The CultureJukebox team are always reporting in new developments in art and tech – so great to hear about We Are Now coming to London in September, a live events that explores the creative use of technology in the performing arts to create sensory experiences for audiences.
The team showcase emerging companies alongside established names to offer a platform to artists pushing the boundaries of their specialism, to develop their work and professional networks and pioneer new methods of immersive experience.
The September event takes place on the 1st & 2nd and is an eclectic programme of boundary pushing theatre by the best of emerging and established companies, free interactive installations, 1-1 immersive virtual reality performance, an interactive audio theatre adventure and an arresting and electric late night show that harnesses the sonic capabilities of the Tesla Coil.
The intersection of art and technology is one of the most interesting creative spaces – so great to hear about progressive new performance WHIST coming to London this month and then touring the UK.
‘WHIST’, created by dance company AΦE, is a new production combining VR with interactive promenade theatre. WHIST incorporates 360˚ interactive film, soundscapes and an architectural art installation to create an environment that blurs all boundaries – between consciousness and unconsciousness, reality and fiction, the physical and the virtual.
Inspired by Sigmund Freud’s dream theory, WHIST invites audiences on a journey into the unconscious mind, where instincts will be the guide through a narrative of surreal dreams and fears. And you, or your subconscious, choose your own path.
The performance incorporates 360˚ interactive film, soundscapes and an architectural art installation to create an environment that blurs all boundaries – between consciousness and unconsciousness, reality and fiction, the physical and the virtual.
Using interactive ‘triggers’ positioned in the virtual world by its makers, WHIST allows for a total of 76 narrative possibilities to exist, creating a unique experience for each viewer. No simple ‘red pill vs. blue pill’ format, WHIST implements interactive elements, subtly woven into the film to effect unconscious decision making.
According to the team behind the show, this puts the production at the very forefront of immersive storytelling innovation – leaving the strings that bind and pull at all times invisible. You, or your subconscious, choose your own path.
So, what are the upcoming dates?
Ugly Duck – London
23-25 June 2017
Pavilion Dance South West – Bournemouth
3-4 July 2017
Colours International Dance Festival – Stuttgart, Germany
6 – 15 July 2017
Festival Theatre – Edinburgh
21st July – 3rd August 2017
The Old Market – Brighton
19-20 September 2017
(further dates to be confirmed)
Check the website for more information: http://www.aoiesteban.com/whist/
Fantastic news for East Londoners who love progressive new writing and theatre – HighTide Festival is coming to our capital.
The Suffolk festival celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2016, and later this year makes its debut in Walthamstow in a temporary theatre space in partnership with Waltham Forest Council.
HighTide Theatre will present two world premiere productions in 2017, Heroine by Nessah Muthy (Host) directed by the Festival’s Artistic Director Steven Atkinson and comic dramaKanye The First by Sam Steiner (Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons, Lemons) directed by HighTide Theatre Associate Director Andrew Twyman. A co-production with Theatre Clwyd, Muthy’s devastating exploration of patriotism and nativism in modern Britain follows young ex-soldier Grace as she struggles to reassimilate into society following a medical discharge from the army. Steiner’s first commissioned, and highly original, play will chart the second coming of global pop icon Kanye West. The play takes a timely look at identity and guilt in contemporary culture. Kanye The First is a co-production between HighTide Theatre and Paul Jellis in association with The Marlowe and The North Wall. Alongside these productions Theresa Ikoko’sGirls, joint winner of the George Devine Award (2016), the Alfred Fagon Award (2015), is set to return. Telling the tale of three young friends who are kidnapped in Nigeria, Ikoko wrote Girls to highlight the stories behind the headlines that quickly become yesterday’s news. Girls is a co-production between HighTide Theatre, Talawa Theatre Company and Martha Rose Wilson.
“This year we’re focused on what HighTide Theatre is renowned for: commissioning bold and timely plays from the best new writers. We look forward to developing and previewing these world premiere productions in our beautiful home of Aldeburgh, and then for the first time bringing the whole festival to Walthamstow, alongside showcasing work by local artists. This new producing model for HighTide Theatre of two festivals allows us to take risks and continue to develop our productions with the input of our audiences in Aldeburgh. And then our new partnership with Waltham Forest Council and the National Theatre enables us to bring our fully formed productions all together to Greater London, where they can be seen by a wider and diverse community who would like a greater cultural provision in their area.” ~ Steven Atkinson, Artistic Director of HighTide Theatre
It will be in Walthamstow town centre for 12 days after its Aldeburgh season, bringing an eclectic arts programme to an area of London. The programmes in both locations will include three headline plays (two of which are world premieres) and a programme of comedy, cabaret, talks and music.
The Walthamstow Festival will run 26 September – 8 October with Press Nights on 26 & 27 September.
“Waltham Forest Council is delighted to be partnering with HighTide Theatre for the first time this year. Whilst the borough has a thriving cultural scene we do not have any bespoke theatres and a recent survey of residents showed that this was the cultural provision they felt was most lacking. By bringing the Festival to Walthamstow Town Centre we are able to provide theatre right on residents’ doorsteps. Some of our talented local artists are included in the programme and a number of our young people will have the chance to gain first-hand experience of a professional theatre. We’re proud that our borough is home to one of the most diverse populations in the country and it’s of the utmost importance to us that our cultural programme reflects this diversity. We’re sure that the range of shows on offer will appeal to a wide cross-section of our residents. We also look forward to welcoming visitors from far and wide to experience Waltham Forest’s creative buzz.” ~ Lorna Lee, Head of Culture & Heritage, Waltham Forest Council
Free or discounted tickets will be available to those with a Waltham Forest postcode and HighTide Theatre will be working to help young people find routes into creative roles, in collaboration with local organisation Big Creative Training, hosting a traineeship and work experience placements. The full programme in Walthamstow will include a late night comedy and cabaret strand, a series of talks, a site-specific production,Mobile, and a strand of work showcasing and supporting local creative talent. The comedy line-up is set to include: Phil Wang, Suzi Ruffell, Dane Baptiste, Tez Ilyas and Jayde Adams. Cabaret and music artists include Joe Stilgoe who will perform Songs on Film, The Beatbox Collective and an exclusive preview of new music from Arthur Darvill.
As regular readers will already know, the CultureJukebox team grew up close to Hull – so it’s been great to see the energy of the city be unleashed throughout this year. And a press release about theatre outfit Middle Child piqued our interest further..
All We Ever Wanted Was Everything opens at the wonderful Welly nightclub in Hull on 6 June 2017. If you’ve never been to the Welly, it’s one of the city’s very best clubs. The home of a lot of indie, alternative culture and the odd lost night out or two.
So, whats the show all about? It’s “gig theatre”, which means it’s a fusion of live music, theatre performance and an immersive experience. It mixes original live music from James Frewer with bold new writing from Luke Barnes.
This three-act anthem, set across three decades, from 1997’s Cool Britannia to 2007’s Broken Britain and today’s Brexit Britain, is a story about the world we inherited and the one we’re leaving behind.
The story follows two young people from Hull over 20 years as they struggle to realise their hopes and ambitions, against the backdrop of an asteroid heading for Earth. Alice Beaumont performs behind a Daft Punk-inspired mask as The Asteroid in the production, using synths and drum machines to give the character a distinct electronic music sound, in contrast to the guitar-based music of the human characters. James Frewer also performs live on stage alongside the actors, playing guitar and keyboard.
The show is from the creative minds of Hull-based theatre company Middle Child. Check out the website for more on the music, the story, and to buy tickets (they start at £8, and there are concessions too).
The All We Ever Wanted Was Everything EP features original electronic music written by James Frewer and arranged with Alice Beaumont. The EP is a great idea, introducing the audience to the characters and themes from the show.
James said: “One of the sole reasons you go to a gig is to hear the band or DJ’s big tunes and so we thought we’d get on it and release some of the tracks from All We Ever Wanted Was Everything before the event. “The character of The Asteroid in this show has her own techno vibe so we thought we would release the majority of her songs as a concept EP, detailing the journey of her view on humanity, from the euphoria of its possibility to her broken hearted execution of the planet. “We want people to play this EP loud, have a dance to it and then come along to hear it live at Welly this June.”
This sounds awesome, check out the show website here.
The CultureJukebox team are huge fans of the Battersea Arts Centre’s creative and forward-thinking programming, and it’s great to hear about a brilliant sounding new show – Songs For The End Of The World.
The production is unique blend of sci-fi, comic-book thinking and concept album; all inspired by Philip K Dick’s post-apocalyptic novel Dr.Bloodmoney and the futuristic star-gazing world of Ziggy Stardust
A link to more information on the show is here. And here is what the flyer has to say:
Welcome to New Albion, a near-future post-brexit, austerity Britain, owned and controlled by mega-corporation New Global. While some predict a Biblical Armageddon, many are simply preparing for the end.
When the apocalypse arrives, hapless astronaut Jim Walters is suspended in orbit on his journey to another life on Mars, broadcasting his songs for the end of the world back to a silent Earth, in the hope that someone might hear…
Promising a music gig meeting epic theatre, it’s from the genius mind of theatre-maker Dom Coyote and his high-octane band the Bloodmoneys.
Dom Coyote has written and performed music for some of the UK’s most exciting theatre companies. A long standing collaborator with Kneehigh Theatre, he performed in Battersea Arts Centre’s Grand Hall in the epic Don Jon as well as in Cymbeline (RSC) and A Matter of Life and Death (National Theatre).
The Bloodmoneys have toured and recorded with Scissor Sisters, Beth Orton, Gary Numan, Goldfrapp and Tinie Tempah. Check out the trailer and book tickets on the BAC website here.