The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has forced us to cancel Brainchild Festival 2020. Not only are we heartbroken that we can't give you all the magic weekend we had been working so hard to create, but the cost of cancelling has been devastating to our already very meagre finances. We've lost a significant sum of money on the festival, and have also lost our only source of income and are faced with a huge challenge to keep Brainchild alive.
As many of you will know, Brainchild has never had a lot of money. We built it from scratch when we were just 19, and ever since have prioritised the affordability and independence of our festival over making big profits.
After six hugely challenging and amazing years of volunteering all our time on Brainchild, we'd FINALLY made a roadmap for our future that could protect us as a sponsor-free, values-led festival with a paid team.
But then this pandemic hit. We spent £20,000 producing our festival and party at the Vaults, and we can get none of this money back. We don't have reserves to fall back on, and this financial challenge threatens all of our progress and our dreams of an uncompromised Brainchild - we really need your help to weather this storm and protect our future.
Through donating at checkout, claiming partial refunds & making straight up donations, some of you have already given us a massive head-start, without which we'd be staring at an even greater financial blackhole. Thanks to you guys, we've been able to knock 5K off this target, but there's still a long way to go.
We've never asked for money before, and we know this is a deeply challenging time for so many people. We're not taking it lightly.
We just hope, and believe, that there are enough amazing people in this community that amongst those who are able to give even a small amount, we can raise what we need to make it through this crisis.
So if you’ve had special memories, learned something new, met people you love or discovered artists that changed your life at Brainchild then please consider making a donation. No matter how small, every bit will help us to secure Brainchild the best possible future on the other side of this.
If you've never been, but you've heard good things, or you've just happened to find this page, then please take a sec to consider how valuable an inclusive & inspiring environment and community can be for young adults & emerging artists, and how rare it is to for a grassroots, community-driven and independent project to still be thriving eight years in. Please help us keep it alive.
Our mission is to give emerging artists & young adults the space and community they need to creatively engage with what matters to them. We celebrate inclusive, collaborative and radical attitudes to make spaces where people can feel inspired, joyful and embraced for who they are.
Over eight years, we have provided commissioning, performing & development opportunities to over 2000 artists and thousands more wonderful people who have made the festival the special place that it is every year.
"The general feeling that women, femmes, trans-women and non-binary individuals were not only able to take space but actively encouraged to. That was hugely important and moving for me, and drew my attention to how in real life the opposite is nearly always true.” - (audience member, 2019)
‘Before Glastonbury, Bestival, North Sea Jazz Festival or SXSW, Brainchild gave me, the independent artist with a small fan base and no money the platform and opportunity to build upon that. Brainchild Festival was one of the first. And they continue to do that each year with a line up that champions the smaller artists that need that platform.’ - Femi Koleoso (musician, Ezra Collective/Jorja Smith)
‘If Brainchild represents the future of the British art scene, it’s in safe hands.’ – The Independent
'Brainchild isn’t just a festival but a community of artists dedicated to nurturing and furthering each other’s work. I went from attending Brainchild to performing there to receiving work opportunities from those performances. Brainchild has created a growing family of often marginalised voices and given them a space to connect, flourish and breathe together. I have made some brilliant connections and friends through Brainchild and at times like these - this is essential for the arts.” - Rachel Nwokoro, Poet & Cross Disciplinary Storyteller
We've taken a creative approach to rewards that we hope will be more fun for you. If you donate, we'll give you a goodie bag made up of any number of treasures, big and small, from the Brainchild universe. This way, you won't know what you'll get, and that’s part of the fun. Donations will less tied to specific items and more like an entry to a lucky dip for more and more wonderful goodies. Check out the rewards section to see what kind of Goodie Bag you could be getting from us.
Goodies feature lots of gorgeous Brainchild merch (tees, sweaters, postcard packs, badges & patches) creations from our own team, including a bespoke bra made just for you or someone of your choice by El Bras, dreamy artists like Jerkcurb, Eliza Hopewell, Alice Bloomfield, Alex Weir, Klaus is Koming & River Cousin, magazines like It's Freezing in LA and Skin Deep, poets like Harry Baker & Bridget Minamore and writers like Emma Warren.