Outdoor Family with Feral Theatre: Queen Bee and Bear Necessities.
By Emily Laurens
Performing theatre outdoors has its roots in the very beginnings of theatre in ancient Greece. Of course the climate there was undoubtedly a bit better than West Wales in April but the reasons behind the decision to perform outside are probably the same. The audience stand alongside performers, it is intimate, and nothing stands in the way of you and the actor, you can reach out and touch them if you so wish. And to take advantage of this closeness, this intimacy, Feral Theatre ask the audience to join in, to become part of the show, a show which happens alongside and around the audience – to sing, to dance, to walk through the woods, to offer suggestions and to swarm!
The scripts are a framework to be improvised around and we are calling Queen Bee a story walk as much of the paraphernalia of theatre – props, set, lighting – are absent. There will however be some lovely costumes and unlike most storytellers there will be characters.
At Feral Theatre we don’t like to be constrained by definitions, we like to blend, to take bits of this and a sprinkle of that. We began making theatre in 2007, working outdoors on beaches, allotments and in woodlands. We always devise and write our own material guided by the time of year and the place where we are performing.
We try to embrace complexity, finding beauty and hope in unexpected places. Making work that generates a sense of connection, we work as an ensemble using shadows, puppetry, music, circus and physical theatre. Like with Queen Bee we often work with members of the local community where young people interested in getting experience acting become the worker bees.
We are also serious natural history nerds and while there is myth and magic in our stories children and their families will also learn a lot about the importance of bees to us and the wider environment. They will also have a glimpse into what their lives might be like. That is important to us – to learn how to empathise with the non-human world, to feel part of the natural world. To feel, if only for a moment, what it might be like to be a bee, a flower, a stone.
We are co-founders of the Remembrance Day for Lost Species initiative. Since 2010, we have been creating new rituals for the Anthropocene – spaces for acknowledging ecological loss, including an annual day of remembrance for extinct species, places and cultures. Check out our website www.feraltheatre.co.uk to find out more.
Queen Bee will take place at Hilton Court Gardens on 24th August.
Tickets: £5.50 / £20 Family Ticket
11am and 2pm
Suitable for ages 3+. Children must be accompanied by an adult.
Ticket provides FREE entry into Hilton Court Gardens.
Bear Necessities will take place at Scolton Manor
This interactive show by Feral Theatre encourages the audience play games, make clay models and come together for a story.
Bring your teddies along for a picnic with a difference!
Travel through Scolton Manor‘s beautiful woodlands back to a time when bears roamed the land. Play games with wolves, get muddy with wild boar and listen to stories from the mythical past.
11am and 2pm
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