How is Entertainment Used in Acts of Protest?

June 28, 2016

With the UK government seemingly in full panic mode over Brexit and the various consequences that the vote has taken, we’ve decided to look into various acts of protest for your consultation. Whether it will be protesting the outcome of the vote (remainers) or protesting the fact the government hasn’t yet invoked Article 50 (leavers), we can guarantee some of these acts may be useful to you.


Well, this is the most obvious one of the lot isn’t it? If you’re looking to protest then hiring a speaker is a brilliant idea to galvanise the supporters of your cause and perhaps convince others to join your line of thought. It may not be one of the most obvious entertainment acts to hire for a party, but when it comes to protesting an injustice, you don’t get much better than a speaker. Remember to bring along a megaphone for the photo opportunity but don’t give it to Delia Smith.


“Clowns?!” We hear you cry, "I hire circus entertainment but I wouldn't for a protest!" Well... Yes, clowns. Clowns are a legitimate form of protest and as we have covered in our Ooh, Interesting! fascinating facts blog over the past few months, they are used during time of great economic and political crisis. Clowns Without Borders appear wherever those who are currently struggling happen to reside. They may not be a direct form of protest but if Clowns Without Borders appear in your neighbourhood, then it’s very clear not everything is right with your part of the world.


This particular act of protest probably doesn’t need any explaining as people have been hiring costumes to aid in protest for who knows how long! Whether it be hordes of Scottish people turning up in Edinburgh dressed like Guantanamo Bay prisoners or Fathers 4 Justice dressing as superheroes as they scale a prominent landmark,  it’s clear that hiring a costume enhances your protest’s visibility amongst the general public.


Protest songs are perhaps the most well-known form of protest you can find in the world of entertainment. Hell, this is how Billy Bragg makes his living, whilst various musicians at Glastonbury added something political into their songs over the past weekend and Super Furry Animals frontman Gruff Rhys even wrote a song about his love of the EU. It doesn’t just have to be the artists who get political and protest either (we don’t need a Live Aid 3 or is it 4 now?), sometimes they are just willing bystanders as was seen when Rage Against the Machine got to Christmas number 1 (which also shows not all protests need to be that important).


As proven by the Secret Policeman’s Ball, comedians can protest things too. Technically that particular series of shows were charity fundraisers rather than protests, but Eddie Izzard still enjoys protesting for Labour and other issues in his spare time to this day. Comedians have also been seen at Live 8 and Live Earth (remember that one?) and comedy is also used in a variety of festivals around the world. For example, the town of Lewes often burn an effigy and last year they chose David Cameron with a pig. We can’t think why!

So if you're linking to protest soon - and there seem to be a great deal of the country who want to - then feel free to get in touch and make sure your concerns are heard.


Planning an event? Get in touch 

Here at Sternberg Clarke we know how to handle a challenge and we stop at nothing to ensure your event is a night – or day – to remember. Check out our create page and learn more about how we can customise your entertainment to match your needs.

Thinking about booking one of our many talented music acts? Visit our contact page and send us a message.

And Subscribe

Alternatively, if you simply want some inspiration, tips or thoughts on event entertainment, stay updated on our bloglike us on Facebookenjoy us on Instagram and follow us on Twitter.

By Henry Fosdike