James Lavelle's Meltdown

Musical and artistic innovator James Lavelle curate the 21st Meltdown in 2014, following in the footsteps of some of music’s biggest names, including David Bowie, Yoko Ono, Patti Smith and Jarvis Cocker.

Combining creative entrepreneurship with a radical artistic approach, James’ genre-defying portfolio spans music, art, fashion, design and film, and as part of his groundbreaking work with UNKLE, boasts acclaimed musical collaborations with the likes of Queens of the Stone Age, Nick Cave and Thom Yorke.

Collaboration, innovation and a spirit of non-conformism are central to his approach. James worked with young people to curate the programme, meaning that this very special Meltdown in line with his commitment to mobilising the next generation to become the inventors of their own culture.

Mo’Wax inspires a new generation

Both Meltdown and James Lavelle’s iconic label Mo’Wax turned 21 in 2014,  and as part of the festival, Mo’Wax21: Urban Archaeology, an interactive exhibition devised with Southbank Centre as part of the festival, celebrated the creative output of the label James launched as a teenager.

Doug Foster's installation No Beginning, No End in the Clore Ballroom, featured five cyclical artworks and UNKLE's The Heretics' Gate soundtrack. 

A trailer from The Musical Genius featuring Derek Paravicini
Afro-Guyanese playwright John Agard at Poetry Parnassus
These brilliant musicians perform music from the movies that made Clint Eastwood a star
Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds...
A special performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem
Candoco Dance Company present an evening of bold new dance
Introducing the performers - Move: Choreographing You at Hayward Gallery
A comedy show about opinions: how we form them, how we challenge them and how we can change them
Billy Bragg travels down to Guy Marsh Prison, Dorset getting guitars into prisons
Soloists, chorus, and octet with projected images to celebrate the human spirit in South Africa
The extraordinary orchestra and chorus from Kinshasa perform in London for the first time
Preview of 2011's mini-festival with Lang Lang
How like a winter hath my absence been...
Not marble nor the gilded monuments
Cargoes by John Masefield read by Francesca Beard
For the first time in history, all five UK and NI poet laureates are women
Southbank Gamelan Players perform Subakastawa, a popular gamelan piece


Meltdown stories

American garage punk band Radkey performing at James Lavelle's Meltdown, Southbank Centre 2014
The Guerrilla Girls use facts, humour and fake fur to expose discrimination