On Saturday night we headed over to Cleethorpes for the final showing of “The Twilight Hour” by Periplum, which was part of this year’s Festival Of The Sky. The event was free but ticketed and it proved popular as within a few days all the ticket allocation was sold out. The performances took place on Friday 24th Sept and Saturday 25th at 9pm.
Tales of alchemy and legend brought to life with spellbinding spectacle. The Twilight Hour is the story of 9 spirits created from magical Cleethorpes folklore and heritage. In the hour between twilight and dark, these restless souls take flight – in the echo of a song, a rumble of thunder, a trick of the light.
We waited patiently at the large wooden gates of Meridian Park. Until the crowd was unleashed onto the field as the music started with the suspense building. Surrounding the performance area were 4 towers of blinding blue lights, the audience could stand wherever they liked and no one was quite sure of the best spot to catch the action. Wherever you stood was a good spot as the performance moved around from corner to corner and throughout the crowds. Children took to the shoulders of their adults and gazed in ore of the smoke and flashing lights as performers twirled and swirled, waved flags and taking flight on the backdrop of the dark sky at night.
The pyrotechnics of the show were impressive, I can appreciate the planning and production that went into the night. They had everything, from flames and flares to fireworks and no shortage of mystical smoke. The performance lasted around 45 minutes supported by an ominous sounding backtrack and a spoken word tale of storytelling. For people born and bred in Cleethorpes and Grimsby, I bet it felt familiar and warming to hear certain phrases, places and people’s names and a sense of pride with the nod to historical mentions of the place they call home.
It was probably a new experience for many of the audience members, especially the younger viewers. It was a moving theatrical performance, it wasn’t the type of show you set your picnic blanket down and stare forwards, the audience moved with the show around the arena. People strutting around to different viewing spots as the flames passed them by and wondering where the next flash or bang was coming from. Unpredictability added to the night.
The performance was Funded by Arts Council England, Heritage Lottery Fund and North East Lincolnshire Council. Commissioned by “From the Fields.” Written and created by Periplum. The Twilight Hour has been adapted from The Witching Hour by Periplum, commissioned by Absolutely Cultured and Wirral Borough of Culture.
I wasn’t sure what to expect with the turnout of people but it was certainly busy, it’s never easy to judge in smaller towns how many people the event has reached or how interested people are in something they maybe aren’t familiar with. I’d highly recommend if you do want to try something a bit different, take a leap of faith and attend an arts or cultural event in the area or even visit one somewhere close by, Hull for instance has plenty of events like this. No doubt the Cleethorpes Festival Of The Sky team also have more up their sleeves so give them a follow on social media so you don’t miss out. #FOTSCleethorpes
For North Lincs arts and theatre events follow 20:21 Art Centre or sign up to North Lincs Council Arts & Theatre newsletter so you don’t miss out. You’d be surprised what amazing and interesting events you can find if you just keep an eye out.
WHAT IS FESTIVAL OF THE SKY:
Summer 2019 saw FTF partner with North East Lincolnshire Council and CoastNEL to launch the first ‘Festival of the Sky’ in Cleethorpes – an ambitious celebration of arts and culture which attracted 60,000 attendees over three days with street theatre, live music, fire gardens, art installations, seafront kite demonstrations, a fringe featuring 25 local community groups and a huge parade through the resort. FOTS was created as a flagship moment in the Cleethorpes Regeneration Programme, and was a broad collaboration between various bodies including North East Lincolnshire Council, CoastNEL, Arts Council England, the Coastal Communities Fund and From the Fields.
The festival was a strategic tool in addressing barriers to engagement and access to the arts. Cleethorpes is an area of extraordinary heritage yet faces many unique and difficult challenges. 20.4% of the population are ‘income deprived’, and participation in the arts is among the lowest of anywhere in the country, with just 27% of residents saying they’d taken part in arts or culture activity in the last year – half the rate of some of the country’s most active areas. With historically minimal arts and culture infrastructure or funding, there has been a lack of access that would prove so effective in reducing social isolation, improving wellbeing and engaging deprived areas.
Responding to these challenges, Festival of the Sky curated a free, inclusive weekend of arts and culture, engaging a broad range of community groups, education bodies and local talent, and commissioning artists that had appeared at the likes of Glastonbury, Burning Man and Britain’s Got Talent. Described by The Guardian as “inventive”, the programme spread across seven zones from the Promenade to Meridian Showground, with 20,000 attendees per day creating an “amazing buzz” and accounting for a significant spike in footfall both from locals and tourists.
CREATIVE & ARTS EVENTS:
Witch, Spells and Wand Making workshop
On 30 October 2021 10.50 – 11.50am, 12.50 – 1.50pm and 1.50 – 2.50pm
Calling all young witches and wizards! Join children’s author, Addy Farmer for a spooky workshop. Make your own wand, create spells and discover what sort of animal will be your familiar! It’s witchcraft!
Children are welcome to wear witch or wizard costumes if they have them.
Children must be accompanied by an adult. Each ticket admits one child and accompanying adult.
About Addy Farmer:
Addy Farmer – Addy is an award winning children’s writer and poet published with Walker and Random House. Two of her picture books have been adapted for music and theatre. She also works on nonfiction books with various publishers. Her latest story book, I Love You, Sunshine, was developed with Child Bereavement UK. Her next book, LIttle Peat, the story of a lost and found engine, will be launched on December 10th. Addy is represented by Darley Anderson Literary Agency. http://www.addyfarmer.com @addyfarmer
20-21 Visual Arts Centre is an accessible venue
Witch, Spells and Wand Making workshop £3.00
A Ghoulish Victorian Tale
On 28 October 2021 6.30 – 8pm
A Ghoulish Tale! – Classic Victorian ghost story writing session for adults only*.
Join local author Addy Farmer as she explores ghost story telling from days gone by.
Come along to 20-21 Visual Arts Centre after hours and create your own terrifying Victorian Ghost Story! Refreshments and cake will be served. Please let us know of any dietary/access requirements by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
*This is an adults-only workshop, and is not suitable for children.
20-21 Visual Arts Centre is an accessible venue
Refreshments and cake will be included – please email email@example.com with any special dietary needs.
A Ghoulish Victorian Tale £15.00
Forthcoming 20:21 Visual Art Centre exhibitions:
Alicia Paz – River Makers
25 September to 11 December
River Makers is a new exhibition by Alicia Paz, presenting paintings and installations, referencing water and the notions of fluidity and change, as positive forces in the formation of female identity.
Combining influences from social history with fiction and fantasy, she explores the metaphorical dimension and rich symbolism of the sea, and of estuaries and rivers, considering them as areas of movement, exchange, transition, and renewal.
Images of eels and octopus tentacles are playfully combined to create intricate visual compositions. These are accompanied by an evolving series of paintings of historical female figures titled Juntas (Together). They are a kind of inspirational ‘family tree’, representing women thinkers, writers, artists, and also female swimmers, who have interested, moved or influenced Paz over the years.
The title River Makers references the long history of water management and the legacy of historical European migration to areas such as the Fens, and the Isle of Axholme neighbouring the River Trent in North Lincolnshire – specifically the Dutch and French Huguenot colonies that were involved in the draining of the marshlands to create the landscape we know today.
River Makers is curated by Lassla Esquivel, founder of Periferia Projects, and has been generously supported by Arts Council England.
9 October 2021 – 8 January 2022
Jason Wilsher-Mills: Jason and His Argonauts – An enormous inflatable sculpture will dominate the gallery, through which visitors can enter for a physically and digitally immersive experience.
More announcements coming soon.