New line-up additions: Samantha Morton, Stanley Tucci + more!

With just a month to go now until we welcome you all to Port Eliot, we’re very excited to announce the latest group of artists that will appear on stages across the ancient St Germans site.


British actress and director Samantha Morton

Starting things off with a treat, outstanding British actress and director Samantha Morton will be in conversation on the Friday, leading off with discussion of her directorial debut, The Unloved, which was inspired by her experiences of the care system as a child. The film will be given a special screening in Port Eliot’s magnificent Round Room on Saturday. Also expect tales of work on film, TV and stage in the likes of Synecdoche, New York, In America, Morvern Caller, Control, Minority Report and Sweet and Lowdown, and encounters with David Cronenberg, Charlie Kaufman, Anton Corbijn, Michael Winterbottom, Steven Spielberg, Lyn Ramsay and Woody Allen.

Continuing the top-flight Hollywood glory, we’re delighted to welcome Academy Award nominee Stanley Tucci to Cornwall. Star of many films, including Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Transformers: The Last Knight and The Lovely Bones, Stanley Tucci also played Caesar Flickerman in The Hunger Games. He was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for Children, for “The One and Only Shrek” which he will deliver at the festival.

Stanley Tucci, Berlinale 2017, photographed by Gerhard Kassner

And now, another Port Eliot special; Michael C. Hall, star of Lazarus, the musical written by David Bowie and Enda Walsh, will come to the festival for a conversation with the show’s celebrated co-producer, Robert Fox. The pair will share experiences of working with Bowie to create the musical, in a conversation peppered with film clips. Aside from Lazarus, Michael C. Hall has starred in the likes of Dexter, Six Feet Under and this year’s Christine with Rebecca Hall.

Now, two brilliant additions to the music line-up in the oldest church in all of Cornwall. Highly-acclaimed singer-songwriter Karen Elson, whose second LP, Double Roses, was released earlier this year, will perform in the Church on Thursday. A personal look back on life, Double Roses is considered by Elson her ‘post-divorce album’. Previously one of the world’s most recognisable supermodels, Karen Elson is no musical newcomer and the Church performance promises to be a true early highlight.


Highly-acclaimed singer-songwriter Karen Elson will be playing The Church on Thursday.

Also in the Church, 21-year-old Holly Macve has a voice that is likely to stop you in your tracks. Her debut LP, Golden Eagle, was Rough Trade’s Album of the Month on release in March this year and her live performances are something to behold. We won’t quibble with the declaration from NPR that ‘2017 will be the year the world falls in love with the voice of Holly Macve’.

Back on the Bowling Green stage, a ‘60s-and-beyond great: countercultural artist, designer and founder of the enduringly influential Kings Road boutique, Granny Takes a Trip, Nigel Waymouth will recall the Summer of Love. Haunted by The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd, the Chelsea boutique became a renegade emblem of the capital. Nigel will be in conversation with artist Richard Adams on the Bowling Green stage.

One of BBC News’ best known presenters and reporters, Emily Maitlis covered the 2016 US presidential election campaign in depth on the ground and both the election and the inauguration of Donald Trump in New York and Washington. Emily was named 2016 Broadcast Journalist of the Year at the London Press Awards. She will be joined on the Park Stage by esteemed BBC comedy producer and creator of QI, John Lloyd, to discuss her experiences of witnessing the ways of Trump at close range and we wouldn’t be at all surprised if they get on to our own recent election too.

In Notes from Grace Land, the life, work and all-round specialness of Grace Jones will be celebrated by a trio of people with their own perspectives on the art-music marvel. Film maker Sophie Fiennes directed new documentary Grace Jones: Bloodlight and Bami (and will preview clips from the film); writer, broadcaster and cultural commentator Paul Morley collaborated with Grace Jones on her recent book, I’ll Never Write My Memoirs; and Port Eliot’s own Louis Eliot has toured across the world playing guitar in Grace Jones’s band for several years. This promises to be an eye-opener.

Explorer, campaigner, film-maker and writer, Bruce Parry, will be in conversation on Saturday afternoon on The Park. Hugely respected for his campaigning for the rights of indigenous people, the presenter of hit BBC series The Tribe and Amazon will be discussing his directorial debut TAWAI – A Voice from the Forest, to be released this autumn. Bruce’s explorations of places on the environmental frontline have given him a broad perspective of our place on the planet.

18th century Paris is the setting for The Crocodile of Old Kang Pow, an experimental afro-beat, ska and classical opera from composer Darren Berry, a renowned west London figure and stalwart of such bands as the Penguin Café Orchestra, Razorlight and The Trojans. An emasculated Marquis De Sade is the protagonist in a production which will present an intoxicating musical blend of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, Fela Kuti, Sam Cooke, Gershwin, Kurt Weill and much more. Port Eliot’s audience will be tempted with excerpts from the opera on The Ace of Clubs stage.

See the full festival line-up here.