The programme of Cardiff’s Biennial International Arts Festival, like any great arts festival spans genre, demographic, medium and delivery. Covering an experimental Laura Marling, hip hop, visual art and cabaret it promises at the very least; diversity.

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Konny Kon & Tyler Daley deliver their soul project based in Manchester to the Weston Studio at the Wales Millennium Centre in a recognisable live music event set up. We’re all standing and theres a DJ deck on stage. The evening’s content however is anything but generically recognisable. Having been in the public sphere through First World Records and Soundcloud this live event marks the release of an album in a few weeks time.

REYKJAVÎKURDÆTUR are an all female 10 strong ensemble who burst into the space with power and originality. With their rap collective they excel with impulse, drive and power in their message of sexual freedom in the male dominated world of hip hop.

Chester P (Task Force) colour the room with a more delicate poetry. His lyrics are blunt, dynamic and at times incredibly moving in their honesty. It’s fresh, gritty and necessary.

I think some audiences may have struggled with the lack of narrative to this evening; why this group of artists? Why now? But it doesn’t take long to look at the work being offered to find your own narrative if you want to. And an honest offering of self, which all of these artists manage, is more than enough for me to be sold on their collaboration.

Back to diversity of programming; another evening to feature in the festival is away from the Millennium Centre and to Enfys Television Studio, somewhere entirely different.

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Welsh musician Katell Keineg takes us, with her band, to places in music of Greek proportions. Highway One is music with narrative at its most charming. This is a strong story based on a tale in which our protagonist meets a centaur and takes her to Delphi on a trip to the Oracle in order to discover meaning. We question ‘the sacred and the mundane, the ancient and the modern, the real and the fictional.’ Directed by Mathilde Lòpez this storytelling album is sure to be a for a niche audience however while the live performance did leave me wanting more it admittedly did charm me into wishing to meet a centaur too. 3/5

Review written by anonymous.

Children of Zeus + Reykjavîkurætur were shown on Saturday 9th June 2018  at the Wales Millennium Centre as part of Festival of Voice 2018. To find out more information on the production, visit here…

Highway One was shown from Wednesday 6th until Sunday 10th June 2018 at the Wales Millennium Centre as part of Festival of Voice 2018. To find out more about the production, visit here…

Written by Theatrefullstop