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Leading Outdoor Arts Specialists Without Walls Announce Partnership With LEEDS 2023 And Programme Highlights

LEEDS 2023 will present a body of exceptional new outdoor work next summer as an integral part of the Without Walls 2023 artistic programme.

Leading Outdoor Arts Specialists Without Walls Announce Partnership With LEEDS 2023 And Programme Highlights

Without Walls is announcing an exciting range of new organisations joining the Consortium in 2023, and is highlighting two new shows from our 2023 programme that audiences will be able to see next summer.

LEEDS 2023, the year-long celebration of culture taking place in Leeds next year, is joining the Artistic Directorate network of commissioning festivals. LEEDS 2023 will present a body of exceptional new outdoor work next summer as an integral part of the Without Walls 2023 artistic programme.

Without Walls continues to evolve and grow their Artistic Directorate through this new relationship with LEEDS 2023. On joining the Consortium, Kully Thiarai, Creative Director/CEO of LEEDS 2023, comments Leeds is a city bursting with creativity and talent. Our year of culture in 2023 will ensure all its residents can access and experience this across a diverse programme that embraces all sorts of cultural activity and art-forms. Our partnership with Without Walls will help put outdoor art at the heart of our summer programme. We are excited to be joining the consortium and supporting UK artists to bring the best outdoor shows to the neighbourhoods and communities of Leeds.

Following an open call earlier this year, Without Walls are delighted to announce the new members of their Touring Network Partnership and Creative Development Network. The Touring Network comprises organisations that are committed to touring Without Walls shows to neighbourhoods, towns and cities across England. Seventeen organisations have been confirmed as joining the network on 1st January 2023 with a further addition in the new year.

1 Barnsley Council 9 Flux Rotherham

2 Basingstoke & Deane Borough Council 10 Hampshire Cultural Trust

3 Cheshire Dance 11 Lancashire Encounter

4 Creative Basildon 12 Oldham Council

5 Crewe Town Council 13 Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council

6 DOCA, Devizes 14 Rochdale Borough Council

7 Festival of Thrift, Redcar 15 Theatre Orchard, Weston-super-Mare

8 First Art, Mansfield 16 The Culture House, Grimsby

17 Vision Redbridge Culture & Leisure

The Creative Development network is composed of organisations and freelance professionals developing an outdoor arts programme, who receive mentorship, training and support from Without Walls. Members are appointed on an annual basis. Eight organisations will be joining the network on 1st January 2023.

1 Company Chameleon, Manchester 5 Inspirate, Leicester

2 Dartington Trust 6 MarketPlace CPP, West Suffolk

3 Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council 7 Mira Kaushik, London

4 Feast Fest, Performance Infinity, London 8 Warrington Borough Council

Looking forward to 2023, the Without Walls programme of new commissions will be announced in February. In previous years, between 10 to 21 new shows have been commissioned and presented across our lead Artistic Directorate festivals.

Without Walls have highlighted two of the commissions that will be at the heart of the 2023 programme: Ancient Futures by Upswing and Unlimited and Serving Sounds by Working Boys Club. Afrofuturism inspired outdoor spectacular Ancient Futures blends contemporary circus and storytelling with Sound System culture and West African folklore. Both a headline festival experience and a pop up installation, the show fuses dance, circus, parkour, music and storytelling with design inspired by West African masquerade and Afrofuturism.

Each day, flamboyant Afrinauts arrive as curious visitors to each festival, and through the course of the day build an encampment where they welcome willing participants to meet them, train with them and witness their unique community. At twilight, audiences are invited to join their spectacular dance party, a ritual to launch us into a new reality that promises to build a more vibrant, positive and inspiring future than we might otherwise be heading towards. Ancient Futures is conceived and directed by Vicki Dela Amedume (Upswing) and J Spooner (Unlimited) in collaboration with Quantum poet Oneness Sankara with new music by grime artist Afrikan Boy. Ancient Futures has been co-commissioned with Greenwich+Docklands International Festival (GDIF) where it will make its London premiere in Thamesmead with the support of Peabody. Bradley Hemmings MBE, GDIF's Artistic Director said GDIF is excited to be co-commissioning this timely new production and are looking forward to engaging with local communities in The Moorings estate in Thamesmead for this exhilarating fusion of circus, music, West African Masquerade and Afrofuturism, to imagine diverse and inclusive creative futures.

Serving Sounds is a multi-sensory sound installation that creates connection through music - a bar that serves bass rather than beer. The installation is an interactive work, playful and joyful with spaces for up to four people of all ages to interact with the bar at any one time, each experience lasting up to the length of a song. As audiences arrive, they'll find ordinary items you'd usually expect to find, like glasses, beermats, the odd bit of change. But at this bar, these items when touched will create a groove, a sound, strings, a snare, guitar or synths. Serving Sounds is produced by Activate Performing Arts, producers of Inside Out Dorset, with funding from Arts Council England.



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