‘Clay Walks’ Immersive Performance at Wheal Martyn

SpinDrift return to St Austell this June with a community performance project inspired by people and places. This year SpinDrift are collaborating with Wheal Martyn and Cornwall College to celebrate the rich tapestry of Clay Country.  ‘Clay Walks’ will immerse the audience into the wild and powerful world of mica, might and matriarchy, community, clay pits and ‘chalk’ men.

The promenade performance will unearth history, stories and perspective through dance, music, poetry and theatre.

Building on the success of last years ‘Soul Birds’, artistic director Suzie West is cultivating an inspiring experience for 20 local groups in the St Austell community to work together on this ambitious project. The devising process began in February with schools and local creatives developing a melting pot of ideas with archivists, creative writers and Cscape Dance director Sally Knight. Since then, the patchwork of ideas have been gradually woven together to create an amazing tapestry of performances from a multi-generation, 200 strong cast, aged from 6 to 70 years old. This collaborative project has been made possible by Cultivator and Hall for Cornwall, as well as the generosity of schools and the community.

The primary, secondary and college student have been collaborating and rehearsing alongside professional story tellers, dancers and musicians. The local community choirs, dance groups and bands have also been developing shared stories and journeys with Falmouth University dancers, writers and film makers to produce mesmerising scenes of poetry, song, images and dance.

The Clay Country community is celebrated across eras of struggle, joy and union and mapped through Wheal Martyn’s working water wheels, rusting machinery and nature trails. The present day community is also broadening and strengthening with this collaborative project. Director, Suzie West, hopes to build a strong message for participants and audience members alike – that Clay Country is a unique world of colour and contours, solidarity and humanity.

Wheal Martyn will be transformed and brought to life for two very special performances on the evenings of Thursday 14th and Friday 15th of June. There will be promenade routes to suit the ‘Adventurers’ and the ‘Wanderers’, with equal measures of live music, intimate poetry and stunning viewpoints across the site. The show starts at 6.00pm each night. Please bring suitable clothing and shoes for the 2 hour experience and perhaps a portable chair for those that might need it. Tickets are available for just £5.00 for each performance and can be purchased from the Wheal Martyn Gift Shop, by telephone on 01726 850362 or online (see link below). The cafe will be open for pre-show drinks and refreshments and there will be a traditional Cornish celebration at the end of the show with a chance to join the cast for a dance, tea treat, song and even tug of war! A show not be missed for locals, families, and the Clay Country curious.

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