Nestled in the heart of London you will find the Underbelly Festival who are celebrating their 10th birthday and summer on the Southbank.
Between the months of April and September brings the best in live comedy, circus, cabaret and family entertainment to the banks of the Thames. Most of the shows are short but sweet and the vast majority of tickets costing under £20 making the Underbelly an affordable destination in London.
I was so excited to attend a Silent Disco event held in the Spiegeltent at the Underbelly as I hadn’t been to one in years and they are always a great night out. On arrival, we were given a pair of glowing headphones and showed how to swap between the three available music channels and how to adjust the volume to our preference. On entering you pass by a bar on your left to then be in a larger circular tent arena that had more than enough room for the number of tickets sold to dance the night away without a care in the world.
In the centre of the tent was a small stage which the DJ was using to explain to everyone how the night would work and countdown to the music starting. We were told there would be multiple acts performing throughout the night but for the most part, it was down to us to embark on our own adventure with our chosen channel and dance like no one is watching or listening in this case. One of the best things about a Silent Disco is going to the bar, taking your headphones off to order and hearing a room of people singing full pelt to multiple songs with seemingly no music to the outside world.
‘The Atmosphere was just Incredible’
There was a large range of songs, so I would say there is something for everything and you can change channels as little or as much as you like throughout the night. I listened to songs including Backstreet Boys, Bonnie Tyler, Luiz Fonsi and Justin Beiber, Destiny’s Child, Kevin Little, and switched over from some rock numbers I didn’t know, but the atmosphere was just incredible, and everyone looked like they were really enjoying themselves. Each channel lights up your headphones a different colour so if it looks like a group of people are having a dance-off to a particular song you can quickly switch over and join in the fun, there was even a tent wide Candy dance at one point.
The DJ would announce when a performer was due to come on and you could take the headphones off at this point as the music played over the tannoys. The first performer was Felipe, an aerial and handstand artist who was incredible to watch with his jaw-dropping strength holding himself atop a high platform with just one hand doing the splits. We saw Meth the Drag Queen perform Katy Perry’s Firework and a girl on roller skates who went from using one hula hoop to about 8, called Rachel Symone who we wish we could all Hula Hoop like back in the school days.
The whole event ran for two hours and is suitable for ages 16 and up but does contain strobe lighting and adult themes so make sure this is appropriate for you. Tickets are £17 plus fees and they are holding a second Silent Disco on the 31st August if you want to give it a go. I already have had friends asking if I want to go to the next one, and I finally learnt that it is called the Underbelly Festival and not Udderbelly as I had been calling it all these years. It’s part disco, part cabaret, all party and a whole lot of fun.