Arty Party conquer public spaces in Prague !

Arty Party performer Mervyn Bradley, performance director Ray Jacobs and creative advocate Richard Edwards will be sharing some of Arty Party’s works and working methods at the Conquering Public Spaces Festival in Prague, from the 9th to the 13th of November.



We hope that as well as enjoying the animation ‘Let Me In’ , festival participants will gain insight and inspiration from our workshop  which is about creating an open space where themes, stories and expression can flow out from a group during improvisation based workshops.

In the festivals own words

‘ Over twenty organisations from all over Europe will present themselves at the conference , organisations that are living proof of the fact that people with learning disabilities can and do create music, radio, films, documentaries, visual art, theatre and dance performance at a professional level. The conference will be about best practise in creative work with people with learning disabilities.

More details about this exciting conference can be found on www.inventura.org

 

 

Fragments of Dark – Review and photos (click on this banner)

 
 Over 750 people came to experience the installation and performance of “Fragments of Dark” at Blists Hill as part of the ‘Ghostly Gaslight Night’ Halloween celebration.Arty Party artists worked alongside the Arty Party performance group members to create sound-scapes, dramatic shadows, and eerie performances. Old keys, bones and strange medical implements swung as if by magic from the ceiling; leaves, twigs and blown in detritus covered the floor. A strange mobile, made as if by children, created eerie and moving patterns across the far corner of the hut. The old bb hut in Blists Hill village was transformed into a place of shadows.
 

 The hut was an atmospheric and very narrow place to experience theatre, with often only inches between the single file of audience and the mesmerising performers. The haunting sound-scape created by Sound Artist Nick Parkin, alongside the words and whispers of the performance group, added richly to the experience. Co-directors Ray Jacobs and Nick Parkin referenced influences such as film directors The Brothers Quay and of writers such as Edgar Alan Poe and Dante Rossetti.

 The ten performers repeated simple and surreal actions: the slow and menacing sweeping of a broom, a lover’s hand slowly following the contours of another’s face, another performer’s eyes transfixed as he slowly reflected light from the mirror he held, across the hut’s wooden ceiling.

 
The performance group also enacted short dark scenes from gothic horror stories. In one story disembodied hands tapping rhythmically upon a box, scuttled away as Death made three loud knocks with his staff on the floor. A young female performer dressed in white slowly transformed into a withering old lady, eventually blown down by the insistent influence of Death’s repeated ‘three knocks’.

In another story the continual slow pacing across the room by a lady in black brought terror for five performers pinned against the wall. The performers suffered from different terrifying delusions each time she slowly swept past: fear of ageing, fear of heights, fear of spiders, until eventually the performers (like some of the audience) were literally petrified.

The combination of skilful transformative performance and eerie, powerful set design and lighting made Fragments of Dark a truly remarkable and thought provoking experience.

 Performers; Alison Picknell, Dean Warburton, Graham Busby, Nathan Campbell, Rebecca Smith,
Sean Nightingale, Stacey Smith, Mervyn Bradley, Sam Rogers, Zoe Robinson

Co – directors; Ray Jacobs, Nick Parkin

Set Design; Wren Miller

Lighting design and stage management; Jonathan Tritton

Click here to view digital images of the show by Nettie Edwards