Summer in Southside

It’s back! Birmingham Hippodrome’s two-day family festival Summer in Southside heads back to the carefree days of childhood with a programme full of FREE fun for kids of all ages (that’s grown-up kids too!). On the weekend of 14-15 July, the streets around the theatre and the Birmingham Hippodrome foyers will be transformed into a summer playground with traditional fun-fair rides, retro arcade games and a whole host of exciting and nostalgic performances to spark your imagination.

A new commission for this year comes from Fantabulousa, a pop-up family entertainment grotto, where you can listen and join in with different fabulous story time sessions involving storytelling, lip-syncing, face painting and the wonderful world of drag.

There will be theatrical delights for all, with plenty of exciting pop-up shows throughout the weekend. Join in the fun at one of the highlights of the festival: a new commission from The Fabularium, who performed at Summer in Southside 2017 with their amazing show, Reynard the Fox. This year, The Fabularium return with the brand new outdoor performance There be Monsters. Join the cranky but noble knight Don Quixote and his long-suffering, fortune-seeking side-kick on their epic quest to revive chivalry and confront monsters.

 “Housed in a technicolour pop-up grotto and devised with some of the region’s leading drag artists, Fantabulousa offers stories songs, dancing, dress-up, and plenty of glitter - and grown-ups are very welcome too!” Tim Hodgson Producer at Tickertape Parade.

Another exciting new aspect of the festival is the construction of French artist Olivier Grossetête’s Perrott’s Chinese Tower. Over the weekend, the giant structure is built, completed, pulled over and then squashed! From Monday 9 July Birmingham Hippodrome are running FREE public participatory workshops in preparation for the festival where you can help construct the building blocks for this immense tower.

There’s plenty to see and do this year including Actual Reality Arcade, a life-sized interactive pop-up game zone inspired by classic arcade games. The festival also features Mufti Games, creating playful and memorable experiences for all.

We also have Fun DMC, featuring a daytime Block Party for kids and parents! Come and learn the art of rap, decorate the graffiti train, compete for your very own gold chain in dance competitions and for all those fathers with smooth moves you can enter the Dad Dance Off!

Other festival highlights includestreet theatre, comedy, installations specialists Dot Comedy, pop-up theatre performances from Pif Paf, live brass band Bostin Brass, live performances from Gorillabot. You can also stroll through the independent food stalls, have your face painted or have a go at a whole range of craft workshops and family activities in our theatre foyers.

So grab a pal or three, round up your family and step into Birmingham Hippodrome’s weekend of summertime silliness and childhood delights.

“Summer in Southside is a great festival for all the family to enjoy in the heart of the city. We have tons of activities to keep your little ones busy and to entertain the big kids too! This year we’re following the theme of your childhood which ties in nicely with our blockbuster show at the Hippodrome this summer – Matilda the Musical. They’ll be retro arcade games, pop-performances, craft workshops and food stalls flooding the streets of Southside, the Arcadian and our foyers. And it’s all completely free!” Graham Callister, Associate Director, Community Engagement & Festivals at Birmingham Hippodrome.

For more information about Summer in Southside, visit: 


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