Further cementing its status as the festival with a little something for everybody, Electric Picnic’s more studious side comes out in MindField, with the programme for 2016 looking particularly compelling. Having been “inspired by the themes that have emerged from Ireland’s remarkable 1916 centenary commemorations and in the context of growing international turmoil”, this year’s MindField at Electric Picnic will focus on a forward-thinking Ireland, its citizens and its relationship with the world beyond.
Expect debate, comedy, poetry, speeches, philosophy, science, theatre, literature and much more all set among the woodland of the MindField arena.
Here’s a bit of a breakdown of the stages and what’s happening:
Leviathian: Political Cabaret will feature daily live satirical news broadcasts from the Waterford Whispers News crew; the popular Soundings: Podcast, hosted by award-winning comedy writer, Sharon Horgan and Dylan Haskins with Aisling Bea and special guests.
History Ireland Hedge School will ask whether the Battle of the Somme was a heroic sacrifice or senseless slaughter and explores festivals from the Feast of Uisneach to Electric Picnic and what makes humans need to gather and get a bit tipsy.
THE THEATRE STAGE is presented in partnership with Dublin Theatre Festival and features:
Bewley’s Cafe Theatre and the Delmaine String Quartet’s Love and War: Words and Music from the Western Front, with Michael James Ford, Susannah De Wrixon, Elliot Moriarty and the Delmaine String Quartet.
Always Alone Together is a thrilling feat of solo storytelling in which writer-performer Cathal McGuire draws these disparate threads together into a sweeping, cinematic narrative of friendship, betrayal and the search for belonging.
From Eden is a new play by Stephen Jones, directed by Karl Shiels and starring Stephen Jones and Seána Kerslake. (Winner of the Stewart Parker Trust/BBC Radio Drama Award)
THE WORD: POETRY AND SLAM
Fierce and gentle words, slam poetry, storytelling, music, rap and unselfconscious thoughts all make up the incredible Word programme which this year includes Mik Artistik, Mary Coughlan, Backroad Smokers Club, Brownbread Mixtape, Candlelit Tales, Gary Dunne, Fallen Lights, Kalle Ryan, Graham Sweeney, John Conneely, New Valley Wolves, The Resurrection, Stone and Jezreel, John Cummins and Mademoiselle K – all hosted by the inimitable Marty Mulligan from Mullingar.
AN PUBALL GAEILGE
Bígí linn for a bigger than ever celebration of all that is wonderful about the Irish language in all it’s weird and beautiful forms. Highlights include Tara Mooney – Seamstress and songstress from Contae An Chláir; Na Gaibairí– Rap has been adopted as the urban lyrical medium in almost every country in the world and the Gaels of Éire have also been thus inspired. The Word up Collective present Mc Mupéid – Conemara Native with the words spilling oout of him like milk from a cow; Anti One – Growing up in Dublin on punk and rap in equal measure, Anti-One approaches hip-hop in true DIY punk fashion.
Of course, this is just a snapshot of what to expect from the MindField arena come September, so go here to find out more and have a good planning session.