Words & pics (from Swingamjig 2015) by Ed King
Swingamajig 2016 is four weeks away – time to get your glad rags out, dust down your feather boas, and dress up for some fine & dandy debauchery. 1st May people…
Curated by Electric Swing Circus & Kambe Events, Swingamajig 2016 has 6 stages on offer, ‘packing a massive program of music and performance’ into its new home – with Balkan Beatbox as the main event headliner, alongside a bevy of the bold and beautiful from Burlesque, ‘electro swing, bassline, gypsy, punk, balkan, folk, jazz, rockabilly and rock and roll.’
There’s also a tie in this year to the International Dance Festival Birmingham, with a few artist crossovers and Stomp Stomp – a day of ‘lindy hop and authentic solo jazz workshops’ at The Night Owl on Saturday 30th April. For more on Stomp Stomp, click here.
But trying to define Swingamajig, or to slot it neatly into one event pigeon hole or another, is a foolhardy endevour – as Birmingham Review found out for the first time at last year’s festival (…shame on us).
Try not to think of Swingamajig in terms or genres, just imagine a masquerade ball exploding like a glitter filled piñata inside a cabaret circus big top, with all the fire crew dressed by Mr Ben and Dita Von Tease after a mouthful of mushrooms. So hopefully that clears that up a bit.
And if a burlesque tinged psychedelic 70’s children’s TV metaphor isn’t crystal enough for you, have a look at our BREVIEW of Swingamajig 2015 – click here
So then… down to brass tacks. Swingamajig 2016 – who’s on, where, and for how much? As previously stated, this year’s festival headliners are Balkan Beatbox – who will be in The Big Top Main Stage at some point after dark.
Next on the live line up are The Destroyers – a local ‘MegaFolk’ ensemble who are as addictive as fun is legally allowed to be (in fact, they may not be legal. Defra are getting back to us), with the band that started it all, Electric Swing Circus, having their rightful place of prominence. Another first, I popped my ESC cherry last year and they are all sorts of awesome.
There’s more on stage show from The Tootsie Rollers, Jack Rabbit Slim, Swingrowers, Tankus the Henge, The Carny Villains, The Rin Tins (again, particularly awesome), Barbarella’s Bang Bang, The After Hours Quintet and Jim Wynn Swing Orchestra – with DJ sets coming from JFB, C@ in the H@, The Chicken Brothers (another stand out set from Swingamajig 2015), Aries, Tallulah Goodtimes, Jenova Collective, and the man with possibly the best biog in history – Father Funk.
Outside all the audio, there’s visual treats with Cabaret from Dr Andrew Szydlo, Sasha Khron, Jon Udry, Those Two Magicians, Rose Rokoko and Brothers Swag. With Burlesque from Kitty Bang Bang, Rubyyy Jones, Eliza DeLite, Peggy De Lune & Equador the Wizard – alongside a site worth of games, sideshows, food stalls and general nice-nice-naughtiness to keep you safe and occupied. Well, occupied.
Click on the highlighted links to get a bit more background on all the above. Or for a wider SELLSELLSELL, have a butcher’s at this little number – you might even win something:
Birmingham Review @ Swingamajig 2016
Birmingham Review is absurdly excited to say we will also be at Swingamajig 2016, with an army of well dressed reporters gathering words & pics for a special Birmingham Review @ Swingamajig 2016 souvenir brochure. You know those glossy keepsakes you get from a West End musical… kind of like one of those, but with a bit more show.
So look out for us near The Big Top Main Stage – we’ll be selling food & drink at the Birmingham Review Chai Stall, with a whole play pen of stuff to dig your fingers into as well. Come & say hi, drink some chai, dance around like a deranged demon child in drag, and scrawl your inner most secrets on the Birmingham Review Chalk Board of Thought. We promise not to tell.
Birmingham Review will also have photographers at our stand taking some souvenir snaps to email out you (free, gratis) after the event – with the first to pre-order a copy of Birmingham Review @ Swingamajig 2016 getting their pics included in the souvenir brochure, should they so desire.
See you at Swingamajig 2016.
Swingamajig 2016 comes the Rainbow Venues in Digbeth on May 1st – running from 2pm until 6am. Tickets are priced at £22/£25/£30. For direct festival info, including online ticket sales, visit http://swingamajig.co.uk/
For more from the Rainbow Venues, visit http://therainbowvenues.co.uk/