Brighton Magazine

The Brighton Magazine

Selected Brighton Magazine Article

Wednesday 07 April 2021

Halted By The Pandemic The Aliens Fight Back In Worthing As Part Of Brighton Festival 2021

Multi-award winning theatre ensemble Rhum and Clay are bringing their latest critically acclaimed production, The War Of The Worlds, to Worthing this May.

The show will be at the Pavilion Theatre from Thursday 20 May - Saturday 22 May, a chance to see live theatre return to stage in Worthing as part of Brighton Festival 2021.

"No one would have believed, in the last years of the 19th century, that human affairs were being watched from the timeless worlds of space...."

But we did believe. We believed that Martians landed in New Jersey. We believed a water tower was an alien war machine. We believed a man walked on the moon. Perhaps we will believe anything .. everything.

Almost 80 years to the day since the original broadcast of Orson Welles classic radio play was reported to have caused widespread panic in its listeners- this legendary icon of science fiction is reimagined for our era of  deliberate disinformation, 'fake news' and 'alternative facts'. 

An era where mistrust and fear are routinely stoked by the purveyors of 'news' and the truth has become an ever-harder concept to identify. 

The War of the Worlds slips between 20th and 21st century lives and listeners as if moving the dial on a radio: atmospheric and disorienting.

Rhum and Clay are renowned for the humour and physicality of their productions as well as their ability to create beautiful, visually textured on-stage worlds.  

They are joined here by Isley Lynn, writer of the extraordinary sexual odyssey Skin a Cat, currently being adapted for television.

Her powerful contemporary voice offers a welcome counterpoint to a story that originated in the male-dominated society of the 19th and early 20th centuries.

The War of the Worlds explores our inability to separate fact from fiction and our active complicity in the process of being hoodwinked: lies dressed as truth and truth presented as fiction. But even fake events cause real reactions. 

With references ranging from H.G Wells and Orson Welles via Jeff Wayne and a nod to Tom Cruise, this intense, unsettling and raucously entertaining reinvention of the original alien invasion myth shows that in the darkest of times, the truth is a very precious commodity.

CEO Amanda O"reilly says: 

"We will continue to prioritise the safety of our audiences and cannot wait to open our doors and welcome you back into the buildings for a live socially distanced theatre this May."

Brighton Festival will be returning with a celebration of art and culture from 1 May 2021 with guest director, the poet, author and broadcaster Lemn Sissay MBE. 

The festival includes digital and in person work with a diverses programme including visual art and installation, classical to contemporary music, theatre and comedy, film and literature. 

The full programme is available to view at, and will be on general sale from Wednesday 7 April 2021.  

Lemn Sissay, Brighton Festival 2021 Guest Director says: 

"The last year has been incredibly challenging for so many people and in so many different ways. 

"We say the arts bring people together, but we also mean that through the wonder of the arts our minds and hearts can come together." 

There will be a performance with a British Sign Language interpreter on Saturday 22 May, 2:30pm. 

For more information and to book tickets for The War Of The Worlds please visit or call the WTM Box Office on 01903 206206.

by: Mike Cobley


Shooshh is arguably Brighton's most popular beach nightclub. The pandemic left the club and its team with the constant challenge of reinventing itself to adapt to new rules wherever it was possible in order to survive.

Africa in the Lounge returns for another series of concerts drawing on musical traditions from across Africa. The next shows will be streamed live on Youtube and Facebook from Ooosh! studios in Brighton, on 23 and 30 April.
Credit Erin Hambly

Drug Store Romeos formed at college in Farnborough when childhood friends Jonny and Charlie pinned an ad about finding a bassist for their new band to the school's notice board - Sarah replied and quickly proved herself a better vocalist than either of them.

The Blind Cupid Shakespeare Company has teamed up with Brighton based project Quarantine Kids Storytime to produce short form audio dramas of Shakespeare's plays. The collaboration aims to deliver classical content made accessible to young audiences and those new to the Bard.

Philippe Cohen Solal (Gotan Project) and Mike Lindsay (Tunng) continue their audio, visual and digital exploration of America's most celebrated Outsider artist Henry Darger, with the next instalment of the project.

The registered arts charity Brighton Dome & Brighton Festival has received two grants to help the organisation recover and reopen over the next few months. 
Credit Jamie MacMillian

Author and broadcaster Lemn Sissay MBE took time out to explain what it's like to return for a second time as Guest Director, and what's in store for this year's very different, but as ever eclectic, Brighton Festival 2021.

Primal Scream frontman Bobby Gillespie has teamed up with solo artist and Savages vocalist Jehnny Beth to release the album Utopian Ashes. 

Kavanagh are the epitome of unsigned, DIY rock'n'roll. With a fearsome live reputation, they have won two national Battle of the Bands competitions and have toured the UK. Based in Brighton, they featured on the I Am Not Your Slave compilation album of unsigned talent from the South East. 
Credit Taylor Jewell

In the final weekend of lockdown, Charleston invites audiences to tune in online for a bite-sized version of the annual Charleston Festival.
Credit Holly Whitaker

Drawing influence from a wide range of eras and genres, Brighton-based troupe Genn have released new EP Liminal. From the opening bass ostinato of its first track Feel to the hooky refrain of closer Falling Out, through rock'n'roll, psychedelia and funked-up, post-punk vibes, Liminal is a veritable rollercoaster journey.

Brighton, today, became the first UK city to launch a multi-arts festival since lockdown. 

Quintet Junodream - who play The Prince Albert, Brighton, later this year - possess a rare flair for infusing their immediately compelling alt-rock with an abundance of creative sonic embellishments

Brighton & Hove City Council has become one of the first to formally adopt the homeless bill of rights as embodying the city's aspirations for its treatment of homeless people. 

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