Karen D’Arcangelo on why we need to think about homelessness and how we can help the crisis by going to the Bussey Building this Saturday.
The Festival season that we have been dreaming of through the gloomy winter months is finally approaching. Now the sun is shining more and more conversations start to feature the line-up and anticipation for Glastonbury, Bestival, Secret Garden Party, Wildnerness… I could go on. Festivals are a time to dance and let go whilst escaping that samey clubby weekend. But there are similar experiences to be had without leaving the Big Smoke. This year The Big Noise Festival returns with its vibrant one-day festival of music and arts taking over the entire CLF/ Art Cafè, which is of course, the beloved Bussey Building. It is cheaper than most festivals you will find in London and importantly, it is entirely in aid of the Big Issue Foundation.
Featuring headliners such as Dillinja, The Correspondents, Perc and Channel One Sound System, the Bussey’s three floors and basement will be exploding with 14 hours of art in all its forms. There will be a variety of music, comedy, theatre, visual arts and performances. Over 60 acts and 250 individual artists; from talented fledging locals to headliners, it will be difficult to choose on which floor to be, and is sure to create an inimitable atmosphere.
The Big Noise Festival was created by Kevin Fisher and Laura Ratling, driven by the urge to raise awareness and funds on a rapidly increasing issue: homelessness. They said: “We thought we would approach this issue by offering an experience that the general public can afford, celebrating the arts and featuring acts that are not always accessible to everyone.”
According to Crisis, the national charity of single homeless people, in 2013 the Government estimated around 2,414 people sleep rough on any one night across England, a rise of 36% over 3 years. But this is only a snapshot, the actual figures are likely to be much higher. 6, 437 people slept rough at some point in London during 2012/2013 an in increase of 75% over the last 3 years. Crisis also stated that almost one in 10 people experience homelessness at some point in their life. So the likelihood of someone we know or ourselves experiencing homelessness is high, very high and what are we doing about it?
The festival’s first edition in 2013 was a major success, it sold out completely and the Bussey was buzzing for 12 hours with Dj sets, rock, folk, hip-hop bands, spoken word, comedy, theatre, beatbox, jazz, house music, techno, jungle, magicians, live graffiti, and plenty of other art and cultural events. People were stopping members of staff thanking them for putting up such a vibrant event and if one could describe that day in one word, it would be euphoric.
“Putting up an event of such calibre is significantly challenging. The volunteering team’s priceless work, the artists’ generosity in giving their free time and talent and the support of various business are the key elements to the Big Noise’ success,” says Fisher. Last year, The Big Noise Festival raised seven thousand pounds that was entirely donated to the Big Issue Foundation. This year they are planning to go bigger, much bigger. So if you are in London, get yourself to the Bussey Building on Saturday and prepare to be blown away by a crazy variety of performances. Raising funds and awareness about homelessness has never been so fun and easy.
14th of June 2014 – Tickets £15 online
Bussey Buidling AKA CLF/ Art Cafè, 133 Rye Ln, Peckham, London SE15 4ST