2018 has been a brilliant year for stories and before our round up of the year, we can’t wait to share news of the first in a series of special projects we’re announcing for 2019!
Following three successful visits to the Carriageworks Theatre in Leeds, they’ve asked us to come back with a full weekend of storytelling and so…. Leeds Storytelling Takeover was born!
Taking place from Friday 8 – Saturday 10 March, 2019, Leeds Storytelling Takeover is an intoxicating weekend of stories from across the globe, featuring legendary storytellers – Clare Muireann Murphy, Tim Ralphs, Peter Chand, Ursula Holden Gill, Xanthe Gresham Knight as well as leading European artists. PLUS the chance to create and tell your very own.
Tickets go on sale in the New Year with a limited number of SATURDAY SHOW PASSES for full day of events at a special price. We’ll let you know as soon as they go live.
And now we look back on a stellar year!
A STAR-STUDDED PROJECT
In January we launched Stars and Stories with our partners Derbyshire Virtual School – a creative participation project, inspired by Dreaming the Night Field and designed by four Derbyshire care leavers. Sparks flew as young people in care and creative mentors creatively explored stargazing and storytelling together, led by professional storyteller, Maria Whatton and astronomer, Nick Spall and hugely helped by an indoor planetarium!
HATCHING A NEW SHOW
Springtime saw us hatching a brand new show with one of the world’s leading storytellers, Jan Blake (featured this week on Radio 4’s Saturday Live) and our partners, The Albany and mac birmingham. Working with musicians Kouame Sereba and Raymond Sereba and the creative team that brought you The Old Woman, the Buffalo and the Lion of Manding– the next instalment of the Sundiata Keita story began to grow.
For this new show, Exile, Magic and Power, the artists wanted to bring even more voices into the piece – and welcomed members of London International Gospel Choir to explore the idea. The results of the week’s residency were shared as an extract at The Albany’s sister venue, Canada Water Theatre, here’s what the audience had to say about the experience…
“It’s such a powerful piece, awesome.”
“Jan is such a force of life, she tells a story so brilliantly!”
“It’s a great thing to portray the West African culture pre-slavery as so many of these stories have existed for thousands of years but have never been told to current generations, particularly in the UK.”
We look forward to seeing the work develop and see plans to tour the new show across the UK with a choir in tow, flourish.
As summer approached, we were thrilled to be asked by the British Council of Wales, Arts Council Wales and Dresden’s Societaets Theatre to present two shows (Dreaming the Night Field and The Remarkable Tale of Robert Desnos) at the first Welsh Performing Arts Festival in Dresden in April/May. Only seven companies were asked to showcase their work so we were delighted to be amongst the critically acclaimed work that was chosen.
The shows received a hugely warm welcome and sharing a platform with really exciting Welsh artists and fostering strong relationships with European partners was a real privilege. The audience response to the show demonstrated how timeless stories cross all borders!
WELSH LEGEND HITS THE MARK
Our autumn tour of Dreaming the Night Field crossed the length and breadth of Wales including, for the first time, a fully Welsh language version. The opening night of the show at the stunning Willow Globe in Powys met with a packed house and wild applause. We couldn’t wait to find out how Welsh audiences would react to the show and we weren’t disappointed, one audience member told us:
“I’ve seen shows about the Mabinogion before, on the telly and live, and I’ve never really got it… until tonight. This is storytelling of the highest order. I’ve always thought the Mabinogion was something quite complicated and difficult, but this isn’t, it’s just magical.”
Between Welsh dates, we headed to south west England, defying the Beast from the East to play three venues rescheduled from a snow-ravaged March and thus completing our three-year Arts Council England funded Strategic Touring programme. Read more about our autumn tour here.
THE REMARKABLE TALE OF ROBERT DESNOS in the NORTH
Leeds, Ilkley and Liverpool were the three lucky locations for a short tour of this remarkable show by Clare Muireann Murphy and Daniel Morden. This was our first chance to work with these two artists, whose work we’ve admired for a long time, and audiences shared our enthusiastic enjoyment of this piece which also toured Europe and the USA in 2018, bringing audiences to their feet with the power of stories to create change.
As we all hunker down for Christmas, if you’re in need of a storytelling fix, why not listen in to Michael Harvey’s Mabinogi Monday podcast series, where he joins in conversation with several storytellers and our own Producer, Naomi Wilds.
2019 is a year heralding change for Adverse Camber. Alongside the Leeds Storytelling Takeover in March, we’ve more special projects to announce next year as we look forward to working with our brilliant artists, partner venues, funders and team, and to welcoming audiences to join with us on the next stage of our journey.
Wishing you all a peaceful and story-filled festive season and looking forward sharing more stories with you in Leeds and beyond in 2019!
The Adverse Camber Team