The festival again takes over Jodrell Bank this July with a unique mix of music, science and culture

bluedot has announced that Björk, Groove Armada, Metronomy and astronaut Tim Peake will headline its fifth instalment. The festival will return to Cheshire’s iconic Jodrell Bank this summer: bringing its unique blend of music, science and culture to the observatory from 23rd to 26th July.

One of the most influential and ground-breaking musicians of all time, Icelandic singer-songwriter Björk will close bluedot with an exclusive festival performance alongside Manchester’s famed Halle Orchestra, featuring incredible bespoke projections on the Lovell Telescope. 

Topping the bill alongside them are indie-electro giants Metronomy. Following rave reviews for their latest studio album Metronomy Forever, the electropop pioneers will take to the main stage on Saturday to deliver a wonky nu-disco set chock full of dancefloor masterpieces and crowd pleasers.  

2020 02 12 Metronomy
Metronomy headline bluedot on Saturday

The final music headliner is legendary dance duo Groove Armada, whose career spans over 20 years of chart-topping hits like Superstylin and I See You Baby. They’ll launch proceedings on Friday night with a festival opener like no other.  

The first science headliner for bluedot 2020 has also been revealed - Tim Peake, the first British ESA astronaut to visit the International Space Station. The best-selling author and STEM ambassador will be speaking at this year’s festival, with more details to be revealed in the coming weeks.

2020 02 12 Groove Armada
Groove Armada will kickstart the festival on Friday

Other confirmed acts include psychedelic space rockers Spiritualized, disco diva Roisin Murphy, techno fusionist Squarepusher, electronic/ambient originals Tangerine Dream, reborn indie experimentalists Ride, Daniel Avery, EOB (the new solo project of Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien), Seth Troxler’s new Lost Souls of Saturn project, HAAI, BC Camplight, Anna Meredith, Henge, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, Pussy Riot, BCUC, Sinkane, Chk Chk Chk, Tourist, Pongo, Tim Burgess, The Lovely Eggs, Fatoumata Diawara, A Certain Ratio, Onipa, Lanterns On The Lake, Rosie Lowe, Homoelectric  Nihiloxica,  All We Are, Melt Yourself Down and Psychedelic Porn Crumpets.   

Elsewhere on the line-up are electronic legends 808 State, deep house specialists Crazy P, A Guy Called Gerald, Oh My God! It’s The Church, Liz Lawrence, Dry Cleaning, Los Bitchos, Just Mustard, Julia Bardo, Black Futures, Mark Radcliffe’s UNE, Porridge Radio, Intergalactic The Republic of Kongo, Plastic Mermaids, Lazarus Kane, Holodrum, Sinead O’Brien, Ttrruuces, The Goa Express, Otis Mensah, Robin Richards, The Starlight Magic Hour and Indian Queens.

2020 02 12 808 State
808 State are on the line-up

bluedot’s late night parties return by popular demand, with DJ Yoda presents Stranger Things leading the bill; mixing samples from the blockbuster Netflix series with 1983 hits from Dolly Parton and Joy Division, Toto to The Clash. Also announced is Manchester four-piece Henge, Too Many Man,  DJ Acid Rephlux,  Regal Disco, DJ Riv, Princess Leia & Han Solo’s Wedding Disco, Discolypso, Good Afternoon DJ’s and  DJ Fallback bringing some deep space disco to the festival.

As for bluedot’s culture and science programme, full details will be disclosed in the spring. Organisers have revealed a small taster, however, including Dot Talks: a popular staple that sees eminent speakers discuss some of the most cutting-edge topics of our time. Subjects this year will include futurology, consciousness, artificial intelligence and the depths of space via astrophysics and astronomy. 

2020 02 12 Tim Peake
Tim Peake will speak at this year’s festival

Other arts and culture highlights include Celebrating 42: Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy Live, a stage show featuring series performers and producers, written especially for bluedot; Is David Bowie a God?, a comedic musical exploration of the legend’s messianic status; and the Pankhurst Sessions, a programme of talks and panels plus screening curated by Helen Pankhurst - activist and great grand-daughter of Suffragettes leader Emmeline.

Further performances include Phil Jupitus, the festival’s artist-in-residence, and Adam Buxton; the British comedian, actor and director known for his appearances in films such as Hot Fuzz, Stardust and Son of Rambow plus his namesake podcast.  

2018 04 05 Bluedot
bluedot has plenty for families too

A raft of family-friendly entertainment is yet to be announced, but confirmed so far is an ‘intergalactic’ kids’ rave with Big Fish Little Fish; a dedicated Big Bang Stage; lightsabre Jedi training; and the Luminarium, a sensory illuminated inflatable dome. There will also be an enormous range of science-focused activities, workshops and live experiments across the Star Fields.

The Star Fields will also come alive after dark, when spectacular projections illuminate the towering Lovell Telescope; as will the Outer Space area, featuring an expanded fire garden and a host of sonic sculptures.

bluedot takes place at Jodrell Bank Observatory from 23rd to 26th July. Tickets go onsale at 10am on Friday 14th February  

About bluedot

Entering its fifth year, bluedot is an award-winning independent festival by From the Fields - owners and organisers of Kendal Calling and Off the Record - and Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre. With a mission of providing amazing, challenging and entertaining content for all the family, bluedot fuses an incredible mix of artists, speakers, scientists and performers into an event unlike any on earth.

bluedot 2020 is the fifth chapter of the ground-breaking festival - which has seen headline performances from the likes of Kraftwerk 3-D, New Order, The Chemical Brothers, Pixies, The Flaming Lips, Underworld and Jean-Michel Jarre, plus high-profile talks from Brian Cox, Helen Sharman, Alice Roberts and Richard Dawkins.


Read more: Manchester's essential festival calendar: January to April 2020