Opening night at the Reading Fringe Festival


We attended a very special launch of the Reading Fringe Festival in the glamorous Dome at Station Hill on the night of Tuesday 18 July.

The support act, Reading’s very own Radiophonics, opened the show with a jaunty bass bopping number, segueing smoothly into Superstition. They engaged physically with the audience in this super atmospheric Dome, with trails of lilac dry ice and were sweetly harmonious in the soulful Someone to Lean on, contrasting with the gospel feel Stay with Me, with percussive footstamping. The strongly emotive Crazy finished their rousing set.

And the audience went just that, as the totally fabulous Sons of Pitches (winners of BBC2’s Naked Choir) burst onto the stage with their honeyed version of Ed Sheeran’s Shape of You. They then took us on an irresistible tour of favourite kids’ TV programmes, contrasting with the reflective and soulful Miss Jackson that followed. They boop bopped their way through an upbeat and hilariously choreographed version of Blondie’s Heart of Glass before improvising a quite brilliant reggae/sea shanty song about Reading’s Purple Turtle, by special audience request!

They then calmed the audience mood with their formally staged and powerful Game of Thrones theme song before moving into their slick history of UK and Irish boy bands, ranging from the catchy Jitterbug to the delightfully suggestive Freak me Baby. The sonorous bass took the stage next with his extraordinary tonal improvisations – a veritable one man bass band!

The final crowd pleasing audience participation number came all too soon. The superlative Sons of Pitches had literally taken Reading by storm as the heavens opened and water splashed into the Dome and around our dancing feet.

This promises to be a spectacular Fringe Festival, embracing burlesque, comedy, dance, music and much more.

The Reading Fringe Festival runs until 23 July at venues across Reading, including Katesgrove’s Rising Sun Arts Centre, South Street Arts Centre and Olympia Ballroom. Tickets can be booked online.


Links
  1. Reading Fringe Festival
  2. Rising Sun Arts Centre
  3. South Street Arts Centre
  4. Olympia Ballroom
  5. Sons of Pitches
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