Festival on the Square is a two-week outdoor festival running from Monday 16 - Monday 30 August as part of Sheffield’s ‘Summer in the Outdoor City’ campaign. Artists programmed by us will perform over the weekend from Friday 27 – Sunday 29 August. The acts run alongside live art installations, film screenings curated by the Showroom Cinema, live music and interactive workshops.
The schedule of performers is:
SheBeKeKe Fri 27 Aug 21, 8pm
archipelago Fri 27 Aug 21, 8.45pm
Hassun El Zafar Sat 28 Aug 21, 11am
Sid Bowfin Sat 28 Aug 21, 12pm
Beasthouse Sat 28 Aug 21, 1pm
Genevieve Carver Sat 28 Aug 21, 2pm
Heaven's Gate Sat 28 Aug 21, 3pm
Sarah Jay Hawley Sat 28 Aug 21, 8pm
Sounds Queer Sat 28 Aug 21, 9pm
Sid Bowfin Sun 29 Aug 21, 11am
Caro Sparks Sun 29 Aug 21, 12pm
Beatmotion Sun 29 Aug 21, 1pm
Comedy Waiters Sun 29 Aug 21, 2pm
Doorstep Dances Sun 29 Aug 21, 3pm
Find out more about the performers
SheBeKeke likes to turn her poems into songs. Previous works, Moonwhile and Abecedarian, showcase a mixture poetry and sound. Not all words can live on the page. Someone called her sound “gospel folk” once but she isn’t too sure if she agrees. She has supported artists such as Kae Tempest, The Last Poets, Saul Williams and OSHUN. Her work has been presented at high profile venues and platforms such as Tate Modern, Blue Dot Festival and Glastonbury’s Rum Shack Stage.
archipelago is an artist-led theatre collective led by Beth Knight and Laurence Young that makes work about themes of epic proportions whilst looking at a local, community, personal level. Their work crosses genres, forms, and styles, but is united under the banner of live, daring, and generous work that brings people together. Made with communities, for communities.
Hassun El Zafar
What is This Thing Called Science? is a immersive street show on the wonders and possibilities that science presents to our lives and beyond. From the power of chemical fuels, colourless gases and ancient magic, this show promise the ignite curiosity into the infinite possibilities of the universe.
Sid Bowfin is the creation of performer-musician, Adrian Garratt. A world class violinist and clown, his classical comedy acts have been seen by audiences all over the world, at events ranging from corporate dinners and private parties to international arts festivals in Edinburgh and Adelaide. He combines classical music and comedy in a completely unique way, part recital, part stand-up comedy, part clown routine. And he’s a master of improvisation – no two shows are ever the same. It’s the funniest and most ridiculous concert you’ll ever see!
BEASTHOUSE is a theatrical production company created by Lewis Doherty. Lewis is a theatre maker and performer from Nottingham, he is also a Creative Associate at the Nottingham Playhouse. He has created two critically-acclaimed, award-winning one man shows, ‘WOLF’ and ‘BOAR’. The ‘Beast Trilogy’ consists of three shows - ‘WOLF’, ‘BOAR’ and ‘HAWK’. The work that Lewis makes is physical, comedic, and filmic in style. It appeals to a range of audiences from older generations to young adults, avid theatre goers to people who feel as if theatre “isn’t for them”. Lewis parodies and recreates classic movie tropes and genres to tell a story using just his body and a chair. He mimes every prop, makes over 90% of the sound effects live, and brings to life 30+ characters in WOLF and 40+ in BOAR. Both shows have had critical and audience success, have had sold-out runs at the Edinburgh Fringe (WOLF at Underbelly and BOAR at The Pleasance) and have toured across the UK to theatres and festivals such as Curve Leicester, Arena Wolverhampton, The North Wall Oxford, Waterside Arts Centre, Nottingham Playhouse, Birmingham REP, Latitude Festival, and Soho Theatre.
Genevieve Carver is a Sheffield-based poet and spoken word artist. Together with multi-instrumentalist live band The Unsung she has created two gig theatre shows which have toured nationwide to venues including London’s Roundhouse and Underbelly at the Edinburgh Fringe. Her latest show A Beautiful Way to be Crazy explores female experiences in the music industry and was researched through interviews with female and non-binary music practitioners. Her debut poetry collection of the same name was published by Verve Poetry Press in 2020. In this solo set she’ll be performing some poems from her shows as well as other pieces examining themes including roundabouts, dead musicians and hangovers.
4 canvas camping beds.
4 cups of apple sauce.
Heaven’s Gate is open and the Away Team are ready for graduation!
But whatever you do, don’t say the C-word. (Cult).
Inspired by the real life Heaven’s Gate Cult, Cosmic Collective Theatre bring their award nominated dark comedy play back to Yorkshire following a sell out tour.
Sarah Jay Hawley
Zen, Drugs ‘n’ Rock ‘n’ Roll showcases a ground-breaking 4D audio-visual stage creation examining the healing power of the arts. Zen, Drugs ‘n’ Rock ‘n’ Roll includes live performances of new music, original spoken word poetry, bespoke soundscapes and immersive multi-media VJ projections by world renowned, platinum-winning, songwriter and vocalist, Sarah Jay Hawley, whose career spans thirty years. Sarah Jay’s voice has been heard by millions on Massive Attacks’ platinum selling album Mezzanine. Sarah Jay’s sultry ‘Dissolved Girl’ tones woke Keanu Reeves at the beginning of ‘The Matrix’, serenaded Bruce Willis in ‘The Day Of The Jackal’, and was recently remixed for the hit TV show ‘Westworld’ – to name but a few of her credits. Following a life-changing stroke and cancer surgery in 2016/17, Sarah Jay is now neuro-diverse. This project marks her re-emergence as a creative force focussing on healing as a creative activity, and creativity as a healing process. Zen, Drugs ‘n’ Rock ‘n’ Roll is a modern opera, based on Sarah Jay’s life as a global performer and her subsequent stroke, cancer and recovery. Sarah Jay wants to reach a broad, international audience: men, women and non-binary of any age, but particularly those who are neuro-diverse and/or affected by trauma.
Sounds Queer is a Sheffield-based arts organisation dedicated to supporting and platforming underrepresented queer artistry run by Tommi Bryson and Talya Stitcher. In this special one-off variety event, Tommi will be joined by alien-punk drag artist extraordinaire Ding Frisby; and celebrated multi-instrumentalist and composer-performer Sarah Heneghan for an exciting hour of music, laughter, and queer joy.
Caro Sparks is a member of Abnormally Funny People spreading mirth by telling stories of her childhood as the deaf one in the village. Her unique approach to signing songs has had her performing at festivals such as Glastonbury, WOMAD the cabaret circuit and the finale song of the Paralympic Opening Ceremony 2012.
Akeim Toussaint Buck is an interdisciplinary performer and maker born in Jamaica and raised in England. Since graduating from the Northern School of Contemporary Dance in 2014, Akeim has been involved in multiple cross-artform projects with a wide range of artists and communities from around the world. The aesthetic of his work combines skills such as: dance, film, poetry, beat-box, singing and acting, fused to create performances that tell stories capable of bridging the intersections of a variety of audiences.
To a rousing soundtrack of all time classics, the Comedy Waiters evoke the genius of Morecambe and Wise and conjure adolescent admiration with a hilarious boyband homage. In the theatrical finale, rain cascades from umbrellas, with beautiful choreography performed to ‘Singing in the Rain’. Completely self-contained, with a wheeled trolley ready to roll on any terrain, this act is versatile and utterly charming.
Tamar and Jo are a Hull-based dance company made up of Tamar Draper and Jo Ashbridge, established in 2018. Their work blends contemporary dance with other performance styles, and is artistic yet accessible, fun and fabulously costumed.