Launched in 2014, Twisterella Festival is the creation of Middlesbrough’s most dynamic and forward thinking independent music promoters, Pay for the Piano and The Kids Are Solid Gold.

Centred around the University area of town on Linthorpe Road & Southfield Road, the 1000 capacity metropolitan festival utilises established music venues such as Teesside University Students’ Union, The Townhouse, TSOne and The Westgarth Social Club, along with pop-up sessions in some of the town’s coolest bars.

Nominated in the best ‘New Festival On The Block’ category in both the 2015 and 2016 AIF Festival Congress Awards, Twisterella is designed to showcase the brightest emerging national and international music talent, as well as give a platform to a select number of local and regional acts who are ready to make the step up to the big stage. Acts who’ve previously played include Clean Cut Kid, Spring King, Fickle Friends, Eliza and the Bear, Prides, Fatherson, Black Honey, Cattle & Cane, Beach Baby, Frankie & The Heartstrings, Jake Isaac, Du Blonde, WHITE, Sweet Baboo, Menace Beach, Hyde & Beast and PINS, to name but a few.

Eliza and the Bear photo by Lauren Close
Eliza and the Bear at Twisterella 2014. Photo by Lauren Close.

In addition to the live acts, Twisterella features an (Un)Conference with the focus on bringing key music industry figures to the town to share their expertise and offer advice to new and developing Teesside musicians.

Twisterella (Un)Conference 2016. Photo by Nick Wesson.

The promoters involved in Twisterella both have a long history of attracting breaking acts to the region, having previously secured Teesside shows from the likes of Mumford & Sons, Wolf Alice, Alt-J, The 1975, The Vaccines, James Bay, Catfish & The Bottlemen, Palma Violets, Frank Turner, First Aid Kit, Daughter, Pulled Apart By Horses, Drenge, Keaton Henson, Temples and many more earlier in their careers.

Fickle Friends at Twisterella 2015. Photo by Lauren Close.