Hailed last year as an extraordinary programme of vibrant new circus and cabaret performance, the Postcards festival returns to Jackson’s Lane theatre in Highgate this week for a second year. The idea of the festival is to host bite-sized portions of tasty performance treats rather than full-length evening performances; this year’s selection of colourful and cheeky postcards come from all over the UK and include artists from the worlds of burlesque, clowning and live music as well as new circus.
Award-winning circus collective Boom! kick off proceedings this week with Floors, a high-energy acrobatic spectacular performed on a cutting-edge set. Fans of new circus should also earmark the Lab:Time showcase on 12 June, in which ten young circus artists including Billy Jacques (recently seen on Britain’s Got Talent) reveal the results of their experimental “lab-time” at Hoxton’s Circus Space.
Emerging artists rub shoulders with some of the great and good of the live performance circuit – Londonist’s favourite human glitterball Scottee comperes Party Piece in which the audience are invited to share their own weird and wonderful talents, from milk-crying to goat-impersonating. Audiences can also join in with Boogaloo Stu’s Pop Magic, in which viewers will write, record and create a video for a new pop single in just one hour. Marcella Puppini, of retro girl group the Puppini Sisters, will be performing an evening of Murder and Lullabies with her darkly decadent “real band”, Marcella and the Forget-Me-Nots.
Fans of burlesque will have plenty to celebrate too, with a cabaret evening hosted by Crimson Skye and Elsa Quarsell’s photographic exhibition of burlesque performers in their homes. Showgirl Leela Bunce leaves the feathers at home for the poignant Waiting For Stanley, telling the story of a young woman awaiting the return of her husband from WWII through clowning and puppetry.
Expect the bright, the brilliant, the brash and the bonkers from this three-week festival that’s fast becoming a highlight of the North London arts calendar.