The Cure's Robert Smith has been announced as the curator of the Southbank Centre's 25th Meltdown festival.
The event will take place from June 15-24, with Smith set to follow in the footsteps of 24 legendary artists selected to share their vision as curators of Meltdown - from the very first curator, British composer George Benjamin in 1993, though other luminaries such as John Peel, David Bowie, Nick Cave, Patti Smith, Massive Attack, Ray Davies, Yoko Ono, David Byrne and, most recently, M.I.A.
Smith said: “I am honoured and excited to be curating the 25th Meltdown Festival. More than 30 of my all time favourite artists - some of the most exciting, inspirational, intense and influential performers of the last 40 years - will make sure this 10-night extravaganza at London’s Southbank Centre is the ‘must see’ event of the summer!”
Southbank Centre’s Meltdown is the longest running artist-curated music festival in the UK. Jeff Buckley played his final UK show at Elvis Costello's Meltdown; The New York Dolls reunited for Morrissey’s curation; and an all-star line up including Nick Cave, Grace Jones and Pete Doherty sang Disney songs with Jarvis Cocker in his 2007 Meltdown.
Robert Smith’s Meltdown will be the first major festival to take place across the whole Southbank Centre site, making use of the newly re-opened Queen Elizabeth Hall and Purcell Room after two years of detailed re-design and refurbishment. Along with the iconic Royal Festival Hall, these intimate and iconic venues will provide yet more creative platforms for the next generation of bands, and provide a unique and unmissable Meltdown.
Bengi Unsal, senior contemporary music programmer at Southbank Centre, said: “Robert Smith is the perfect artist to help us celebrate our silver jubilee Meltdown. Over a career spanning four decades, he has achieved globally-recognised excellence, paving the way for the alternative and the uncategorisable. This year’s festival will be a celebration of that influence and that legacy. We also celebrate the legacy of Meltdown, where the legendary and the contemporary meet, where icons perform in an iconic setting, and where both artists and audiences enjoy once-in-a-lifetime experiences.”
First line-up details will be announced in March. Tickets will go on sale to Southbank Centre members on March 13 and to everyone else on March 15.