Our music line-up is another part of why HowTheLightGetsIn is so special...
Nowhere else on earth are ideas and hedonism so closely intertwined.
We carefully handpick a Festival Live programme that melds old favourites with the cutting edge. From exhilarating dance beats to intimate gigs from enchanting solo singers, every taste is catered for.
Day and night, revellers scour the nooks and crannies of our idyllic site for every music genre from tribal dance to Welsh male choir concerts, before heading to our legendary themed parties. Whatever your tastes, our line-up will have something for you.
"The art and soul of the party"- Harper's Bazaar.
Previous acts have included Clean Bandit, King Charles, Laura Marling, Fairport Convention, British Sea Power, Andrew Weatherall, and Ghostpoet...
... and a few thousand others.
Legendary founding fathers of 'ambient dance', The Orb's track 'Little Fluffy Clouds' inspired a whole generation of ravers - and is continuing to do so judging from last year's globe-trotting tour from Canada to Vietnam, Mexico to Iceland. Pioneers of the remix, The Orb's psychedelic electronica will leave you wobbly-legged and gasping for breath at the sheer inventiveness of these musical trailblazers.
'A magical masterpiece, one of the most visually compelling acts of our time' - Resident Advisor
'Things of shimmering beauty' - Telegraph
Hot Chip (DJ Set)
With six studio albums, Grammy and Mercury Prize nominations, electropop heroes Hot Chip are the unquestionable kings of experimental and accessible dance music - 'absurdly danceable even with its sometimes intimately personal lyrics.' HowTheLightGetsIn is set to hear a turntable workout like no other.
‘Among the greatest modern pop acts’ – Guardian
'Hot Chip capture pure joy'- Pitchfork
BRIT award winning, Grammy-nominated and platinum selling Scissor Sister star Ana Matronic, the very spirit of dirty disco, makes her DJ debut at HowTheLightGetsIn festival. Having collaborated with artists such as Elton John and Kylie Minogue, this is a set you should not miss. Camp out to get a space.
'Best pop group in the world' – Bono
'Deep yet designed for the dance floor' - NME
Hot footing from Dublin and New York, Olivier award-winner and Irish Tatler Woman of the Year Camille O'Sullivan returns to HowTheLightGetsIn following collaborations with Yoko Ono, Patti Smith and Jools Holland. The Scotsman said of her last tour 'An artist at the top of her game pushing herself to be better and trusting us to keep up. It's thrilling to watch.' Catch her while you can.
‘Sexy, wild and dangerous’- Times
‘Ravishing, a superb perfomer’- Guardian
'When she sings it's as though her breath is soaked in paraffin - one spark and the whole room would ignite.' - Daily Telegraph
Since Guillemots whispered “Hello Land” in May 2012, sonic rink-a-tinker Dangerfield has been conspicuously silent to the public ear - but rumour has it that in this time he’s created some kind of freeform infinity. Peek for yourself here, as he emerges for his HowTheLightGetsIn debut.
'In him, I hear both Shag & Nightingale' - Jasmine Parallelogram, The Deviator
Festival favourites and "The Kings of Hip-Hop Swing" (Evening Standard) return to the dancefloors of HowTheLightGetsIn with their flamboyant, infectious fusion of old jazz classics and thoroughly modern beatcraft.
'Unique and adrenaline-pumped' - The Upcoming
This Brit Award nominated singer-songwriter has charmed audiences across the world. Now she heads to Hay for what will undoubtedly be a spellbinding performance.
'One of Britain's brightest singer-songwriters' - Telegraph
This London singer-songwriter is already a BBC 6music favourite, and we reckon that a glimpse of him at HowTheLightGetsIn will make him your new songsmith of choice too.
'Unbelievably good' – Lauren Laverne
Badly Drawn Boy
Best known for his seminal album The Hour of the Bewilderbeest, a peerless career of major awards and minor incidents has turned Damon Gough into a bona fide British legend. We’re honoured to host him.
‘Splendid folk-pop melodies’ - Pitchfork
If you like your swing to stomp and your ska to kick like a mule, this Bristol six-piece are the band for you. Come down to their enigmatic, animated show and dance like you’re the grooviest belle at the ball.
‘Always something to behold’ – Bristol24/7
One of the nation’s best loved voices, ever since shooting to fame aged 14 as BBC Radio 2 Chorister of the Year, Laura Wright has built a reputation as one of the UK's top performers, and we can't wait to hear her unique blend of classical crossover and pop
'Show-stopping' - Telegraph
Tankus the Henge
This London combo are famous among Glastonbury audiences for their riotous melee of rock’n’roll, Louisiana blues and smokin’ soul. Now they make their return to HowTheLightGetsIn for an unmissable show.
‘A carnival atmosphere’ – Time Out
These international musical adventurers played their first gig in the Indian mountains, and have travelled far and wide stockpiling sounds to place in their unique brew of Balkan and Levantine traditions. Let’s give them a hearty Hay welcome.
Once a child star in Tim Burton’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Blair now plies his trade with an acoustic guitar and a golden voice. The BBC Folk Award winner will be making his second HowTheLightGetsIn appearance, and you won’t want to miss out.
‘Impressively Varied - Guardian
Local boy and Hay favourite Billy Rowan has made waves with his incredible 2017 album ‘Truth and Fiction’. Expect social and political commentary parcelled up in infectious & playful beats.
‘Insanely infectious’- Liverpool Sound and Vision.
Yumi and the Weather
Brighton scene veteran Ruby Taylor has been quietly pumping out yearning, ethereal indie rock for the last few years. We reckon her wavy seaside rhythms will keep the sun shining on Hay in May
‘Like Brighton beach if it could pick up a plectrum’ – Noisey
Patch and the Giant
Expect an eclectic take on folk music, awash with unique instrumentation and coruscating choruses, from this up-and-coming London outfit.
‘A rare degree of maturity in their work’ – Clash
Bristol mainstays since the ‘90s, Spiro count among their admirers such luminaries as Portishead and Peter Gabriel. Their extraordinary approach to composition and performance is sure to let some light into your weekend too.
‘Cinematic, breath-taking and beautiful’ – Songlines