BAFTA winning actor Dominic West to appear at Port Eliot Festival
11:18am Friday 15th June 2012 in Music
Dominic West, BAFTA-winning star of The Wire, The Hour, The Awakening and Appropriate Adult has joined the line-up for this year’s Port Eliot Festival. Dominic will be interviewing eminent Sanskrit scholar and paragliding champion Jim Mallinson, as well as awarding the prizes in the inaugural Port Eliot Spelling Bee.
From 9pm-3am every night of the festival, a host of DJs, including house music pioneer Brandon Block will take over the brand new Sipsmith/Hg2 bar and indie cult hero Lawrence from Felt, Denim and Go-Kart Mozart will be in discussion with Will Hodgkinson of The Times and Paul Kelly, director of Lawrence of Belgravia, the forthcoming documentary about Lawrence’s work, life and musical ambition.
After this year’s festival, Port Eliot will be taking a sabbatical until 2014. Catherine St Germans said "It’s been five years since the festival last paused for breath and, after considerable thought, we have decided to take a break in 2013, so there will be no Port Eliot Festival next year. The year off will be a chance for the gardens to thrive and for the Port Eliot organisers to step off the roundabout and take longer to plot for 2014. So, now there’s a breather around the corner, we are doubly determined to go out with the greatest festival we’ve ever staged. If you have a ticket for this year, brace yourselves for a magnificent time and if you’re considering coming, now’s the moment to get in before we begin our gap year."
The idyllic Port Eliot estate in Cornwall plays host to the UK's most imaginative arts festival; over 100 performances on 10 different stages - presenting a wealth of creative talents from the worlds of books, music, fashion, food and film. Always inspiring and always surprising, Port Eliot has established itself as a matchless event on the arts calendar; things happen at Port Eliot that you just don't find at other festivals. In 2011, Kate Winslet gave an impromptu reading, Hollywood maestro Martin Scorsese curated the outdoor cinema and world renowned milliner Stephen Jones demonstrated the best way to bake and eat a hat.
PORT ELIOT FESTIVAL 2012 For immediate release 19-22 JULY 2012 15 June 2012 Tickets now on sale at www.porteliotfestival.com Words John Cooper Clarke, Jessica Hynes, Dominic West, Tracy Chevalier, Stephen Frears William Dalrymple, Jon Ronson, Simon Garfield, Simon Munnery, Miles Jupp, Luke Wright, India Knight, Murray Lachlan Young, Rosie Boycott, Hannah Rothschild, Kate Summerscale, Andy Kershaw, Nick Rosen, Matthew Hollis, Robert MacFarlane, Miriam Margolyes, Geoff Dyer, Susie Parr, Gavin Pretor-Pinney, Craig Taylor, Ben Masters, Rebecca Pike, Sam Leith, Mick Brown, dovegreyreader, Ali Smith, Christopher Biggins, Laura Beatty, Pamflet, Alex Bellos, Paul Murray, Wynn & Sally Chamberlain, Duncan Minshull, Jim Mallinson, Richard Milward, John Wright, Joanna Walsh aka ‘Badaude’, Tishani Doshi, Brian Selznick, Chris Yates, Dan Kieran, Matthew De Abaitua, Marcel Theroux, Will Hodgkinson, 5x15, Will Fiennes, Roy Hutchins, Matt Harvey, Paddy Bramwells, Jackie Kay, James Flint, David Bramwell, Chris Lewis, John Andrews, Jon Berry, Tom O’Reilly, The Gentle Author, Luke Jennings, Neil R. Thomson, Pete Fowler, Mr Natty, Roger Wyndham-Barnes, Tim Pilcher, Sarah Angliss, Colin Uttley, Dave Mounfield, Mathew Clayton, Gary Knights, Jamie Brisick, Eric James, Will Burns, Telltales, ProfWriting, Camper Obscura Music & Cabaret Stornoway, Toy, Andrew Weatherall, Suggs, Jeb Loy Nichols, Cate Le Bon, Laetitia Sadier, Bristol HiFi Sound System (DJ set,) By The Sea, The See See, Diagrams, Tim Burgess (DJ set), The Bees, Brandon Block, Tim Lyall, H Hawkline, Louis Eliot and the Embers, John Hegley, Jo & Danny (DJ set), RSVP, Spoonful, Geoff Travis (DJ set), Grasscut, Stealing Sheep, Rachel Zeffira, Crybaby, Black Kat Boppers, Late of the Pier (DJ set), Sean Rowley’s Guilty Pleasures, Gaz Mayall, Robert Ellis, Lazersonic, Ali B, 2 Tonic, Maia, 50 Degrees Choir, The Schizodelic Sound, The Urban Voodoo Machine, Matt Barnard, Bayou Bros, Flap!, Woodland Blue, Dalla, Jon Hicks, Grooveyard, The Half Sisters, Hat Fitz & Cara, Hip Hop Karaoke, Jonah’s Lift, Gareth Jones, Jools on Wheels, Manière des Bohémiens, Mik Artistik’s Ego Trip, Spiro, Tea Ladies on Tour, Wildcat Will, Ry Spencely, All the Fires, Kola Food – The doors of the Georgian Big Kitchen will be thrown open as an international gathering of chefs invites you to eat your way around the festival. This year’s line-up will include Angela Hartnett, Tom Parker-Bowles; Gioconda Scott; Richard Bertinet; dinner lady Sarah Husband on cooking for 200; godfather of fusion cuisine Peter Gordon; editor of Waitrose Kitchen, William Sitwell; acclaimed hairstylist and committed baker Sam McKnight; Nathan Outlaw, who has two restaurants at the St Enodoc Hotel in Rock, including the 2 Michelin-starred Restaurant Nathan Outlaw; Rose Prince, food writer and journalist, author of The New English Kitchen and The New English Table; presenter and ‘food adventurer’ Stefan Gates; Chris Sherville - resident chef at Port Eliot, whose fish restaurant is a firm festival favourite; chef, writer and broadcaster Allegra McEvedy, co-founder of LEON, the award-winning, healthy, fast-food restaurant group; Russell Norman, owner of Venetian-inspired restaurants Polpo and Polpetto; and Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall.
Caught By The River - Down in the quarry, in front of the boathouse looking over the Lynher estuary, a refreshing mixture of bands, DJ sets, conversations, readings, discussions and archive recordings combining nature and music (not to mention the Rough Trade shop nearby) makes Caught By The River the perfect spot to pull up a hay bale and take root. In addition to the music line-up mentioned above, this year’s highlights include nature writers Robert MacFarlane and Chris Yates reading from their latest books; Tim Burgess reading from his autobiography, Telling Stories; treasured artefacts from Jonny Trunk’s vast collection of ‘Library Music’; Richard King reading from his history of independent music, How Soon Is Now; the Heavenly Jukebox; Pat Long discussing his new book, The History of the NME; and a Nature Disco created by celebrated natural history sound recordist Chris Watson, whose credits include some of the most significant wildlife series in TV history, including The Life of Birds, The Blue Planet, The Life of Mammals and Frozen Planet. Plenty more at caughtbytheriver.net The Wardrobe Department - At festival time at Port Eliot, the walled garden alongside the 19th-century Orangery becomes The Wardrobe Department, led by Port Eliot fashion curator Sarah Mower, the British Fashion Council’s Ambassador for Emerging Talent. Since it began, Port Eliot has played host to major names in fashion, establishing a tradition of spontaneous creativity as festivalgoers flock to make clothes and accessories. This year is no exception, with Mary Katrantzou, Stephen Jones, Luella Bartley, David Sims, Barbara Hulanicki, Anita Pallenberg, Rubbish, Bumble and bumble, Erickson Beamon, Piers Atkinson, Fred Butler and Pamflet all preparing special surprises for Port Eliot.
Port Eliot Flower Show - Curated by acclaimed Ballet Rambert production designer Michael Howells in the beautiful Orangery garden, the Port Eliot Flower Show gives a nod to the traditional village show, while staking out its own territory with a whole series of distinctive classes, as well as music, performances, gardening discussions and a chance for festivalgoers to scoop the Best-in-Show title. This year’s line-up will include poet and artist Sean Borodale; Anna Pavord, author of The Tulip and The Curious Gardener; organic gardener Val Bourne; new media pioneer and investigator of plants, Jonathan Drori; singer and actress Issy Van Randwyck; the St Austell Town Band; and 70-piece choir, Vocal Harem.
The Idler Academy - A collection of colourful characters, corralled by Tom Hodgkinson, editor of cult magazine The Idler, spouting forth on subjects as diverse as Frisbee Tree Golf, dolphins and 18th-century coffee houses. This year, the Academy lecturers include Dr Mark Vernon giving a mini-course in the Greek philosophers; Boff Whalley of Chumbawamba on fell running and playing the banjo; Dan Kieran discussing his new book, The Idle Traveller; Hugh Warwick on frogs; Lucy Cooke on the habits of the lovable sloth; Latin classes from actress Susanna Hislop; Tom Hodgkinson teaching the ukulele; a minstrels class from Michael Tyack; Robin Harford leading a forage around the festival site; Ben Moor gathering teams for rounds of Frisbee Tree Golf; NJ Stevenson reveal the links between fashion and song; and literary classes for children with the Wicked Young Writers Award.
The Odditorium - A brand new venue at Port Eliot that celebrates the fringes of culture; its mavericks and pranksters, adventurers and occultists. The Odditorium's diverse range of talks will cover the history of ghost trains, the world’s first erotic comics, Victorian prankster Reginald Bray and the extraordinary tale of a Cornish plumber who re-invented himself as a Tibetan lama and fooled the publishing world. The Odditorium is organised by Sony Award winning broadcaster, writer and musician David Bramwell.
Five Dials – Online literary magazine Five Dials will invite writers and musicians to the Walled Garden throughout the festival. Published as a PDF by Simon Prosser and Craig Taylor of Hamish Hamilton, each issue begins life in a notable international location and is loosely based around a theme. Recent issues have included musings about trees, parenting and springtime by the likes of Maggie O’Farrell, Alain De Botton, Tracy Chevalier, Piers Paul Read, Philippa Gregory, Henning Mankell and Blake Morrison.
The Hullabaloo - Port Eliot’s 100-year-old Rhododendron Garden will be transformed into a world of games, drama, imagination, music and treasure hunts as Cornwall’s captivating Rogue Theatre invites children to take part in tales of fairies, pirates, witches, giants and elves.
Wild swimming - Festivalgoers are invited to leap into the Lynher estuary at high tide for an enlivening dip or a hands-on lesson in kayaking.
Boutique Camping - Campers looking for a luxurious stay in Port Eliot’s parkland have plenty of comfortable choices, with original, custom-fitted American Airstream caravans, traditional gypsy bowtop caravans, canvas bell tents, tipis and yurts ready and waiting for their arrival at the festival.
FESTIVAL INFORMATION Port Eliot Festival – 19-22 July 2012 Tickets and full festival info www.porteliotfestival.com Twitter: PortEliotFest Port Eliot Estate, St Germans, Saltash, Cornwall, PL12 5ND Ticket prices: Adult weekend ticket including camping £150 Child weekend ticket (8-15 year olds) including camping £75 7 and under weekend ticket including camping FREE Pitch for Camper Van/Caravan £20 -ends- Notes to Editors 1. Port Eliot, the ancient and beautiful stately home at St Germans in south-east Cornwall, sits in more than 100 acres of woodland gardens and park. The House at Port Eliot has been lived in for over 1000 years. Augustinian monks were there from the year 937, while the earliest remaining evidence of a dwelling on the site is a 1500-year-old glazed tiled floor, dating from the late Iron Age. The Grade I-listed mediaeval priory and house were remodelled in the 18th-century by renowned British architect Sir John Soane and sit in gardens and park created by landscape gardener Humphrey Repton, which stretch down to a secret estuary of the river Lynher. Today, Port Eliot is home to the 10th Earl and Countess of St Germans.
2. Port Eliot festival potted history After hosting the now-legendary Elephant Fayre music festival at Port Eliot from 1981 to 1986, Lord St Germans began a new festival at Port Eliot in 2003, along with his wife, Catherine St Germans, actor and musician, Rick Worthy (also one of the original organisers of the Elephant Fayre) and Simon Prosser, the publishing director of Hamish Hamilton. The writers, poets and journalists appearing at the festival were encouraged to perform material they would not be given the opportunity to present at orthodox literary festivals – using their creativity to devise imaginative, interesting and entertaining shows, they went far beyond reading aloud from their latest books and taking questions from the floor. Some created original works for the show, others performed spontaneous acts. All were asked to “do something different with words” – and so the Port Eliot Festival’s unique spirit was born. The first year, the festival had 17 paying punters and three times as many performers, artists and crew. But it was a magical weekend of words and music. Word quickly spread and the following year, 1,000 people attended. In the years since, an incredible array of performers has appeared at Port Eliot – drawn by the festival’s laid-back, friendly approach and colourful atmosphere. New areas have been added consistently, broadening the appeal to younger audiences and others who might never have considered coming to a literary festival before.