An open-air performance is set to shatter preconceptions of the theatre as a grand ball comes to Darlington.
Breaking down conventional theatre walls, quite literally, on Saturday August 26 at 9.30pm, the market square will be transformed into an extravagant stage and the people of the town are invited to enjoy a unique show – The Ball.
Hoping to attract a significant audience, The Ball is the first of a busy schedule of ambitious and high-quality theatre coming to the town as part of an exciting new initiative, Darlington Theatre Town.
The project brings together the expertise of partners Creative Darlington, Darlington Hippodrome, Luxi, Theatre Hullabaloo and ODDMANOUT, to cement Darlington’s place as a Theatre Town and a place where theatre thrives.
Stephen Wiper manager of Creative Darlington, said: “This production builds on the strengths of the town, and the market place is the perfect setting for the piece. As a bustling hub of activity for meeting, exchanging ideas and having debate; it portrays exactly what the theatre itself does.”
This inclusive, outdoor performance hopes to attract new audiences and delight theatre-goers alike. The piece aims to take them on a journey and engage them in a new and unexpected way.
The Ball is centred around the themes of greed, power and family, and the underlying value is a tale as old as time – to get what you want you must play the game.
And that’s not all, after enjoying the show, the audience will be encouraged to party like no other when The Afterparty kicks off with much merriment, dancing and grandeur.
The Ball is presented by Wet Picnic – a theatre ensemble that creates high-impact visual and physical theatre for everyone, not controlled by space or location.
Associate Artistic Director Judy Barrington-Smuts, said: “Street performance has the capacity to bring the magic of theatre to anybody who wants to watch it. It breaks social boundaries and brings all walks of life together to engage in an shared experience!
“We are particularly excited to be coming to Darlington as it’s such an innovative place for theatre to grow right now.”
Although originally a Winchester-based company, this isn’t Wet Picnic’s first visit to the area. They delighted audiences last summer at the Stockton International Riverside Festival and after being so well received, are keen to engage with the people of Darlington.
If audiences simply cannot wait to go to The Ball there is an Aperitif happening that afternoon to whet their appetite. This will be an eccentric take on a silent disco, combined with interactive play and thought-provoking satire. This will take place in a top secret, exclusive location from 1.30pm on Saturday August 26 – book your tickets here.
Councillor Nick Wallis from Darlington Borough Council, said: “This is an exciting time for Darlington which is cementing its image as a theatre town. The Ball is a prime example that theatre really is for everyone.”
For more information on the event visit https://www.darlingtonhippodrome.co.uk/about-us/from-our-partners/darlington-theatre-town/.