The National Theatre’s free outdoor festival, packed with unforgettable live performances from the UK’s leading arts venues, River Stage returns this June. With a selection of London’s finest street vendors serving up delectable flavours, courtesy of KERB.
The Glory will kick off the River Stage for summer 2023. Hosted from 9 – 11 June and curated by The Glory’s veritable Grande-Dames of drag and performance, Jonny Woo and John Sizzle, this year’s show will be bigger, bolder and more Glory-ious than ever. Bringing favourites from previous years, including highlights of their drag queen contest Lipsync1000 and their drag king contest Man Up!; a classic Saturday night party with Glory DJ’s and performers; an esoteric afternoon sketching with Drag Life Drawing; sing-a-longs and dance-a-longs; many glittering star turns from leading Glory artists and some DJ sets from their favourite club nights.
Drawing on their hit immersive production We Are As Gods, the internationally acclaimed James Cousins Company curate a weekend to remember at River Stage from 16 – 18 June. Join them for an explosive celebration of dance with performances and workshops by the UK’s top dancers and singers, featuring bold choreography from contemporary to salsa and tap, to line dancing with a flavour of your most loved pop routines. All set to a joyous soundtrack that will make audiences ‘Wanna Dance with Somebody’.
The UK’s premier festival of contemporary Arab cultures, Shubbak will showcase ground-breaking Arab arts through a cutting-edge programme, featuring new and unexpected voices alongside established artists, from 23 – 25 June. The festival will kick off its multi-artform programme with a weekend of music, performance, workshops and installations. Activities for all will include performances by bands, dancers and late DJ sets, bringing the best of London’s and the international Arab cultural scene to this free festival.
Hackney Empire’s Young Producers return from 30 June – 2 July, with three free days of youth-fuelled talent, unbelievable energy and pure vibes. Curated by the next generation of young creatives aged 14-21, the Young Producers will showcase the hottest London talent for the festival’s final weekend. Hosted by Scully (No Signal Radio), audiences can expect dance crews, rap battles, big vocals, steel pans, grime, ‘90s bangers, alongside some of the latest crazes tearing up TikTok.
One of the Hackney Empire’s Young Producers said, “We’re so excited to be invited back by the National Theatre for a second year. It’s such a privilege to be given the River Stage again to make it our own and showcase the best of London’s emerging talent.”
KERB brings their open-air market to the National Theatre once again, opening from May to September. London’s longest banqueting table will be ready for visitors to tuck into seasonal street food specials such as pork belly and chicken thigh Portuguese bifanas, fluffy Korean bao buns, Venezuelan cachapas, Japanese ramen, Nashville fried chicken, Indian thalis, Sicilian style deep pan pizzas and wildly flavoured ice cream.
River Stage will run from Friday 9 June until Sunday 2 July 2023. Further programme details will be announced in due course.
More information can be found here