Award-winning acts and fringe favourites confirmed for this year’s Offbeat festival!

Aaron Simmonds - photo by steve ullathorne - Joanne Templeton

Oxford Playhouse and Arts at the Old Fire Station have announced the full programme for Offbeat 2019, Oxford’s annual festival of new performances.

Now in its fourth year, the festival will take place from Monday 17 to Saturday 29 June.

Offbeat 2019 sees more than 50 shows and events over 13 days, spanning theatre, comedy, spoken word, music, family-friendly events and dance.

The vast majority of the tickets are priced at £10 or less, allowing as many people as possible to access this hugely exciting festival.

Tropez! photo credit Hannah Wilmshurst – Jordan Grassi

For the first time, Offbeat is delighted to offer a programme of support for six artists all at early stages of their careers. Each artist has been given mentoring in dramaturgy, marketing, logistics and technical theatre, and each will have three performances at the festival to develop audiences and work on their show.

Performances from this year’s Supported Artists include spoken word and music from Channie B; a virtual reality experience from Electrick Village called Raw Transport and a poetic play from Rowan Padmore. Plaster Cast creates Sound Cistem, a radically-queer dance party; Thomas Page Dances brings an intimate duet called A Moment and Ashanti Wheeler-Artwell presents her first one-woman show, British Vogue.

Other 2019 highlights include free theatre for families in Gloucester Green with We’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat; the Olivier Award-winning play Rotterdam, direct from the West End; a deconstructed and absurd take on Chekhov’s First Play from award-winning Irish theatre company Dead Centre; 2017 BBC New Comedy Award finalist Aaron Simmonds’ latest show, Disabled Coconut; and three evenings of performances from the best bands and acoustic artists from Oxford and beyond, in association with BBC Introducing.

Jeremy Spafford, Director at the Old Fire Station, said: “We love working with our friends from The Playhouse to bring Offbeat to Oxford and offer our audiences a feast of new work. And what a feast it will be.

Doug Crossley – Daniel D. Moses

“Offbeat has become that moment when Oxford gets a chance to experience the amazing creativity of performing artists from across the UK in one mad week. What a treat.”

Louise Chantal, Director at the Oxford Playhouse, added: “Working with the Old Fire Station on Offbeat is one of the highlights of our year; we love bringing a taste of the Edinburgh Fringe to the city and I urge people to try something new, see as much as possible and immerse themselves in 10 days of amazing performances. ”

Last year’s Offbeat festival saw more than 3000 people attended 55 performances with highlights including BBC New Comedy Award winner and Britain’s Got Talent 2018 winner Lost Voice Guy, life-sized interactive game zone The Actual Reality Arcade in Gloucester Green and satirical extravaganza Trump The Musical. Made up of performances from Oxfordshire-based artists and companies, at least a quarter of the programme is being seen in Oxford for the first time.

Somie and Avi – Sonia Chandaria Tillu

To see the full 2019 programme visit:

Tickets for Oxford Playhouse and Burton Taylor Studio shows are available from the Oxford Playhouse Ticket Office on 01865 305305 or book online at

Tickets for all Old Fire Station shows are available from the Old Fire Station Ticket Office on 01865 263990 or book online at

Offbeat 2019 is made possible with support from Arts Council England, Oxford City Council, The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH), and Windich Legal.