RADIO LOCAL Embarks on UK Tour
The innovative live performance duo Hunt & Darton will set up shop - or, recording studio - on streets across the country, eking out local people's stories, observations and opinions, from the charmingly mundane to the quite extraordinary to the borderline ridiculous, in a celebration of local radio and community.
Stringent budgets and an ever-increasing centralisation of the media in London have led to a devastating demise in support for local radio, with tens of local shows closing their networks earlier this year. Hunt & Darton will travel the UK, aerials strapped to their heads, inviting members of the public and guest presenters to highlight local activity and what their community means to them.
Drawing on their signature deadpan, playful and inclusive approach, Hunt & Darton will turn regular radio features into a series of absurd games: news bulletins? Local residents divulge anything from DIY successes to family births. Restaurant reviews? Hunt & Darton will sample food from nearby cafes. Agony aunt? Strangers share their problems in a kind, supportive environment. Guest presenters, who in the past have included performance artists Lois Weaver (Split Britches) and Scottee (BBC Radio 4), will also be invited to produce content.
Jenny Hunt and Holly Darton said, "Radio Local is our most ambitious project to date, through commissions and workshops we want to really empower people, their contributions culminating in a challenging and highly engaging live public broadcast where we build radio with the general public. We are excited to see what collaborations grow and how much we can celebrate local voices. We have high expectations of the people out there and know that ultimately, it wouldn't be local without them."
Hunt & Darton is a 10-year old collaborative practise between artists Jenny Hunt and Holly Darton, who both studied Fine Art at Central Saint Martins. Hunt & Darton make work that embraces the ordinary as extraordinary; they replicate, borrow, reframe and reclaim social space, facilitating ambitious public Art that responsibly establishes itself as part of its new home. Committed to creating live work that playfully interrogates definitions of 'local', they blur distinctions between conceptual and community space and take 'public engagement for starters and not as side dish.' Hunt & Darton are the creators of the Three Weeks Editor award-winning Hunt & Darton Café, a pop-up interactive performance/installation and fully-functioning café. For a Circulate commission they created The Punch, The Sandwich, The Cake, an outdoor show for families. In 2014/15 they also toured a full-length theatre show titled Boredom to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and venues across the UK. They have since developed and toured Radio Local to town squares, parks and more remote locations across the UK. Hunt & Darton are associate artists at Artsadmin and Cambridge Junction.