Heads up: Meltdown

Holy festival! It's the caped crusader of future feminism!

What are we talking about? The Southbank's annual musical festival, guest curated each year: for 2012, Antony gets to pick his favourites.

Elevator pitch Future feminism from Antony and pals.

Prime movers Antony, who hails from the New York avant-garde art scene but is best known as the vocalist in Antony and the Johnsons.

The stars It's a predictably eclectic line-up, from Lou Reed to Marc Almond. Antony himself performs with the Japanaese Kazuo Ohno Dance Studio. Don't miss brilliant sister duo CocoRosie, or other fierce females Joan as Police Woman with Matteah Baim. Plus, there are two very rare shows from former Cocteau Twin Elizabeth Fraser. One ticket is so hot it's not yet on sale: artist Marina Abramovic delivers a "lecture for women". Or join Kim Cattrall, Janet Suzman and Jude Kelly in conversation about Cleopatra. There's more exploration of "modern femininity" with the UK premiere of Turning, Antony and video artist Charles Atlas's film.

The early buzz Website The Quietus said it was "set to feature a very impressive selection of names indeed" while Pitchfork summed up an interview with Antony as follows: "Most of his conversation with us revolved around the idea that the artists represent something bigger – they each offer uncompromising, bold visions that challenge complacency and societal roles."

Insider knowledge Marc Almond will be performing the 1983 album Torment and Toreros – it was on this record that Antony first heard a cover of Lou Reed's "Caroline Says", a track which 20 years later he would reprise with Reed himself.

It's great that ... there's a strident feminist theme here, with Antony declaring: "I am among a group of artists... who reject patriarchy in its myriad virulent and apocalyptic manifestations, and who advocate a fundamental shift towards the feminine in all our systems... We have named this approach Future Feminism." Erm, hurrah!

It's a shame that ... although it's part of the London 2012 Festival, the sheer volume of stuff under that umbrella may mean the festival is actually less prominent than usual.

Hit potential A hit for those who already revere these artists, but unlikely to pick up passing trade.

The details Meltdown is at the Southbank Centre, London SE1 (southbankcentre.co.uk) 1 to 12 Aug.

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