Moments to Relish this Summer

Thousands are set to pack a Stoke-on-Trent park this summer to witness a spectacular outdoor theatre experience.

The Bell by Periplum is the highlight of an exciting summer arts programme launched today (7 June) by Appetite.

An audience of up to 3,500 each night is forecast for The Bell which combines mesmerising theatre with fire and pyrotechnics. It will be staged on Friday and Saturday, 2 and 3 August at Central Forest Park, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent.

Appetite, the Creative People and Places programme taking place in Stoke-on-Trent from 2013 to 2016, is funded by Arts Council England and led by the New Vic Theatre in partnership with B Arts, Brighter Futures, Partners in Creative Learning and Staffordshire University. It is supported by Stoke-on-Trent City Council.

The Bell is a feast for the senses, telling the story of two feuding clans in the middle of a breath-taking burning battlefield,” said Karl Greenwood, Appetite Project Director.

“The show is a 360-degree spectacle featuring pyrotechnics, flares, giant warlords, and an exhilarating live musical score.

“Securing The Bell is a real coup for Stoke-on-Trent and provides a fantastic opportunity for local people to see world class outdoor events on their doorstep.”

Appetite is now in the second year of a three year programme. Large scale outdoor performances such as The Bell are designed to bring people together to share memorable moments with their friends and family. Events like this will hopefully spark a newfound passion and interest in the arts across Stoke-on-Trent.

“We aim to create unique and wonderful experiences so people get a real hunger to get involved and see more art across the city,” explained Karl.

“We have been working with community groups throughout the city to develop this year’s programme. By putting people at the heart of our programme we will equip and enable people to continue to produce their own art projects. This will lead to more people in more places experiencing these types of events in many years to come.”

Appetite’s summer 2014 programme serves up an eclectic menu of art forms in a range of places across the city. This programme shows that art can be enjoyed anywhere and everywhere, from parks to pubs, hospitals to high streets. It begins on 13 and 14 June with Spill, described by choreographer Shaun Parker as a playground of dance. Spill, to be held at Moss Green Park in Bentilee combines quirky, dynamic dance with high energy street gymnastics. Each performance is unique as the dancers use the swings, slides and roundabouts as part of their performance.

A further highlight is Play Me, I’m Yours, an internationally acclaimed project by British artist Luke Jerram, which sees decorated pianos being adopted by community groups and made available in public spaces for anyone to play and enjoy.

Appetite is collaborating with UHNS Charity to bring a six month art programme into the North Staffordshire hospital complex. This includes Play Me, I’m Yours and a monthly lunchtime music programme called Pick ‘n’ Mix for staff, patients and visitors to enjoy.

Appetite has also teamed up with Stoke South Carnival and Renn & Associates to produce a new work inspired by Old Bill and to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the First World War. A life-size replica of the tank, Old Bill, will be the centrepiece of the carnival on 9 August.

Old Bill toured Britain to raise money and morale for the war effort and arrived in Stoke in 1918.

From 29-31 August, Appetite will turn the city centre into a hive of entertainment, where it will brim with top-class art and people sharing good times together. The weekend will feature everything from street dance, explosive outdoor spectacles and folk music in a box.

For a full rundown of the summer 2014 programme please visit www.appetitestoke.co.uk

ENDS

For media enquiries contact Nigel Howle on 0776204346, email nigelhowle@o2.co.uk

Notes to Editors:

Appetite is the Creative People and Places programme taking place in Stoke-on-Trent from 2013 to 2016. Appetite aims to get more people in Stoke-on-Trent to experience and be inspired by the arts. This investment in the arts and cultural sector of the area aims to mobilise and strengthen the skills, knowledge and infrastructure that already exists within the area and provide unprecedented opportunities for more people to see, make and influence more art in the city.

The Appetite programme is supported by funding from the National Lottery through Arts Council England and is led by the New Vic Theatre in partnership with B Arts, Brighter Futures, Partners in Creative Learning and Staffordshire University. It is supported by Stoke-on-Trent City Council.

For further information on Appetite contact Karl Greenwood, Project Director. Telephone 01782 381373 (ext 310) or email karl@appetitestoke.co.uk

Visit the Appetite website at www.appetitestoke.co.uk