he asks someone in the audience to put him up for the night.

But audiences on the 12-date tour are in for a shock – because he will make an on-stage appeal every performance for one of them to give him a bed for the night.

Benjamin is raising money for two charities – the Lancaster and District Homeless Action Service and the Lancaster Children’s Library – with every penny from ticket sales and donations while on the tour donated to the charities.

And to raise awareness of the issue of homelessness, the poet will have nowhere to stay each night of his tour – that’s why he will be asking you for a bed for the night.

Benjamin said: “The Wandering Poet tour is all about being kind and doing something for others to make their day a little bit brighter. I want to be able to use my poetry and this tour to make a difference, however small, and to support these two local charities because without support they might not be around that much longer.

“My poetry comes from a place of happiness. I use my poems to tell stories and to focus on the smaller things in life that we might overlook and those small victories that get us through our everyday lives.

“I hope I will make my audiences laugh and there will be at least one poem in the show that they can relate to on a personal level.”

The performance poet – know as The Woolly Hat Poet – heads out on the road in May for a gruelling 12-date tour, taking in Lancaster, Garstang, Preston, Wigan, Bolton, Prestwich, Salford, Oldham, Littleborough, Hebden Bridge, Halifax and finally his home-town of Brighouse on consecutive nights.

The Wandering Poet Tour is inspired by Yorkshire’s own Simon Armitage and his Coast to Coast walk in 2015.

Each show Benjamin will be joined by local poetic talent, musicians and artists to give each show a local voice.

Guests in Preston
Lyndsay Price:
Lyndsay Price is a Spoken Word Artist with an interest in how art can be used as a tool to ignite social change. With a previous background in theatre; Lyndsay melds together her knowledge and artistry to create dynamic performances, events and projects that cater from beginner all the way up to acclaimed performer. Lyndsay is inspired by the things that make us human; she writes mainly about: friendship, sexuality, sisterhood, nature, self-improvement, 90’s movies, and vulnerability. She is a drama school graduate, previous creative resident at mac birmingham and a National Youth Theatre of GB alumni.

“She shines a light of creativity, awakening and inspiring many to get into poetry as reader, audience, writer and/or performer.” – Paul Pyke, Poet

Flora Martyr:
Flora Martyr is one quarter performance poet, one quarter animator, one quarter photographer and one quarter tenpin bowler, based in Preston, Lancashire. She has performed at various poetry nights and open mics around the UK and was once the host of now no-longer Korova Poetry evenings. She writes about love, contemporary life and typefaces.

Rikin Parekh:
Rikin Parekh is a spoken word artist from Preston. He has performed at Chorley Literary Festival and has headlined Damson Poets, Preston’s monthly poetry night. Rikin also recently delivered a set at Gullivers Pub in Manchester for Brainwaves, a night of music and poetry in aid of the mental health charity Mind.

The tour kicks off on May 21 in Lancaster and will run each day until June 1.

See The Wandering Poet Tour by Benjamin Guilfoyle at Vinyl Tap from 7pm on Thursday, May 23.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show – with all money going to charity. No tickets required. Just turn up!


Website: https://woollyhatpoems.wordpress.com/
Twitter: @woollyhatpoems


Lancashire Briefs: Monologues at Lancashire Fringe Festival over two nights

Lancashire People’s Theatre in partnership with members of Just Write presents ‘Lancashire Briefs’. Two evenings of short monologues about Lancashire life. Written and performed by Lancashire-based actors and writers.

A new Lancashire-based theatre company will debut their first original pieces of work at Lancashire Fringe Festival.

Lancashire People’s Theatre have brought together over a dozen writers,  and paired them with professional actors to produce a series of monologues which will be performed over two days during the festival.

The monologues will feature hugely diverse topics and subject matter, all performed by actors with a wide range of experience and credits in TV, film and stage.

The teams have been meeting weekly since the start of March to develop their monologues ready for the two festival dates.

Neil Procter, who launched Lancashire People’s Theatre with wife Anthea Carpenter Procter, said: “We have been working hard alongside members of Preston-based writing group Just Write to devise five-minute monologues. They have paired up the writers with professional across who are based across Lancashire.”It’s quite a unique project as there was one stipulation – everyone involved had to be based or come from.

“The project sees amateur writers get to see their work critiqued by a profession director and professional actors. Once the writing was at its optimum the directors and actors set about creating short theatrical pieces whilst the writers watched their words come to life.”

Anthea Carpenter Procter directed the hugely successful Preston Passion Play, staged across the city in 2017, which also starred Neil as Jesus.

Each event will last just over an hour and will follow the festival’s Pay What You Decide model – but with all money raised going to art group The Art Bureau which recently saw it’s premises at the former St John’s Church in Blackburn destroyed by fire.

See Lancashire Briefs: Monologues by Lancashire People’s Theatre Stanley Arms, 24 Lancaster Road, Preston PR1 1DA on Thursday, May 16, at 7.30pm and Tuesday, May 21 at 7.30pm.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!


Twitter: @lancashirepeop1

Louise Orwin’s Oh Yes Oh No comes to Lancashire Fringe Festival

oh yes with text

A playful, provocative journey through female sexuality and who gets to have a say in it, featuring Barbie’n’Ken role-play, a heady mix of pop culture references and dramatic sound design. Conceived, written and performed by Louise Orwin.

“Bold, brave work, and all the better for being filled with the voices of real women who, by speaking out, are staking a claim for their own erotic agency” The Guardian

And it’s part of Lancashire Fringe Festival. I know, I can hardly believe it either.

Made exclusively with the candid input of those willing to talk openly and honestly about their sex life, Oh Yes Oh No explores having sexual fantasies that don’t align with your politics.

Asking difficult questions about sexuality, Oh Yes Oh No interrogates identity, consent and power play, encouraging audiences to rethink their views on desire. Daring to speak about a subject which is rarely addressed publicly, especially in the wake of #MeToo, Oh Yes Oh No is for anyone who has ever struggled to find their sexual voice, or questioned the sexual culture they were brought up in.

Louise Orwin said of Oh Yes Oh No: “I am a survivor of sexual violence and I am obsessed with sex. Why does it feel like those two things shouldn’t exist in the same sentence? Oh Yes Oh No began its journey when I began to attempt to untangle these things from one another, in an effort to reclaim my sexuality for myself once and for all.

“I wanted to understand my desire, its complexities, the politics of being turned on by things that were possibly at odds with my politics. And I wanted to know whether other people had the same sort of neuroses surrounding their orgasms.

“The show is based on interviews I conducted all over the UK with those willing to openly and frankly discuss their sexuality and, in particular, with survivors of sexual violence. In it I ask what the price may be of living in a climate which prizes heteronormative desire and pornified punish-fucking, and what we can do to begin to own our turn-ons and celebrate them.

“Making the show in the tidal wave of #MeToo, I began feeling that, more than ever, those of us who have struggled with our sexuality have a responsibility and even a duty to be reclaiming our lives and bodies for ourselves. Oh Yes Oh No is playful, dark and very, very real.

“By putting the voices and stories of those who have never had a say in their own desire centre stage, it is a sucker punch to the gut, and a battle cry to uncovering the true power of asking for what you want.”

Louise Orwin is an award-winning writer, researcher and performance maker. She makes research-driven theatre projects about subjects that are close to home, hard to get your head around, and need to be spoken about.

She makes work about what it means to identify as female today, in a fast-moving, media-saturated world that prizes patriarchal, heteronormative narratives. Louise likes to make work that is provocative and brash, intimate, awkward at times, and generally filled with a heady dose of pop culture.

Her work has received great critical acclaim. Pretty Ugly, which delved into how teenage girls interact with the internet today, caused a bit of a media stir in 2014 as it went viral, and was featured national and international press all over the world: on the radio (Woman’s Hour, BBCR4), TV (Fusion News, ABC, US), and broadsheet press (Vogue, The Telegraph, The Independent, El Pais etc).

A Girl and A Gun, which explored women and violence on film, has been featured in The Guardian, Vice Magazine, and on the BBC Radio. She has toured work throughout the UK and Europe.

See Oh Yes Oh No by Louise Orwin at The Continental, South Meadow Lane, Preston PR1 8JP on Sunday, May 19, at 7.30pm.

Age Guidance 16+

Trigger Warning: Show contains description of sexual violence


Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!


Website: http://louiseorwin.com/
Twitter: @louiseorwin

From The Message Boards by Dan de la Motte at Lancashire Fringe Festival

dan de le motte (Natalie Mitchell 2)

Who doesn’t love a good comedy-lecture about the Royal Family and Daily Mail message board comments?

Lancashire Fringe Festival is proud to present From The Message Boards by Dan de la Motte.

When everything else in the world seems so uncertain, there’s only one news story that remains constant: the media’s infatuation with the Royal Family.

The show will be staged at the Harris Museum on Saturday May 18, starting at 7pm.

Dan picks this apart in an interactive comedy lecture which gets to the nub of what drives people to make the most banal, irrelevant, or downright weird, anonymous comments on the Mail Online message board.

In this interactive comedy piece, Dan picks apart our Royal family, and the Mail’s infatuation and fascination with them, through the Queer lens, as well as an exploration of what drives people to make the most weird, aggressive, or worse, banal comments anonymously on a message board.

Dan de la Motte is a comedian, performer and curator. As part of the Arcola Queer Collective, he was part of They, Them, We, Us, at the Arcola Theatre in April, and performs as part of the Soho Theatre Comedy Lab+.

Dan is a tour guide and host for Queer Tours of London, and a Resident Artist at Greenwich and Lewisham Young People’s Theatre, where he performed a version of this show in January. Dan is the voice of Off Book, the Young Vic Podcast.

See From The Message Boards by Dan de la Motte at Harris Museum, Market Square, Preston PR1 2PP at 7pm.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!

Twitter: @Dandelamotte

Natalie Wardle’s Control Pant Symphony at Lancashire Fringe Festival


Love a bit of live art, me. And I’ve got this lovely, engaging, funny piece about beauty standards and body positivity by Natalie Wardle in Lancashire Fringe Festival.

Control Pant Symphony is a performance which looks at how women constrict their bodies to fit in with society’s ideal body types, exploring shape wear and tape that is placed over nipples to both cover and repress their form.

It’ll be amazing to see the work performed in the historic, beautiful space of Preston’s Harris Museum.

Natalie is a performance and visual artist from Manchester who has been selected to work with Random Acts North (Tyneside Cinema, True North, HOME) to develop Control Pant Symphony.

Her work has been seen on Channel 4’s Random Acts and at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London. And this performance is part of developing her work into live-art performance, which has been performed at HOME (Manchester), Word of Warning – hÅb events, Live Art Bistro (Leeds) and is scheduled to perform at Camden’s People Theatre (London) in June.

See Control Pant Symphony by Natalie Wardle at Harris Museum, Market Square, Preston PR1 2PP  on Saturday May 18, at 7.45pm.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!


Website: www.nataliewardle.com
Twitter: @nashywardle

A Rock N Roll Suicide! – Lee Mark Jones at Lancashire Fringe Festival

A Rock N Roll Suicide poster & flyer

Lee Mark Jones’ outrageous performance A Rock N Roll Suicide! is ready to rock Preston as part of  Lancashire Fringe Festival.

The in-your-face performance – which has had amazing reviews from a stint at Edinburgh Fringe -will play at Preston’s leading music venue The Ferret on Monday, May 20.

It’s a Ziggy Stardust-inspired tragical tour through the life of a nearly-rockstar, where darkness meets anarchy against a live music and video backdrop.

The show follows the bizarre life choices of Mark’s character, backed by a line-up of legendary music references including Lemmy, Slash, Axl, Blondie, Joey Ramone and Joan Jett.

The Theatre of the Wild, Beautiful and Damned specialises in chaotic and surreal contemporary theatre and performance, as a response to surrealism becoming mainstream.

Lee said: “I intend to attract a new kind of audience which does not usually go to the theatre; an audience craving strange journeys of darkness, horror, suspense, and wonder. All these thrills we will provoke into life, in the flesh, breathing and bleeding on stage, and right in your face.”

Good reviews:
“I love Lee, he’s dangerous and doesn’t give a f**k and I love that.” Chris Thorpe

“Among the most blisteringly bold theatre I’ve seen at this year’s Fringe. Regardless of whether you love it or hate it, one thing is certain: you will never forget it.” Miles Jackson EDFringe review 2018 ****

“It also has the gloriously anarchic edginess of the likes of ‘The Young Ones’ and ‘The Mighty Boosh’, while still absolutely creating its own persona. This is gloriously silly, wonderfully twisted, and from the mind of a very clever ‘boy’. We absolutely loved it. More please!” The Write Angle, Max Lantone

“Bold artistic instincts and vision.” Pippa Frith, Fierce Festival Producer.

Bad review:

“The show’s singular highlight was when Jones, dressed as Jesus, offered audience members the Holy Eucharist consisting of Monster Munch and cheap red wine? Take this advice literally and avoid this nightmare at all costs.” Lauren James EDFringe 2018 review  *

See A Rock N Roll Suicide! by Lee mark Jones at The Ferret, 55 Fylde Rd, Preston PR1 2XQ on Monday, May 20 at 8pm.

Lancashire Fringe Festival is a FREE event. The festival operates a Pay What You Decide model, where audiences can make an optional donation after the show. No tickets required. Just turn up!


Website: http://theatreofthewildbeautifulanddamned.co.uk/
Twitter: @TheatreDamned