2016's been a pretty good year for the arts

With political chaos creating as many headlines as it did headaches, how did the soothing arts world react?

2016's been a pretty good year for the arts

Making 2016 possibly the most unfortunate year ever were the overwhelming amount of deaths, with 1 million famous people kicking the glittery bucket. We said goodbye to the legends that were David Bowie, Alan Rickman, Prince amongst others. We could take some consolation in assuming that many stars were born this year due to 2016 taking many greats.

Image result for drake rihanna vmas gif


Spotify's statistics revealed that Drake was the most listened to artist in 2016. Drake Vader should be a thing as his hit 'One Dance' was streamed 970 million times, triple the size of the population of the USA. Thus making Drake the most listened to artist in Spotify history, with 8.7 billion streams. Public friendzone humiliation at the VMAS = not so rocking. Rihanna's 'Work' paid off, making her the top streamed female artist on Spotify, with 3 million streams,

Interestingly, one person in Los Angeles listened to 'Panda' for two weeks and sadly at least one in three people listened to 'Sorry' whilst sobbing on repeat on Valentine's Day. Sorry.

Image result for beyonce lemonade no copyright

Beyonce slayed (as always), dropping her visual album 'Lemonade', outshining Bruno Mars at the Silver Bowl... whilst her sister Solange dropped her own awesome album. The scary thing is we haven't even seen the full extent of what these sisters can do...

Sadly, the Brownstock Festival closed after 12 years. Cry cry.


Image result for leonardo dicaprio memes

RIP Leo memes as Mr DiCaprio, finally (after a ubiquitous publicity campaign about putting his safety out there to get into character) won the Oscar for Best Actor for 'The Revenant'.

There were parties around London to countdown the moments to his success. Personally, Channing Tatum's tap dance in 'Hail, Caesar!' was much more entertaining.

Amongst a sea of remakes and sea-quels, 'The Jungle Book', 'Finding Dory' and 'Ghostbusters' it's fair to say the industry is still lacking ideas.

Lest we forget, #RIPBrangelina broke the Internet.


Theatre world did not disappoint. Shakespeare 400 took the whole country by storm - street parties were held and the BBC broadcasted a fantastic tribute to the Bard complete with royalty chiming in. The RSC's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' was a co-production with the RSC and amateur companies around the UK, touring 12 different venues as part of #Dream16. Hamilton and RENT announced their UK screenings in 2017, totally wiping our thespian bank balances and The Lion King Musical owned the 360 degree experience online. The bright young things at the National Youth Theatre produced my favourite show all year of 'Pigeon English'. Bumping into Sir Ian McKellen at the theatre, in normal casual clothes, was also mindboggling.

2016 you did not disappoint, but I have to say that the genius graphic designer who created Pokemon Go, in July, has really obscured my memory regarding the whole year. Let it die down so we can be prepared for 2017 (and not have to exercise, ew).

Image composite courtesy of Flickr/cathboblet, Flickr/thespeakernews, Flickr/anamakingon, and Flickr/hansthijs


Kheira Bey

Kheira Bey Contributor

A very busy bee in the arts world. Kheira is an actress, living and working in London and loves anything fresh in the world of theatre, film and art. She works across theatre and film, and is trying to get better at watering her plant collection. She has previously contributed to: Voice Magazine, The Everyday, The Sun and Good Morning Britain; and is passionate about championing female narratives and new work. Arts Award Activist 2016/17 and Vaults Festival fanatic.

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  • Emrys Green

    On 24 December 2016, 14:38 Emrys Green Voice Team commented:

    Thanks for the roundup Kheira!

  • Sienna James

    On 6 January 2017, 13:21 Sienna James Voice Team commented:

    Loved this low-down, 2016 was a year of highlights for the arts! :)

  • Luke Taylor

    On 11 January 2017, 14:01 Luke Taylor Contributor commented:

    The arts always provides a form of escapism. Great round-up :)

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