5 July 2011

Life is A Carnival – 24 July 2011

The last event in Beat’s Liftoff to 2012 project for the Legacy Trust Connections programme in NI. This event is part of the London 2012 Open Weekend.

Life is A Carnival
Sunday 24 July 2011, 12 – 5pm
Botanic Gardens & Ulster Museum
Spectacular Vertical Dance finalé on the Museum wall!
Family arts workshops! Music! Giant Puppets on Parade!


Botanic Gardens & Ulster Museum. A Carnival picnic in the park, circus actors and puppets on walkabout, singers on stage, music here and drumming there, twisting, tumbling gymnasts and, high above, aerial dancers on the wall. The Beat Initiative proudly presents a unique spectacle of artistic, physical performance declaring that the world is a circus and…Life Is A Carnival!

12 noon – 3.30pm Arts Workshops
Join the puppet making, drawing, music & dance in Botanic Gardens: on the Lawn and Daisy Hill, beside the Ulster Museum.
2.00pm Puppet Procession, to the carnival arts picnic in the park.
2.00 to 3.30pm A Picnic of Carnival Arts in the park with circus performance, carnival dance, wandering puppets, musicians and aerial performers on the Museum wall.
2.30 to 3.30pm Music Stage
2.30pm Katie and the Carnival
3.00pm NI Soul Troop
3.45pm Life is A Carnival Parade around the lawn
Join in, with the puppets you’ve made in the workshops
4.30pm Life is A Carnival
Spectacular finalé featuring gymnasts, band, drummers, choir, and vertical dancers on the wall of the Ulster Museum!

In the production of LIFE IS A CARNIVAL, Beat has been working with:
  • Project partners: Circus Bone Idle, Rathgael Gymnastics, Bruiser Theatre Company, Streetwise Community Circus.
  • Les Grandes Personnes, France, provided a 2-week puppet-making residency at the Carnival Centre.
  • John Quinn, Leading Beat’s artist and construction team.
  • Kate Lawrence, Specialist choreographer, dancer, rock climber and Performance Lecturer at Bangor University Wales, who was responsible for the unique training to create Beat’s spectacular Fly Butterfly vertical dance performance on the wall of Belfast City Hall in 2009.
  • Donal Scullion, Leader of the popular NI Soul Troop, is Musical Director of the Life Is A Carnival Carnival Band and has composed the theme song and music. It will be the soundtrack to the finalé performance of gymnastic theatre and wall dancing. The 48-strong Carnival Band is made up of 12 musicians; 23 singers from the Open Arts Community Choir; and 13 Beatndrum carnival drummers.
  • Beat’n’drum will be adding their iconic summery samba sounds to the Puppet Parade during the afternoon, as will the Chidambaram samba band.
  • Long-term carnival collaborators and big hitters of the music scene, Katie and the Carnival and NI Soul Troop, are on the Music Stage.
  • You’ll see Beat’s Puppet Club, or at least, their Big Heads and members of Beat’n’dance.
  • Carnival Creations
  • Tiny Beat
  • Denmark Street Community Centre
  • Divis Youth Project
  • Dreamscheme
  • Finaghy Youth Club
  • Holy Trinity Youth Centre
  • Inclusive Neighbourhood Project
  • LORAG (Lower Ormeau Residents Action Group)
  • New Lodge Arts
  • New Lodge Youth Club
  • Westlands Community Group

Thanks to:
Creative 42
Creer C Resister!
Les Grandes Personnes
Production Services Ireland

Special thanks to Marian Clark de Monreal, Legacy Trust Connections Programme Co-Ordinator at the Arts Council.

Very special appreciation for enthusiastic support and use of facilities, without which this event could not have happened, to The Ulster Museum (and Les and Ray) and Botanic Gardens (and Alex).