Sussex

Pop-up theatre in Brighton Festival line-up

The pop-up Roundabout Theatre Image copyright Sarah Rushton-Read
Image caption The 168-seat circular auditorium can be flat-packed into a lorry

A flat-pack theatre will be transported to Brighton and put up in Regency Square for this year's festival.

The pop-up Roundabout Theatre will be brought to the city by Paines Plough touring theatre company and is one of the highlights of the event in May.

This year's guest director is award-winning author Ali Smith.

Launching the three-week festival, chief executive Andrew Comben said Smith had brought a "thrilling" list of artists to Brighton.

Liberty and equality

He said the list ranged from Turkish author Elif Shafak to avant-garde theatre company Mabou Mines, and included well-known writers such as Jeanette Winterson and Margaret Atwood.

"She [Smith] has also brought an incredible range of artists to the festival who are responding to the world in a particular way, both people she knows well, and also people she has loved for many years and perhaps longed for an opportunity to work with," he said.

This year's festival has three central themes - art and nature, the crossing places between art forms, and "taking liberty"

The third theme will celebrate liberty, equality and freedom against the backdrop of the general election, with one evening dedicated to a celebration of the Human Rights Act.

Image copyright AP
Image caption Award-winning author Ali Smith is the guest director of the 2015 Brighton Festival

In her foreword to this year's festival brochure, Smith said it had been "tremendously exciting" to help programme the event.

The Scottish author said she had always loved the city's sense of fun and friendliness, its vibrant open-mindedness, the way it opens to the sky and "the way the rest of Europe is so close it's almost visible".

The festival line-up includes Peter Strickland's film The Duke of Burgundy accompanied by a one-off live performance of its score by Cat's Eyes.

There will be a series of screenings and talks by French filmmaker Agnes Varda who will also create an installation at Brighton University.

And a series of UK premieres includes a directorial debut by Raphaelle Boitel, described as one of the most remarkable performers on the European visual and physical theatre scene.

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