Credits – Photo: Steve Tanner, Fire Sculpture: Sue Hill/Pete Hill
On Monday 5th December, Wild-Workers from near and far came together to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of WildWorks. Gathered at the cliff-top location of Mount Pleasant Ecological Park in Porthtowan, Cornwall, considered friends and family of the company raised a glass to the vibrant and successful past of WildWorks, with a big nod to an exciting future.
When Emma Rice was appointed the new artistic director of the Globe a year ago I applauded their vision, trust and bravery. I thought it a perfect combination. What an adventure for both parties, Emma and the Globe. So many beautiful, funny and unique productions that would blossom over the years, blurring the divide between audience and players, capturing the true spirit of the Elizabethan playhouse.
I have to declare an interest here as I worked with Emma on many productions at Kneehigh including Tristan and Yseult; that will be seen next year in what is now Emma’s last year at the Globe. Emma is thrilling to work with – a brilliant contemporary theatre maker full of ideas, energy and honesty. In her interview she would have been completely open about who she is and how she works. The board appointed her knowing everything. So why has the Globe board withdrawn their support of their chosen artistic director in such an embarrassingly short time and after such a scorchingly successful opening season?
Bill Mitchell, WildWorks
We are sat on the cliff top at Lady’s Parlour, Hastings.
Here is just one of the 24 stories that our archaeologists have uncovered in their quest to discover the current wealth of Hastings.
Open today until 7pm and again tomorrow from 1-7pm.
In July our technical manager, Paul Jarvis, and his partner Cordelia are volunteering with Utopia 56, a charity set up to help at the refugee camp in Dunkirk. Before they go they are fundraising for essential funds to help during their time there.
If you would like to support them then please read on…or check out their Facebook page
Mia has joined the team for 6 months as part of an internship through Hall for Cornwall where she works with 3 arts organisations. Apart from us, Mia is also working with O-Region and C-Scape Dance, so it’s safe to say she’s kept busy juggling workloads coming from three directions. However we asked the other companies whether it would be ok for her to join us for a week in Sunderland and luckily for us, they agreed. Now she’s had chance to recover from her first WildWorks project we thought we’d ask her how she found it.
Len Gibson is from Wearside and we’ve been learning about his life in the North East and the impact that playing music has had on it. His story features in our new show ‘A Great Night Out’
Len was a Prisoner of War on the Burma Railway and says that playing music was the key to his survival.
Mercedes Kemp, Associate Director of Community and Research for WildWorks, has used the interview she held with Len to create dialogue for the show. This section of the evening will also feature a specially commissioned song written and performed by Ross Millard of the Futureheads, also from Sunderland.
Have we mentioned we are producing a night to remember in Sunderland? In fact, a Great Night Out!
A Great Night Out will be held at The Point in Holmeside, Sunderland, on Sunday, May 1. The venue will be transformed into a ‘glittering dream space’ in which people will be entertained by local performers while celebrating Sunderland and South Tyneside’s proud heritage through tales and stories.
We have a unique opportunity for people with an interest in food and catering to help us to create the canapes for ‘A Great Night Out’.
It’s been a good week at WildWorks! Our application to Arts Council England for Small Scale Capital has been successful.
Quite often capital funding means buildings. We create theatre in real landscapes, for and with the people of those landscapes, and not in theatres. This means we cannot rely on the basic structures that usual venues provide.
In the woods, a castle, or a harbour, there are no lighting structures or sound installations, there is no community rehearsal space. For each project we create a theatre from scratch including backstage spaces, dressing rooms, communication systems, an office, the list goes on. Previously the majority of this is hired in equipment and necessity demands that the cost of this be included in the production budget for each project. This funding means we can create and own a sustainable and environmentally light-touch portable ‘theatre’ facility.
Following the departure of our dear time travelling friends, we havediscovered a journal left behind in the rainforest and thought to be that of Dr Frankland. Some may argue that this journal provides evidence that Dr Frankland was in fact the super professor all along.
Of course the more politically sensitive or erotically charged entries are not for full public consumption and may never see the light of day but we have released some of the entries in the hope that these provide a sense of the records she was keeping of her momentous trip back in time and the sense of Christmas spirit discovered by all our intrepid friends and adventurers from the future.
Please visit http://yuletidearkive.tumblr.com to see the pages.
On Friday 2nd October, at the Newlyn Art Gallery, two of Wildworks’ Associate Artists organised a benefit evening dedicated to the children living in the Medina of Tunis who dream about making films and creating a better world. The aim of the evening was to raise funds for the children’s film club in Tunis, but most importantly it was about raising awareness of the situation in Tunisia and sharing the work of the incredible artists who live there.
Agnieszka Blonska and Mercedes Kemp describe the motivation behind organising this event:
“Since the Arab Spring in 2011, Tunisia has struggled with serious political and economical issues. Although it has remained democratic, the economy is strained, the security situation remains precarious and the country continuously tries to find a balance between protecting democratic freedoms and battling the forces which want to destroy these freedoms. Recent terrorist attacks at the Bardo National Museum in Tunis and in Sousse only deepened the economical struggle directly affecting the tourist industry.
Sunday 3rd August 2014 was a unique day for WildWorks and collaborators The Lost Gardens of Heligan; 100: The Day Our World Changed was a dawn till dusk continuous theatrical event, which entranced 6000 audience members with the beautiful “living stage” that was Heligan gardens and the heart-wrenching performances from cast and musicians alike. Over 300 volunteers, from the very young to the young-at-heart, helped us to re-create 1914, by contributing to everything from bunting-making to gardening, via singing and motorbike riding. Filmed throughout, we are now proud to have a distilled version of the day available to you on DVD through the Heligan shop (link below).
From the calling of names at the three war memorials in the stillness of the sunrise, to the arrival of a lugger and the festivities and anticipations at Mevagissey harbour, travel with us through the village alongside our boys and on to Heligan gardens. Watch the boys advance, cutting through the crowd and heading to the shadows in the valley below as a symphony of spoken memory, sound, performance and pyrotechnics create an all-encompassing experience, both panoramic and intimate. At the end of the day we stood entranced for over an hour, watching the lost men depart on their final journey, listening to their names being called in a silence only occasionally broken by families applauding the name of a great grandfather or uncle as a sign of affection and respect. Stand with us and experience this unforgettable day.
Buy 100: The Day Our World Changed here
DVD includes: footage from the day, the sound track and a slideshow of 150 images.
Earlier this month, one of our Associate Directors, Sue Hill, took part in a “lock-in” at Elizabeth Castle on the island of Jersey. In partnership with Jersey Arts Trust and Jersey Heritage, Sue led a group of artists, who had travelled to Jersey from their own island nations, in an exploration of their disciplines and a study of the spirit of collaboration. You can now view a fascinating film, by clicking the link below, which will tell you more about the 10 days that Sue spent on the island, and what the artists made during their stay.
Inter-Island Artist Lock-In
We our very proud that our Associate Designer, Myriddin Wannell, has been selected to exhibit his work from our show The Passion that happened in 2011 with National Theatre Wales (See our projects page for more details) at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Make/Believe: UK Design for Performance 2011-2015 celebrates the diversity of performance design across different art forms.
The exhibition includes the some of the costume and props worn by Michael Sheen and Mydd’s original design sketches.
This summer we are excited to be working in partnership the Jersey Arts Trust and Jersey Heritage as part of the ‘Inter-Island Artist Lock-in’. At the end of this month one our Associate Directors, Sue Hill, is heading to Elizabeth Castle with artists from 24 island nations who will be ‘locked in’ the castle on a rocky outcrop off Jersey’s south coast in a celebration of global culture and collaboration, to coincide with one of the world’s lesser-known international sporting events.
In 2013 we set up camp in the beautiful surroundings of Tehidy Woods, Cornwall and spent a wonderful two weeks working in collaboration with the The National Youth Theatre REP Company. We returned once again to the woods in 2014 for another week of wild workshops continuing our development of ideas for Wolf’s Child and furthering our collaboration with the National Youth Theatre. It was during these weeks that we were lucky to meet four of the performing company currently appearing in Wolf’s Child at Norfolk and Norwich Festival. Ellie James is playing Thorn, Sophie Ellerby plays Kas Crow, Lousia Beadel is Larch and Tomas Thompson is in the wolf chorus.
We thought we’d ask Ellie and Sophie how they were finding their time with us…
On these rainy, windy days, summer seems a long way off so it has been lovely to remind ourselves of the glorious blue skies of 3 August 2014, as we go through the footage and compile a short film to share with everyone.
You can watch it here:
Whilst this captures the essence of the day, it doesn’t show the breadth of what happened or all the amazing people who gave their time and hard work to make it happen. So we would love to make a longer version and make it available for everyone whether you were a part of the day, in the audience or didn’t manage to see it in person. Before we do this we want to make sure that there is enough interest from people.
If you would like to let us know then you can complete this quick (5 question) survey here:
We are also delighted that we have been nominated for Best Theatrical Event in the 2015 What’s On Cornwall Awards. We’re up against some very tough competition and you can vote here:
We’ve been having loads of festive fun of late – developing the Yule-tide Ark-ive for the rainforest at The Eden Project, Cornwall.
The experience is a combination of live performance, music, installations, soundscapes and beautiful lighting. One thing is for sure, it will be like no other Christmas experience!
The Yule-tide Ark-ive, carrying the memory of Christmas, has crash landed in the Rainforest Biome. Festive cargo has been scattered all over the place. A diligent crew is busy putting the memories back it their rightful crates, as well as harvesting some new memories from the Eden visitors; in order to set sail again…
The Yule-tide Ark-ive is part of Eden’s festive season and will be open on the following nights:
Saturday 29th November 4pm – 8pm
Sunday 30th November 4pm – 7pm
Friday 5th December 4pm – 7pm
Saturday 6th December 4pm – 8pm
Sunday 7th December 4pm – 7pm
Friday 12th December 4pm – 7pm
Saturday 13th December 4pm – 8pm
Sunday 14th December 4pm – 7pm
Monday 15th December 4pm – 7pm
Tuesday 16th December 4pm – 7pm
Wednesday 17th December 4pm – 7pm
Thursday 18th December 4pm – 7pm
Friday 19th December 4pm – 8pm
Saturday 20th December 4pm – 8pm
Sunday 21st December 4pm – 8pm
Monday 22nd December 4pm – 8pm
Tuesday 23rd December 4pm – 8pm
Saturday 27th December 4pm – 6pm
Sunday 28th December 4pm – 6pm
Monday 29th December 4pm – 6pm
Tuesday 30th December 4pm – 6pm
Visit Eden’s website for more details – there’s ice skating and a Father Christmas show each evening too.
We need your help.
Working in partnership with Zap Art, we are exploring possibilities for a major international project, in which we turn our creative gaze to the notion of HOME. We believe this is an important theme to consider at the point at which our global actions are defining the 21st century; at a point when personal and community resilience has never been such an essential asset in a world where complex and unrelenting change feels beyond our control. We want to explore what we need around us to feel at home, what we can learn from different cultures about new ways to cohabit and grow.
We are exploring stories of home and homelessness; rootedness and migrancy; belonging and displacement; access and exclusion. We need to ask if our existing assumptions and understandings about HOME represent the reality of living in our rapidly transforming world. We believe we need to redefine our sense of what constitutes HOME and that we should do that together across communities, across barriers, across borders.
What is it? Bricks and mortar? A familiar sky and landscape? A group of people? A sense of confidence? Something we need others to recognise? How do we create a sense of “at-homeness” in the midst of evolution, shifts and turmoil?
In November and December 2014 a small team of WildWorkers are going to Soweto, Mumbai and Rio. What shall we ask? We will be asking questions such as:
‘Why do you call this home?’
‘What do you most value about where you live?’
‘Is there something in particular that makes you feel at home?’
‘What would you miss most if you left here?’
Is home a suitcase?
Is home a food?
Is home a language?
Is home a person?
Describe home in three words
Describe home in three objects
Is there a question that you would like us to ask? Something you would like to know about any of those places? If so – get in touch with us by:
- tweeting a question to @wild_works
- Emailing a question to [email protected]
- Adding a comment to our Facebook post or blog post
Home has been conceived by Dave Reeves with Bill Mitchell. Zap Art has received public funding from the National Lottery through Arts Council England for the research and development of ideas for this project with WildWorks as artistic lead.