festival

M.I.A.'s Meltdown

9 Jun - 18 Jun

M.I.A. curates the 24th Meltdown. Sri Lankan-born and London-bred, she is recognised worldwide as a rapper, producer, director, visual artist and activist.

Meltdown is one of the UK’s most anticipated music events each year, as an iconic artist curates their own personal festival, revealing their interests and influences through a series of one-off gigs and performances across 10 days.

Unlike usual festival programmes, each headliner has their own individually ticketed show. The festival's eclectic mix of music, art, performance and film brings together a diverse range of artists, resulting in unique collaborations and historic one-time-only events.

M.I.A., born Mathangi 'Maya' Arulpragasam, follows in the footsteps of renowned festival curators including Jarvis Cocker, Patti Smith, David Bowie, Yoko Ono, Ornette Coleman and David Byrne.

Her influences range from Nu Rave and dancehall to electro and hip-hop from around the world. Albums including Arular, Kala, /\/\/\Y/\ and AIM have topped critical charts with their politically conscious lyrics and inimitable genre-blending.

Named one of the ten defining artists of the 2000s by Rolling Stone and one of the world’s one hundred most influential people by Time magazine, she has been nominated for two Grammys, a Mercury Prize and an Academy Award.

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I'm bringing together new outlaw musicians from everywhere, who have contributed to keeping things weird, exciting, opinionated, loud, emotional and brave or off the grid in the present climate
M.I.A.

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Fri, 05/19/2017 - 14:40
All you need to know about the viral French music sensation ahead of his gig at M.I.A.'s Meltdown
Electronic
Folk & World
Fri, 04/21/2017 - 09:59
Yep, change your life. Here's your guide to what promises to be an unforgettable 10 days
Electronic
Rock & Pop
Wed, 04/19/2017 - 10:39
Soulwax and grime superstar Giggs are among the newly added acts
Urban
Mon, 03/27/2017 - 17:18
Dive into M.I.A.'s Meltdown with our playlist, featuring tracks from all the names taking the stage
Electronic
Rock & Pop
Mon, 02/06/2017 - 17:52
Rapper, producer, director and visual artist M.I.A. will curate the 24th Meltdown festival in 2017
Mon, 02/06/2017 - 12:10
Guy Garvey’s Meltdown festival 2016
Mon, 02/06/2017 - 11:48
A highlight of David Byrne's Meltdown in 2015, Atomic Bomb!
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Watch Cibo Matto's entire set
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Watch Keaton Henson perform Sweetheart, What Have You Done To Us?

9 Jun 2017

Photo of two Rinse FM DJs at Southbank Centre

Free

Gigs
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Hear Rinse FM broadcast shows live from Southbank Centre
Image from Jaime Martinez GIF

Free

Art
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Seek out the digital screens on site to gifs by photographer and visual artist Jaime Martinez
Photo of free gig at Southbank Centre

Free

Gigs
1:00 pm, 9 Jun 2017
Join us for a special M.I.A.'s Meltdown edition of Friday Lunch
Singers performing at Southbank Centre's Big Sing

Free

Gigs
5:30 pm, 9 Jun 2017
Kick off your night with a special M.I.A. Meltdown edition of Friday Tonic
Gigs
Electronic
7:30 pm, 9 Jun 2017
The award-winning trio test our building’s structure with a show especially created for Meltdown
Photo of a bowl of olives to promote Dates & Olives: Breaking Fast at Southbank Centre

Free

8:00 pm, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Visit this dedicated space for audiences observing Ramadan to break fast

10 Jun 2017

Photo of two Rinse FM DJs at Southbank Centre

Free

Gigs
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Hear Rinse FM broadcast shows live from Southbank Centre
Image from Jaime Martinez GIF

Free

Art
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Seek out the digital screens on site to gifs by photographer and visual artist Jaime Martinez
Photo of a talk to promote Where next for music? at Southbank Centre

Free

Talks & Topics
Business & Economics
1:00 pm, 10 Jun 2017
What can we expect from the music industry in the years to come?
Crowd at carnival party

Free

Gigs
Folk & World
2:00 pm, 10 Jun 2017
Get in the carnival spirit with a day of free music and dancing
Photo of a bowl of olives to promote Dates & Olives: Breaking Fast at Southbank Centre

Free

8:00 pm, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Visit this dedicated space for audiences observing Ramadan to break fast
Gigs
Electronic
9:30 pm, 10 Jun 2017
Dance music maestros Soulwax bring their incredible energy to Meltdown

Free

Gigs
Urban
10 June 2017
Rapper Afrikan Boy takes centre stage for a late night Meltdown party

11 Jun 2017

Photo of two Rinse FM DJs at Southbank Centre

Free

Gigs
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Hear Rinse FM broadcast shows live from Southbank Centre
Image from Jaime Martinez GIF

Free

Art
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Seek out the digital screens on site to gifs by photographer and visual artist Jaime Martinez

Free

Gigs
Electronic
10:30 am, 11 Jun 2017
Bring the family along to a rave for kids and adults alike
M.I.A., Mathangi ‘Maya’ Arulpragasam

Free

Urban
Talks & Topics
12:00 pm, 11 Jun 2017
Hear from M.I.A. herself about her path into the music industry
crowd and singer outdoors

Free

Gigs
Urban
1:00 pm, 11 Jun 2017
Join London's top DJs pumping out tunes in a free day-long party
Gigs
Urban
7:30 pm, 11 Jun 2017
Get ready for African sounds and danceable beats as French rapper MHD plays a one-off show for Meltdown
Photo of a bowl of olives to promote Dates & Olives: Breaking Fast at Southbank Centre

Free

8:00 pm, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Visit this dedicated space for audiences observing Ramadan to break fast

12 Jun 2017

Photo of two Rinse FM DJs at Southbank Centre

Free

Gigs
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Hear Rinse FM broadcast shows live from Southbank Centre
Image from Jaime Martinez GIF

Free

Art
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Seek out the digital screens on site to gifs by photographer and visual artist Jaime Martinez
Gigs
Urban
8:00 pm, 12 Jun 2017
South London’s Giggs brings creative wordplay to his grime and hip-hop set at Meltdown
Photo of a bowl of olives to promote Dates & Olives: Breaking Fast at Southbank Centre

Free

8:00 pm, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Visit this dedicated space for audiences observing Ramadan to break fast

13 Jun 2017

Photo of two Rinse FM DJs at Southbank Centre

Free

Gigs
10:00 am, 9 Jun 2017 - 18 Jun 2017
Hear Rinse FM broadcast shows live from Southbank Centre

9 Jun
Gigs
Electronic
The award-winning trio test our building’s structure with a show especially created for Meltdown
see all events
FAQ
Can I buy a festival ticket for all events?

No, each show is individually ticketed.

Are all the events paid for?

No, in line with Southbank Centre’s mission to bring arts and culture to all and widen access to events and performances wherever possible, around 50% of the events at Meltdown are free. This includes Hip-Hop Karaoke, free after parties, a Rinse FM Block Party, Meltdown Mela, Just Vibez Carnival, a series of talks, a t-shirt exhibition and much more. You can find all the free events here
 

Are there any more events to be announced?

No, all the events at Meltdown are now listed here on our site.

Is M.I.A.’s show sold out?

Unfortunately yes, however we do take returns, so keep an eye out for these especially during the week leading up to her performance. In the event we get a large number, we will announce it on our Twitter account.

Is there another way to see M.I.A.?

Yes, M.I.A. is around for most of the festival, and is taking part in an I AM... talk which is free but ticketed.

Most of the paid shows are seated, does this mean I have to sit through the whole show?

Definitely not, we’ve had Jon Hopkins, Ghostface Killah, Booka Shade, Underworld and Outlook Orchestra (to name a few) play in our venue, and we would never try to stop you dancing – here’s General Levy getting the crowd going in January.

I’m Muslim and am fasting during Ramadan, is there going to be somewhere I can go to break fast?

Yes, there is a designated area, Sunley Pavilion, where we are inviting anyone who wishes, to break fast during Meltdown with dates and olives each evening from 8pm.

Is the time on the ticket when the gig actually starts?

Yes, the gig actually starts at the stated time on the ticket. We publish the stage times onto the event page on the day, so check back then for the most up-to-date information.

I have a disability, can I come to Meltdown?

Yes, Southbank Centre is fully accessible – please see here for more information about how we support our patrons’ access needs.

Can I bring my own alcohol?

Audiences are not permitted to bring in their own alcohol into our venues, we have plenty of bars on site that serve a wide variety of drinks.

What's Meltdown's policy on drugs?

As with all festivals, towns and cities across the country, UK law applies and we have a zero tolerance drugs policy. If you do bring drugs into our venues they will be confiscated and you risk being prosecuted.

I'm under 18. Can I come to Meltdown?

Meltdown is open to everyone, however some of our events are recommended for ages 16+ with any under-18s to be accompanied by an adult. Please check the Need To Know section in the event you're interested in, to see what the age policy is for that event.

Since 1993 some of the world’s most distinguished musicians have been the guest directors of Meltdown. From John Peel through to Massive Attack, via David Bowie, Patti Smith, Morrissey and more, Meltdown has given seminal artists the chance to pick their favourite artists to play and exhibit their work at Southbank Centre.

1993 George Benjamin
1994 Louis Andriessen
1995 Elvis Costello
1996 Magnus Lindberg
1997 Laurie Anderson
1998 John Peel
1999 Nick Cave
2000 Scott Walker
2001 Robert Wyatt
2002 David Bowie
2003 Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry
2004 Morrissey
2005 Patti Smith
2007 Jarvis Cocker
2008 Massive Attack
2009 Ornette Coleman
2010 Richard Thompson
2011 Ray Davies
2012 Antony Hegarty
2013 Yoko Ono
2014 James Lavelle
2015 David Byrne
2016 Guy Garvey
2017 M.I.A.

meltdown stories

story
Yep, change your life. Here's your guide to what promises to be an unforgettable 10 days
story
Soulwax and grime superstar Giggs are among the newly added acts

past meltdown festivals