There is a wonderful selection of musical treats in store at the free, twenty-four-hour, non stop, multi arts and science First Light Festival taking place on Lowestoft’s South Beach from 18th – 19th June. From world-leading drum and bass to renowned jazz, legendary folk to premier performances, there truly is something for everybody.
To launch the festival, a parade of banners made by schools and the community will wind its way along the promenade, ending at the Sunlight Stage. This will be followed by a rousing, large-scale community performance of The Light Returns by local folk musician, John Ward, in celebration of Lowestoft’s history and the joy of open-air singing.
The majority of cross-genre music acts will take place across the twenty-four-hour period on the Sunlight Stage. The line-up includes:
- International DJ, LTJ Bukem who headlines on Saturday evening;
- World-renowned jazz saxophonist Andy Sheppard;
- DJ Les Spaine – the Godfather of UK funk and former head of Motown UK;
- Manchester’s jazz-funk collective Secret Night Gang;
- Upcoming Congolese vocalist and the London Afrobeat Collective’s frontwoman Juanita Euka;
- Sam Kelly & The Lost Boys, one of the most exciting bands to have entered the UK folk scene in the past twenty years presented by FolkEast as a celebration of the tenth anniversary of the annual FolkEast festival;
- The Kosmos Ensemble playing an inspirational combination of tango, jazz, gypsy, Balkan and music from the Far East;
- Premier performances to herald in the dawn including new music by revered composer Christopher Gunning entitled Dawn Light, and contemporary musician Nic Pendlebury’s new electric viola piece. Andy Sheppard will also return to the stage to perform his new project East Coast.
New Dawn Stage
New for 2022, the New Dawn Stage is the stage for the freshest, boldest sounds that Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire has to offer. With a line-up of young, emerging talent selected by a panel of experts representing BBC Introducing Suffolk, BBC Introducing Norfolk, Wild Paths Festival, Catch 21 Records and Access Creative College, it’s your go-to spot for new music over the festival weekend. Come and listen to New Dawn Stage headliner Mosiah Levi, John Green, Tyler Nathaniel, Maple Ward and others.
Helen Hayes, First Light’s music coordinator says: “Throughout the pandemic we’ve been working with local young musicians providing online workshops and artist development support. It feels so good that we’ve been able to come together with Access to Music to put together this fantastic showcase for the New Dawn Stage. Mosiah Levi was selected to headline the stage from around 80 applicants and we are so grateful to BBC Introducing, Wild Paths and Catch 21 Records for supporting us in the selection process, which I can tell you was not easy because we had so many fantastic acts apply to play.”
The Gardens Stage
Located in a beautifully atmospheric setting amongst the trees of Kensington Gardens, the Gardens Stage will offer an eclectic range of mostly acoustic musical performances. Echoing the distinct First Light experience, expect community ukulele playing, ambient sounds of the Lowestoft landscape, soulful sounds of the blues, and the ethereal qualities of the harp.
The Fishers Gin Beach Club
For those who want to dance the 24 hours away, the Fishers Gin Beach Club will offer an exciting line-up of national and regional DJs playing hip hop, dub, Latin beat, soul, Balearic, jazz and more across the 24-hour period.
LTJ Bukem After Party
For those seeking yet another late-night clubbing experience, Saturday night will also include ‘Our House presents LTJ Bukem After Party’ which is taking place at Mossy’s nightclub on the seafront. This is one of the few ticketed events.
The concept of silent discos originated as an arts project that re-shaped the dancefloor and changed the way DJs read the crowd, with DJ channels playing radically different styles of music. First Light takes the concept back to these roots, with a line-up of distinguished DJs known for playing different styles. People will be able to switch between dancing to the best in Northern Soul, Afro House, Electro Swing, Jazz Funk, Latin, Detroit Techno, Hip Hop, Broken Beat and Disco.
For further details, please see www.firstlightlowestoft.com