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It’s in to be out at Lighthouse this July as Poole’s centre for the arts confirms a third season of Lighthouse OUTSIDE with a series of live music, theatre, comedy, circus and opera performances outdoors in the Amphitheatre space to the side of the building. 

Highlights include British Afro-rock legend Osibisa in their first Poole show for decades, London Festival Opera’s A Summer Night at the Opera featuring distinguished singers from the Royal Opera, English National Opera and Glyndebourne, and very welcome returns to Lighthouse for acid jazz heroes the James Taylor Quartet and Ninebarrow, the BBC Folk Awards nominated Poole-based folk duo with a growing national following. 

“We’re really excited by the outdoor season this year,” says Tim Colegate, Head of Programming at Lighthouse. “We’re partnering with some of our regular creatives and also seeing some new faces grace our stage – there are acts from various genres and backgrounds.  

“Lighthouse is all about high quality, diverse cultural experiences and there is no shortage of those at this year’s Lighthouse OUTSIDE. It’s so heartening to see an initiative that began life as a hasty response to having our building closed in 2020, blossom into an integral part of our programme. 

“I’m looking forward to seeing our community having a great summer again at Lighthouse.” 

The characteristically diverse programme also includes the return of Comedy Club 4 Kids – all the fun of a grown-up comedy club without the rude bits – and a superb line up from our resident Coastal Comedy featuring rising star headliner John Lynn, Steve Lee’s comic creation Mad Ron, and the gender fluid musical comedy of JennyBSide. 

Live and Unheard, the grass roots music strand at Lighthouse, pitches in with its mini-festival Bit on the Side bill headlined by Berlin-based Brazilian bluegrass stompers, the Mary Hill Family Band. 

The ever-quirky Squashbox Theatre take a sideways look at Ancient Greece in Myths and Monsters; while The Tide, from the UK’s pre-eminent Black British theatre company Talawa, examines the evolution of British culture and is presented as a double bill with one of two shows – Florence, Louise Jordan’s one-woman performance exploring the myth of Florence Nightingale, and Strong Enough, Strong Lady Productions’ powerfully optimistic circus show. 

Lighthouse OUTSIDE began as a response to the Covid restrictions of 2020 when public performances indoors were prohibited and is staged in the Amphitheatre venue created in the 1970s when the building was constructed but never fully used. 

Audiences are invited to pack a picnic and bring chairs, blankets or cushions to sit on. 

With tickets on sale this week, the full programme for Lighthouse OUTSIDE is: 

Lighthouse: OUTSIDE: Comedy Club 4 Kids 
Saturday 9 July, 2pm, Ampitheatre 
Back again, the mirth-filled hour-long moment finds top-billed working stand-up comedians being as funny as ever just a bit less rude! Age guidance: 6+  

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: Coastal Comedy: John Lynn + Mad Ron – The Third Hardest Man in Uxbridge + JennyBSide 
Saturday 9 July, 7.30pm, Amphitheatre 
Staged by our resident comedy club, three top acts on our outdoors stage with laidback Irishman John Lynn, comedian Steve Lee’s comic creation Mad Ron, and the gender fluid musical comedy Trollopop of JennyBSide. 

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: Osibisa 
Friday 15 July, 7pm, Amphitheatre 
A rare Poole appearance for the British-Ghanaian Afro-rock legends formed in London in 1969. Expect to hear material from their most recent album New Dawn as well as classics from the 1970s including Sunshine Day and Dance the Body Music.  

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: Live and Unheard - The Bit on the Side: Mary Lee Family Band + Outlandish + Stax to Stones + Sugar Rush + Gypsy Jukebox 
Saturday 16 July, 1pm, Amphitheatre 
A special outdoor edition of our grass roots music strand headlined by Berlin-based Brazilian bluegrass/country/roots/punk outfit Mary Lee Family Band, with the eclectic world music influences of Outlandish, Dorset covers band Stax to Stones, all-female pop band Sugar Rush and Salisbury’s turbo-folk-ska-reggae-punk party starters Gypsy Jukebox. 

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: James Taylor Quartet 
Friday 22 July, 7.30pm) Amphitheatre 
A very welcome return to Lighthouse for the brilliantly funky acid jazz standard bearers best known for their signature take on the ‘Theme from Starsky and Hutch’ as well as the hit single ‘Love the Life’.  

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: Louise Jordan: Florence 
Saturday 23 July, noon, 3pm, Amphitheatre 
Developed at Lighthouse, Louise Jordan’s one-woman performance of original folk songs and storytelling explores the myth of Florence Nightingale, shedding light on her life as a campaigner, writer and social reformer. 

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: Talawa Theatre Co: The Tide 
Saturday 23, Sunday 24 July, 1.15pm, 4.15pm (Sat), 1pm, 3.45pm (Sun), Amphitheatre 
Co-created by writer Ryan Cameron and choreographer Jade Hackett, The Tide explores the narratives and experiences of migration within the UK whilst holding a mirror to an evolving British culture. Talawa’s first show created exclusively for outdoor performance. 

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: Strong Enough 
Sunday 24 July, noon, 2.30pm, Amphitheatre 
A powerfully optimistic outdoor show that uses circus, comedy and feats of strength to celebrate stories of finding strength in unexpected places. 

Lighthouse OUTSIDE: A Summer Night at the Opera 
Friday 29 July, 6.30pm, Amphitheatre 
Presented by London Festival Opera featuring distinguished singers from the Royal Opera, English National Opera and Glyndebourne, with outstanding young artists, a celebration of opera magic in the company of Mozart, Verdi, Bizet, Puccini, Offenbach, Gilbert and Sullivan, and more – a feast of some of the greatest music ever composed. 

Lighthouse: OUTSIDE: Squashbox Theatre: Myths and Monsters 
Saturday 30 July, 11am, 2pm, Ampitheatre 
The myths and legends of ancient Greece have been passed down through the generations, entrancing and fascinating people for thousands of years… Now join Squashbox Theatre and explore these legends using a quirky and ingenious blend of puppetry, storytelling, live music and comedy. Age guidance: 5+ 

Lighthouse: OUTSIDE: Ninebarrow 
Saturday 30 July, 8pm, Ampitheatre 
It’s a pleasure to welcome back our old friends Ninebarrow, the brilliant Dorset-based folk duo to showcase favourites old and new in the great outdoors. 

Tickets on general sale from Friday.

:: Ninebarrow photo by Greg Funnell

(NC)

Published 7 June 2022