Launched in 2014, Twisterella Festival is the creation of Middlesbrough based independent music promoters The Kids Are Solid Gold and Pay for the Piano.

Centred around Teesside University, the award-winning multi-venue metropolitan music festival utilises established venues on Linthorpe Road & Southfield Road 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 in nearby Baker Street and Bedford Street.

In 2019, Twisterella won an AIF Independent Festival Award for its ‘forward thinking bookings‘, reflecting the event’s track record in showcasing the brightest emerging national and international talent, as well as giving a platform to a select number of local and regional acts who are ready to make the step up to the big stage.

In addition to the Independent Festival Award, both Pay For The Piano and The Kids Are Solid Gold are regular nominees in the ‘Indie Promoter Of The Year (Local Impact)‘ category in Live UK’s annual Live Music Business Awards. Furthermore, TKASG’s Andy Carr was nominated for the prestigious Indie Champion Award in the AIM Awards 2017.

Acts who’ve previously played at Twisterella include: Sam Fender, Clean Cut Kid, Spring King, Boy Azooga, Fickle Friends, Avalanche Party, The Blinders, Estrons, Eliza and the Bear, Bryde, Vistas, Prides, Fatherson, Black Honey, Cattle & Cane, The Snuts, Dream Wife, Dylan Cartlidge, Plastic Mermaids, Frankie & The Heartstrings, Jake Isaac, Vistas, Du Blonde, WHITE, Sweet Baboo, Neon Waltz, Pom Poko, Menace Beach, LIFE, Bloxx, Skinny Girl Diet and PINS, to name but a few.

Mouses by Andy Lochrie
Mouses at Twisterella 2015

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. Previous panellists have included Vic Galloway (BBC Scotland), Kieron Donoghue (Humble Angel), Simon Pursehouse (Sentric), Helen Hammill (Cattle & Cane), Bob Fischer (BBC Tees), Claire Dupree (NARC. Magazine), Emily Pilbeam (BBC Introducing), Tom Cotton (Absolute Radio), Rianne Kate Thompson (BBC Introducing/Amazing Radio) and Oliver Jones (Deer Shed Festival).

The promoters involved in Twisterella 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, VANT, Temples, The Amazons and many more earlier in their careers.

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Fickle Friends at Twisterella 2015. Photo by Lauren Close.

Click here to read reviews of previous Twisterellas.