From Friday 9 June, internationally renowned rapper, producer, director, visual artist and activist M.I.A. takes over Southbank Centre as curator of the 24th Meltdown festival. Sri-Lankan born, London-bred, M.I.A. is, in her own words, ‘bringing together outlaw musicians from everywhere, who have contributed to keeping things weird, exciting, opinionated, loud, emotional and brave’.
The result? A ten day celebration of music and performance that will challenges perceptions and break boundaries. Though M.I.A.’s own performance on 18 June has now sold out, it’s not too late to be part of this phenomenal festival, with tickets for some truly unique live gigs across Meltdown still available.
Getting Meltdown off with a bang, the Mercury Prize winning Scottish trio will be shaking the foundations of Royal Festival Hall on the festival's opening night. And, there are still a handful of tickets available in the hall’s side stalls, but be quick, they won’t hang around for long.
On Saturday dance music maestros Soulwax perform their new album From Dewee, aided by a seven-piece band and three drummers on the Royal Festival Hall stage. There are still some tickets available in the auditorium at £10-30.
There’s a rare chance to see the originator of Afro Trap in London as French rapper MHD hits Southbank Centre for a one-off performance. With a sound inspired by African beats and lyrics that span from city living to Cameroonian centre-forwards, MHD has gone viral in recent years, so best catch him whilst you can.
Fresh off the back of selling out the Eventim Apollo on the final leg of his Landlord tour, the pride of Peckham, Giggs, brings his trademark laid-back Grime flow to our Royal Festival Hall stage on Meltdown Monday. We’ve still got select groups of tickets across the venue for this one if you move quickly.
This distinct double header gives you the electronic-flecked hip-hop of Swedish rapper Yung Lean, and the phenomena that is Princess Nokia - labelled New York’s most outspoken intersectional female rapper. Though we’ve sold out downstairs for this gig, there are still tickets to be had in groups on the balcony, with student and concessions starting at just £10.
On the Thursday of Meltdown, Royal Festival Hall will be whining to the sound of reggae and dancehall with this Jamaican duo, and there’s still room for you to get your grind on with us.
If you’re quick off the draw you can still grab one of the few remaining tickets for the front stalls to see the lo-res electro Canadian sensations. Move a bit slower and we’ve a few groups of tickets still available up on the balcony.
Young M.A’s breakthrough single Ooouuu has been remixed by big-name artists that include 50 Cent and Nikci Minaj. You can hear the Brooklyn rapper’s original sound on the Royal Festival Hall stage, as we’ve a smattering of tickets still available for her performance flanked by Canadian rapper and visual artist Tommy Genesis.
Wrapping up the second Saturday of Meltdown is another double-header as US rapper Mykki Blanco and DJ and activist JD Samson bring the late night party vibes to our Clore Ballroom. Tickets are still up for grabs from £7.50 for concessions and students.
Get involved in the carnival spirit with free music and dancing throughout M.I.A.’s Meltdown, from the Caribbean Carnival of Just Vibez (10 June), to the South Asian sounds of Meltdown Mela (17 June). Shake yourself to London’s top DJs at the Rinse FM Block Party (11 June) or dust off your rhymes and take to the mic yourself at Hip-Hop Karaoke (14 June).
Talks, exhibits, radio and rhythms; there's much more to M.I.A.'s Meltdown than the gigs listed above.