As I was flipping through my favourite mag last night, something made me stop and stare. No, it wasn’t the photo of Kim K’s new baby (it’s essentially just Kanye in a nappy – calm down, world.) It was the news that the iconic Brighton Festival will be celebrating its 50th anniversary in May this year, and the acts are set to be bolder, brighter and more bombastic than ever before!

The Brighton Festival was one of the most important developments of 1960’s Brighton. The first ever festival ran from 14th to 30th April 1967 and had an ‘all-seeing eye’ as its logo. On opening night there was an international wine festival, a visit from the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra and a gay arts ball at the Hilton. So Brighton.

This year’s annual celebration will consist of music, circus, theatre, dance, art, film and literature, taking place in venues both familiar and unusual. The festival will also run alongside the Brighton Fringe, celebrating its 10th anniversary, so there will be plenty to feast your eyes on.

Photo courtesy of It's Nice That, design by Johnson Banks

I’m particularly looking forward to ‘The Complete Deaths’, performed by physical comedy company Spymonkey and directed by Tim Crouch. Spymonkey will re-enact every onstage death from the works of William Shakespeare in a comical and often poignant tribute to mark the 400th anniversary of his death. With so many anniversaries happening at once, I suppose it makes sense to stick ‘em all together in one stupendous event, right?

Johnson Banks has designed the Brighton Festival identity. The designs use a monochrome palette and a distinct logotype that blends the ‘F’ of the word ‘Festival’ with the word ‘Fifty’. Not as good as the sheep, but I can’t deny it delivers an impact.

What do you think of the new design? Are you looking forward to any acts this year, or perhaps you’re starring in one yourself? Send us a comment or a Tweet – we’d love to hear from you.