650 events, 370 acts, 200 speakers, 11 days, 9 stages.


Join us for day nine of HowTheLightGetsIn for a new panel of world-leading speakers and unmissable performers

Catch eminent biologist Rupert Sheldrake, author of Evolution in Four Dimensions Eva Jablonka and Oxford evolutionary psychologist Oliver Scott Curry as we question whether Darwin and Dawkins are still correct about genetic evolution in Making Humans. Discover the reasons behind the rise of paganism with naturalist Colin Tudge, philosopher Stephen Law and LSE sociologist Eileen Barker in Return of the Pagans. And find out what the state of contemporary cosmology is today with George F.R. Ellis in Science Under Siege.

Shake off those 9 to 5 blues and embrace the weekend with our Friday Knees Up line-up of music, comedy and film, featuring spellbinding indie folk from Luke Sital-Singh, award-winning comedy from Pat Cahill, swinging dancing at our Fantasy & Reality Ball and an infectious late night DJ set from former Streets front man Mike Skinner.

Don’t miss the new Riverside site, which is home to the dazzling acrobatics of the Circus for only two more days. Catch the evening performance to experience a sensual and sexy extravaganza just for adults. And explore the brand new Riverside fairground and Fayre market, as well as the tranquil Spa surrounded by the rolling hills of the Welsh countryside.

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Join us for a magical evening of big ideas, legendary voices and musical marvels. Experience harp sensation Serafina Steer who did Jarvis Cocker's album of the year, Time Out  "Rising Stars" Tankus the Henge, BBC Wales Artist of the Week Siôn Russell Jones, as well as our opening debate Dreamland and the BAFTA-winning documentary All in the Best Possible Taste with Grayson Perry.


Get the all evening pass for full access to the debate, documentary and live sessions.


Festival Live - 11 Day Pass holders have access to this event.

002 Dreamland.so

Fulfil your dreams and make the most of your life! So advocate headmasters, moralists and revolutionaries. Yet poet John Betjeman's principal regret was that he did not have more sex. Is life not about goals and ambition but about the moment of being? Or is making our dreams real the only way to fulfilment?


Writer of the Guardian's 'This Column Will Change Your Life' Oliver Burkeman, author of A Life Inside Erwin James, and Absolutely Fabulous star Helen Lederer, debate the best way to live.


Thursday Trailblazer All Evening Pass tickets also provide access to this event.

004 All in the Best Possible Taste Grayson Perry

This BAFTA-winning documentary follows contemporary artist Grayson Perry in the first part of his series dissecting the impact of class and background on personal taste. Here Grayson goes in search of working class culture in Sunderland.


“Documentary of the Year” Independent

In association with TVF International.


First Weekend Pass, Festival Live - 11 Day Pass, and Thursday Trailblazer All Evening Pass tickets also provide access to this event.




Institute of art and ideas