Things To Do

Jason Allen 18/08/23

HowTheLightGetsIn 2023

HowTheLightGetsIn 2023 | A festival of philosophy & music

HowTheLightGetsIn is officially the world’s largest philosophy & music festival.

Really makes you think.

And dance.

But aside from being a perfect opportunity to ask why it takes two to tango, it’s also got a whole lot of comedy, food, workshops, and other stuff on offer too. It’s all going down across a September weekend in the idyllic Kenwood Gardens up on the edge of Hampstead Heath, where you can look down on the rest of London (strictly in the literal sense) from their magnificent, bunting-strewn micro-village of tents, stages, al fresco areas, pop-up bars and street food stalls.

All in all, there’ll be a tidy 150 speakers & performers, ranging from theoretical physicists, to comedians, to Mercury Prize winning musicians. And of course, that’s on top of the long table banquets, pop up bars, philosophy breakfasts, street food, cabaret, and massive amounts of other stuff.

Having established a pretty decent reputation for themselves as Europe’s answer to TED Talks, HTLGI has gathered an impressive line-up of speakers. Taking a seat in their festoon-lit bell tents, you’ll be able to hear thought-provoking insights from political commentator Alistair Campbell; to comedian & campaigner Ruby Wax; science superstar Sabine Hossenfelder; Ukranian MP Inna Sovsun; theoretical physicist Michio Kaku; author & comedian David Baddiel; and literally dozens and dozens more, including neuroscientists, AI researchers, a poker champion a professor of ageing, a cutting-edge chemist, and at least one nihilist. Honestly, the list is absolutely stacked with mind-blowing thinkers.

But you won’t be expected to just sit back and listen, no siree. You can get personally involved by joining the eccentric Hat Sessions (where you can ask speakers about the big topics), engaging in a philosophy breakfast, or taking part in an idea-driven, four-course long table banquet.

As the sun begins to set, all thoughts of politics and philosophy are put to bed, and the festival’s lively evening programme gets going. This year there’s over a dozen musical acts headlined by Badly Drawn Boy; standup comedy from the award winning The Guilty Feminist Podcast host Deborah Frances-White, Jonny Pelham, Josh Weller, John Tothill and more; a cosy cinema tent screening documentaries; and dazzling, tinsel-tasselled political cabaret from the award-winning Abigail Collins.

how the light gets in

Finally, you can fill any remaining spare seconds of your time perusing the street food market and pop-up bars…

…where you’ll inevitably find that great minds drink alike.


FINISHED PERK: Nudge Members got 35% off all tickets to HowTheLightsGetIn 2023.

NOTE: HowTheLightGetsIn 2023 takes place on the 23rd & 24th of September on Hampstead Heath. You can find out more, and book tickets right HERE

Kenwood House | Hampstead Lane, Highgate, NW3 7JR

Looking for a culture fix? Check out our guide to The Best London Theatre Shows on now

HowTheLightGetsIn 2023

Kenwood House, Hampstead Heath, Hampstead, NW3 7JR