Drive-in cinema, theatre and music

Image of sea with waves from above.
Wavelength Drive-in Cinema will be at Watergate Bay, near Newquay.

As reported previously (see Spend summer at the drive-in), 2020 looks set to be the summer of the drive-in movie. Fiona Horan follows up with a look at some more cinema drive-ins around the country, as well as a few drive-in live performances to enjoy.

Celluloid sensations

Edinburgh International Film Festival and Unique Events, the team behind the capital’s Film Fest in the City outdoor cinema, have joined Edinburgh Airport to produce a new monthly event for cinema fans throughout the rest of 2020. There will be four screenings a day starting with children’s entertainment in the morning, family favourites in the afternoon, an evening blockbuster and a late-night screening of cult classics. There will also be special Halloween and Christmas screenings.

Down in Cornwall, locals and visitors can enjoy a new clifftop drive-in cinema experience, overlooking the sea near Newquay. With space for over 200 cars and vans, The Wavelength Drive-In Cinema Series will start in mid-July and will be presenting a programme of cult classic movie nights through to the end of August.  Individual or ‘bubbled car’ bookings can be made, and street food, live music, a socially distanced tombola, popcorn stands and craft beer bars will be available to enjoy on-site.

Meanwhile, the Luna Drive-in Cinema, which I included in a previous article, has expanded its venues to include Tatton Park in Cheshire, Harewood House near Leeds, and Printworks, East London. More venues are still to come.

Live shows

Hit show Six the Musical will have drive-in performances in 12 locations from August. Three hundred vehicles can attend each show with a maximum of seven people allowed per car. There will be a space next to each vehicle for revellers to picnic and party. The musical is a modern retelling of the lives of the six wives of Henry VIII presented as a pop concert, as the wives take turns singing and telling their story. It originally emerged from the Edinburgh fringe.

The destinations of the tour are Milton Keynes, Liverpool, Leeds, Bolton, Teesside, Bristol, Cheltenham, Edinburgh, Newmarket, Birmingham and London.

Six the Musical is one act in the programme of the not-very-snappily-named Utilita Live From The Drive-In. The company has an extensive series of live drive-in concerts, theatre shows, comedy and family science shows in 12 venues across the U.K. Stars like Gary Numan, The Streets, K T Tunstall, Beverley Knight, Kaiser Chiefs and Tony Hadley will be performing live on stage backed by a full concert production. Audiences can experience the entertainment from the comfort and safety of their designated area, with each vehicle appropriately distanced from one another. 

Another live performance recently announced is GALS ALOUD – the first ever UK drive-in drag show. The show will take place at Troubadour Meridian Water on 22nd August and will be a full-length musical extravaganza, live on stage alongside a giant screen, with sound transmitted directly into audience members’ car radios.