First shows revealed as Ventnor Fringe returns

By IW Galleries Mar 14, 2020

Ventnor Fringe, the multi-award-winning arts festival, which features gigs, comedy and performances in unusual spaces around Ventnor, will return for an 11th edition from July 28 to August 2.

Popular ‘pop-up venues and spaces Harbourside and Parkside will both return, transforming whole areas of the town. Among the first events to be announced are live gigs with Gengahr, who have hit 2020 running with new album ‘Sanctuary’ offering a more expansive and ambitious sound than ever before. Produced by Bombay Bicycle Club’s Jack Steadman, the North London’s alt-pop four-piece have carved a distinctive sound.

Joining them will be Willie J Healey, a young man at top of his game, with his unique blend of dreamy soft pop, garage-rock and 70’s Americana. Following extensive radio play of new single ‘Why You Gotta Do It’ a new album is pencilled for release in the coming months.

Also on the bill is post-punk, art rock, legends in the making, Do Nothing. Fronted by the distinctive presence of Chris Bailey, who channels influences ranging from LCD Soundsystem, The Fall and Talking Heads.

From New Wave to Woodstock, California Dreaming is a live tribute to the rise and fall of the Woodstock generation in a show exploring the 60’s counter culture movement, the Hippies. Featuring songs by The Byrds, Joni Mitchell, Crosby Stiils & Nash, Mamas & Papas, James Taylor and The Doors.

Away from the music spoken word poet Luke Wright brings his new show The Remains of Logan Dankworth to The Magpie, the Fringe’s majestic Big Top in Ventnor Park. Other shows to be confirmed here include a return of Impromptu Shakespeare, the Edinburgh Fringe smash-hit were an entirely new and unique ‘Shakespeare’ play inspired by audience suggestions. Double Edinburgh Comedy Award Nominee Ahir Shah returns to host Pick of the Fringe, showcasing a new selection of fast-rising comics.

For the younger members of the family, a new Sunday Fun Day is being launched, featuring award-winning children’s presenter Andy Day and his Dino Raps Show, alongside street dance workshops, circus skills, soft play and giant games.

Collectively this makes up just over 5% of the full programme yet to be revealed, showing just how far the event has come, in both scope and scale, firmly placing the Isle of Wight on the map.