Flamboyant street theatre programme headed for Bradford Festival

Flamboyant street theatre programme headed for Bradford Festival

Bradford Council is set to stage a host of colourful and creative street theatre acts at this year’s Bradford Festival.

In late July, City Park will burst into life with top quality acts from across the UK.

Innovating street theatre company, Highly Sprung will stage a piece offering a glimpse of a possible future  Urban Astronaut.

Problems surrounding air pollution have grown to a crisis point and the work askes audiences if there is ‘a way back?’

Combining stunning design and a unique travelling flying machine with simple storytelling and a moving dance performance, Urban Astronaut searches for a solution to the environmental disaster which Highly Sprung believes is in our near future.

Award-winning international performance company, Markmark Productions will stage HMS Punafore, a hilarious musical comedy where the crew makes disastrous attempts to perform Gilbert and Sullivan’s classic operetta.

Meet the Funnels by Artemis Productions is a comical interactive act featuring three chimneys which dance, toot their horns and play ‘follow the leader’.

When the time is right, the characters will surprise festival-goers by popping out like jack-in-the-boxes and invite people to join in with their games, fun and frivolity.

An amphibious pedalo has been cleverly adapted to take Reckless Invention characters, Mfanwy and Gfanwy, to places where normal pedalos cannot reach.

Pedalo is a two person peddle-about with an oceanic theme where the comical characters will attempt to impress City Park visitors with their sporting prowess and dreadful stunts.

Comical seafaring clichés from Treasure Island to Moby Dick will be played played out in Lifeboat, by Derbyshire-based street arts organisation, Artizani.

Audiences will be asked to ‘batten down the hatches’ as the shipwrecked Captain and Boatswain’s mate relive their comical tales of life on the seven seas.

Giant child-friendly fowl, the Puddle Ducks by Cirq Delight, will investigate every situation in Bradford’s City Park by curiously pecking at people’s bags and coats whilst quacking their way out of tricky situations.

Bradford’s master puppet makers, Cecil Green Arts, returns to City Park bringing some of their best larger than life paper mâché creations in the Big Welcome.

Internationally acclaimed theatre company Mind the Gap will perform the premier of Mirror Mirror, a thought-provoking collaborative piece developed with cutting-edge Liverpool theatre company The Kazimier.

Through ‘absurd performance’, technology and playful imitation, Mirror Mirror explores the experiences of people who are considered ‘different’ in today’s society and prompts the audience to ask themselves: who’s in front of the mirror?

Award-winning local interactive performance company, Same Difference, will stage, Sense-O-Matic which features a Victorian-inspired ‘fantastical object’ which ‘documents sights, sounds, smells and all other sensations’.

People will be encouraged to help Sense-O-Matic’s madcap lab-rats complete their ‘very important research’ and discover everyday details which are often overlooked.

Formerly known as the Bradford Playhouse, Fused Imagination will stage a light-hearted children’s show, Red Bill’s Air Race.

Budding ‘scientists, aviation experts and paper folding champions’ will work with larger-than-life engineers, ground crew and flight attendants to build, test-pilot and race paper planes around the festival.

Shipley-based arts company Q20 are set to show Elephant Gigante, an act which gives visitors the chance to experience ‘the majesty and serenity of the Serengeti’.

Moving through the crowds like cruise-liners through the mist, enormous, fully-animated puppets will ‘amaze and entrance’ visitors to the Bradford Festival.

The elephants will pause to meet people as they make their way to City Park’s ‘watering hole’ where they restore old friendships, tussle for dominance, groom each other and play.

Celebrated women’s street theatre company, Circo Rum Ba Ba, brings The Crow House, a silent movie-inspired show using acrobatics, silks trapeze artistry, hat juggling, musical saw and harp playing, puppetry, audience participation and slap-stick comedy.

One of Cardiff’s most exciting, original and eclectic companies and pioneers of all things retro, vintage and the wonderfully absurd, Kitsch & Sync Collective will stage, Bedraggled.

Three ‘bedraggled beauties’ are swept up on City Park’s ‘shores’, serenading shipwrecked sailors with their sublime, sultry sounds.

Audiences can expect ‘underwater warblings, mermaid mambo manoeuvres, fish maracas, octopus opera’ and much more!

Innovative British street theatre company, Acrojou will show, All at Sea, a theatrical installation set in a boat.

All at Sea combines melancholic humour, striking design  and visual poetry, in a moving and atmospheric ‘row-about installation’.

Bristol-based artistes, Cake Ladies, bring their flamboyant stilt-walking show by the same name.

With lashings of charisma and oozing with charm, the Cake Ladies are a saucy roaming tea party which dishes up sweet treats with a touch of glamour.

In 2016, the Bradford Festival attracted over 150,000 people into Bradford city centre.

Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Portfolio Holder for Environment, Sport and Culture, said: “This year’s festival is packed with lots of colourful and entertaining things to see and do.

“The street theatre programme will be lots of fun with lots of opportunities to interact with the performers.

“Admission is free and everyone is welcome.”

For further information and updates, visit www.bradfordfestival.org.uk or follow Bradford Festival on Twitter and Facebook.

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