PROMETHEUS AWAKES, CROW & More Set for Greenwich+Docklands International Festival, June 22-24
Greenwich+Docklands International Festival (GDIF), London's ambitious annual festival of outdoor arts and spectacle, breaks new ground this year with visual storytelling on an epic scale, pioneering text based theatre on the street, site-specific outdoor dance framed by pre-Olympic London and, in a Festival first, GDIF brings the essence of the outdoors inside, with Crow, the world premiere of a visceral new production from Handspring Puppet Company UK, breathing new life into TEd Hughes' celebrated Crow poems.
Artistic Director Bradley Hemmings said "This year GDIF is reaching for something new. We are keen to build new bridges between the outdoor arts world and the UK's most dynamic theatre makers, so are delighted to be working with the Lyric Hammersmith, Watford Palace Theatre and Latitude on a raft of new commissions which will bring some of Britain's most exhilarating cutting edge talents into the outdoors for the first time.
"In the same spirit we're blurring the barriers between outside and in with our first ever indoor production, a prestigious world premiere of Crow, co-commissioned by the London 2012 Festival and the Royal Borough of Greenwich, which will give audiences a chance to witness Handspring's latest breathtaking puppetry at first hand.
"And as both Artistic Director of GDIF and Co-Artistic Director (with Jenny Sealey) of the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games, I'm particularly thrilled that we're able to premiere an epic new production from Graeae and La Fura dels Baus, led by disabled artists, which, with its fantastically diverse cast and breathtaking staging will epitomise the 2012 Paralympic spirit".
This year's Festival highlights include:
Prometheus Awakes, 22 June: This piece of spectacular theatre on a grand scale re-interprets the famous Greek myth in a collaboration between Graeae, the boldly inventive disabled-led theatre company and CatAlan Masters of visual magnificence La Fura Dels Baus. Set against the backdrop of the Royal Museums, Greenwich, this production has been commissioned especially for the year in which London will host the Paralympic Games and is presented as part of the London 2012 Festival. (FREE – no ticket required)
Crow, 21 June – 7 July: For the first time ever, GDIF will bring the spirit of the outdoors inside, with this world premiere from Handspring Puppet Company, whose work on The National Theatre production of War Horse has been seen throughout the world. Co-commissioned by the London 2012 Festival and the Royal Borough of Greenwich the production will combine Handspring's extraordinary puppetry with Place Prize winner Ben Duke's choreography to illuminate TEd Hughes' powerful Crow poems. (Tickets: £18, £15, concessions £15, £12 Booking opens 3 April 2012: Greenwich Theatre www.greenwichtheatre.org.uk and National Theatre ww.nationaltheatre.org.uk) Presented as part of the London 2012 Festival.
Word On The Street, 21 June – 30 June: A groundbreaking programme brings new writing to outdoor performance. Original performances have been commissioned from 11:18 with Bryony Lavery, nabokov with Nick Payne, Elinor Cook and Tom Wells, curious directive, tangled feet, Helen Chadwick, Rash Dash, High Hearted Theatre with Frazer Flintham and Les Enfants Terribles. Inventive and subversive, the productions include the use of a bouncy castle, physical theatre, live music, olfactory stimulus and trains. The only UK opportunity to see all these performances together is over the opening weekend of the the Greenwich+Docklands International Festival. (FREE – no ticket required)
Greenwich Fair, 23 – 24 June: Hugely successful at last year's Festival, the nineteenth century Greenwich Fair, described by Dickens, will be again reincarnated in contemporary guise throughout Cutty Sark Gardens, St Alfege Park and the Old Royal Naval College. A weekend programme of 25 different productions will bring together contemporary circus, theatre and dance, interactive games, booths and music. Roll up and view a show through the udder of a pig, glimpse a flying grand piano, get lost in a Spanish labyrinth or have your tea leaves read. (FREE – no ticket required)