Support Matt to run the London Marathon!

Our Treasurer Matthew Craig is running the London Marathon for the Blue Elephant on April 23rd!

He's battling a dodgy achilles' tendon all in the name of supporting Blue Elephant as we face into a tough year financially. We still have 30% of our core costs to raise for the next year so all support is hugely appreciated!

To follow Matt's training and support him and the Blue Elephant, please click here.

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Charity number: 1077161

Company number: 3724349

Past programme

Showcases an eclectic range of fresh and interesting contemporary work, largely by emerging artistslondondance.com
Theatre

Things We Should Have Said Today (Rehearsed Reading)

written by Pete Barrett

Date
Tuesday 23 August 2016

Betty is having a bad day. She’s overheating, her mother is demented, her son is coming out, her daughter is getting divorced, the farm is losing money and her husband is hiding away from it all under the tractor. Or is he just dead?

Rehearsed reading of the winning entry of the Blue Elephant's 2015 play writing competition.

This event is FREE but must be booked in advance to guarantee availability. Please click here to book.


Dance

Escape

LCP Dance Theatre

Dates
Wednesday 3 August 2016 - Saturday 6 August 2016

Escape explores the emotional journey of a refugee through struggle, despair and the search for freedom. Fusing aerial performance and dance theatre, Escape explores the impact of a new environment on a refugee, who must face social, political and psychological challenges in order to integrate into a new society.

Joanna Puchala has created choreography that combines contemporary dance with aerial techniques using aerial slings. Elaborate wrapping and falling create movements that heighten the intensity of the scenes and capture the full attention of the audience.

LCP returns to the Blue Elephant following the sell-out success of I Am in 2015 (“Offered something extraordinary” ★★★★ Female Arts). LCP Dance Theatre draws awareness to human rights violations through dance and the company’s past work has been nominated several times for the Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award.


Reviews

"provides a surprisingly deep statement on and harrowing interpretation of the theme of escaping."

Everything Theatre

"A compelling dance performance dealing with highly relevant issues."

UK Theatre Network

Directed by
Joanna Puchala
Dancers
Joanna Puchala & JC Bailey
Composed by
Stefano Guzetti
Multimedia Projection and Graphic Design by
Lidhka Inga
Dance

Blue Cloud Scratch

with Cloud Dance Festival

Date
Thursday 28 July 2016

Blue Cloud Scratch is an exciting new dance scratch night, showcasing works in progress from a diverse range of choreographers, and is curated by Blue Elephant Theatre and Cloud Dance Festival. Blue Cloud Scratch aims to encourage and provide emerging dance artists with opportunities to present their works in progress and receive feedback from audiences and peers.

This is the third Blue Cloud Scratch following our other successful nights in March and May.

For more about the Blue Cloud Scratch and Cloud Dance Festival, click here.

Indefinite Article Dance Theatre - Momentum

Indefinite Article Dance Theatre a collective of three dance artists - Fern Maia, Belinda Grantham and Craig Bennett - who are based in the North West. They specialise in devising and delivering high quality dance theatre that challenges, entertains and inspires audiences, by offering work that is both engaging and accessible.

Momentum plays with the in-between moments in daily life. Those microseconds where automatic impulse takes over and subsequent shifts occur in the direction of our being. Can we dwell in the precarious space that exists right before we submiss to those driving forces? The work will ultimately aim to question our inherent desire to succumb to what is considered facile and safe. How much of our behaviors is pre determined in our subconscious mind, and can we change the course of our physical and verbal dialogue in those tiny moments before impulse takes over?

Dickson Mbi - ShowTime

Dickson Mbi is a leading hip hop dancer whose own work fuses popping and contemporary dance in a unique way, and he has toured globally as a member of Russell Maliphant Company, also appearing in TV commercials choreographed by Russell Maliphant. He's also part of Just Us Dance Theatre, directed by Joseph Toonga, and is a co-founder of Fiya House which mentors, teaches and supports young hip hop dance artists.

Choreographed & performed by Dickson Mbi.

Lewys Holt - Phrases

Lewys Holt is an interdisciplinary dance artist based in the UK. His practice, while focusing on dance, spans comedy, visual arts and devised theatre.

He has worked with prominent international artists including Tino Sehgal, Frank Willens, Rosemary Lee and Florence Peake, and Lewys was shortlisted for a Jerwood Choreographic Grant (2013) for his collaborative work with Katherine Hall Subject To Change.

In 2015 he was supported by Dance4 and Yorkshire Dance to successfully secure Arts Council funding to make a solo show titled Of, Or At A Fairly Low Temperature. Lewys is also a founding member of the ACE funded Leicester-based contemporary performance collective Tetrad.

Phrases is an exploration of structured dance improvisations alongside spoken and projected text and projected photographs. Themes present in the work so far include confusion, sublime, dysfunction, non-sequiter, stream-of-consciousness and a resistance to representation and formal order.

Choreographed & performed by Lewys Holt.

Point(e) Taken Dance Theatre - Dual Deviation

Dual Deviation is a series of vignettes inspired by the music of Ezio Bosso and choreographed by Ian Parsons, exploring how different choices and paths that people take affect their lives.

Ian is a experienced dancer and choreographer, training originally at Canada's National Ballet School. He has danced in Les Miserables directed by Tom Hooper and in the West End revival of Cabaret. He also has held many different teaching posts at schools in the UK, and heads back to Canada to continue teaching there this year.

Choreographed by Ian Parsons
Performed by David Beer, Nami Furukawa, Corinne Swallow and Natasha Richardson

Alice Weber - Pomodoro

Pomodoro is a work that compares the physical fragility of human life to that of a tomato. The work is self-aware of its own absurdity and looks to explore our human experience with lightheartedness and joy.

Alice Weber received her early dance training in her native Sydney, Australia. She trained full-time at Academy Ballet, Sydney, using intensive classical training to foster a unique contemporary style. Alice's work is inspired by idiosyncracy, psychology, anatomical quirks and temporal dynamics. She works primarily in self-choreography but also teaches in West London.

Choreographed by Alice Weber
Performed by Rachel Elderkin

Autin Dance Theatre - A Positive Life

A Positive Life is an immersive dance theatre experience. Currently in it's early phases of research and development, this will be a 15 minute extract of a 1 hour long piece, aimed at young people aged 14-24 years old. Themes of sexual health, sex education, and well being are explored and delivered through 5 performers, of dance theatre and spoken word artists.

Johnny Autin graduated from the National Conservatoire of Music and Dance (France) in Contemporary Dance and Ballet. Based in the UK for over 9 years and now living in Birmingham, Johnny has worked with several organisations mainly as a performer and physical theatre practitioner. He is the Creative Director of the professional company Autin Dance Theatre and the Artistic Director of Man Made Youth Company, Birmingham's first independent all-male youth company.

Choreographed by Johnny Autin
Performed by Becca Thomas, Jerome Wilks, Katie Albon, Michael Kelland, Jasmine Gardosi (tbc)


Dance

Cairo, mon amour

 

Date
Wednesday 27 July 2016

Get a taste of the vibrant dance scene in modern Cairo through this selection of work by Zosia Jo and Aly Khamees.

Khamees will perform his solo extract from Jo’s Ancient Modernity prior to a screening of the full work.


Supported by

Community arts

Never Going to Beat You

by Gypsy & Traveller Women's Project

Dates
Friday 22 July 2016 - Saturday 23 July 2016

It’s 1995 and Moira Le Bas has been swept off her feet by the charming Patrick Murphy who has come back to the area after several years away.
Within a year Moira has left school and is starting a new life as Patrick’s wife. She is having the time of her life but her cousin Bridy has some deep concerns about Patrick.
Twenty years later, it seems that Bridy was right. Moira wonders if she should’ve realised what Patrick was like when he promised "I’m never going to beat you."

Based on stories of domestic violence experienced by Gypsy and Traveller women as told to Jennie Buckman (Giants Theatre Company), Never Going to Beat You is a raw and personal piece of community drama. With a cast formed of Gypsy and Traveller women alongside actor Paul McGuinness, the play is an authentic look at the realities of domestic violence within these communities.“

Tickets are FREE but must be booked in advance to guarantee a place. Please click here to book.

Performance times:
14.30 Friday 22nd
19.30 Saturday 23rd


Dance

Fall Out

Old Kent Road

Dates
Wednesday 13 July 2016 - Saturday 16 July 2016

See the sound. Feel the Movement.

Uncover the conversations between music and emotion through choreography and improvisation. Old Kent Road’s unique collaboration combining tap dance with live music creates an exceptional, stirring performance.

In the space of a few years, choreographer Avalon Rathgeb has quickly become one of the UK’s leading forces in Tap dance. Creating her company in September 2014, a glimpse of Old Kent Road’s Fall Out was first performed as part of Resolution! 2015.

Now for the first time at Blue Elephant Theatre, you are invited to experience the premiere of a 50 minute show which brings together some of the UK's finest professional tap dancers, alongside jazz musicians.


Reviews

★★★★ "Uplifting and inspiring"

The Reviews Hub

"The atmosphere is electric, raw and grounded"

A Younger Theatre

Theatre

Les Musketieres Du Trois

By Rats With Wings

Dates
Wednesday 6 July 2016 - Friday 8 July 2016

These men might be heroes, clowns, simpletons or rogues. What is certain is that there are three of them…or four…(or five) and they are all very French.

These are harsh times: paupers will do anything for a bite to eat, while the gluttonous King Louis will consume anything he can get his grubby hands on. In order to rise from the gutter, one young man must fight for King, Queen and the love of his life to prove his worth. To succeed he’ll need new friends, but with friends like these…

Rats With Wings Theatre adopt a very physical form of storytelling, drawing inspiration from clowning, commedia, Lecoq and slapstick comedy to present a journey of bumbling sword fights, wailing peasants pompous courtiers and ridiculous romances. This series of hilarious scenarios is performed in a nonsensical faux-French, using half mask.

This new stage version of Alexandre Dumas’ classic novel The Three Musketeers aims to explore the comedic speech of the body beyond words.


Reviews

"The quirky and offbeat comedy of the play will amuse any audience"

The Theatre Tourist

"The strangeness of it turns into something genuinely delightful"

Euston Street Diaries

Family

Daughter of the Forest

by Komola Collective

Dates
Tuesday 28 June 2016 - Sunday 3 July 2016

The yolk of the sun is yet to start melting down the horizon over the Sundarbans - the dense mangrove forest that spreads from the southern shores of Bangladesh to the easternmost corner of West Bengal. A ship, an oil tanker, appears on the river, breaking through the wisps of fog. The ship is slowly sinking.

Thick, dark-gilded liquid seeps from the hulk, approaching the Sundarbans like the jaws of a dragon to swallow it. It will claim everything, choking trees and animals alike in its sticky coils. Enraged by the dark tide, vengeful demons awake in the souls of the Sundarbans tigers, and they begin to feast on humans who venture into the forest. Who will save them?

This is the tale of Bonbibi, a girl left in the Sundarbans as a child and raised by the creatures of the forest. Trouble looms when the greed of humans threatens nature, and conflict between man and beast becomes inevitable. She must embark on a quest to restore the balance between the two, and save the forest.

Daughter of the Forest is an exciting and colourful adventure for all ages. Komola’s new family theatre piece creates the magical world of Bonbibi through puppetry, physical theatre and contemporary storytelling, with music by acclaimed British-Bengali band Khiyo.

Recommended for ages 6+


Supported by

Gallery

Keith Gretton at Blue Elephant Theatre

 
Dates
Wednesday 6 July 2016 - Thursday 30 June 2016


Keith’s first exhibition after leaving art school was of landscapes (1958). He moved to London as a member of the Free Painters and briefly produced abstracts before exploring the visual relationships between maps and landscape. He was a printmaker in the 1990s before moving on to make figurative ceramic sculptures and showing them with the London Potters. He moved to Camberwell in 2013 to a house with a studio, while still making ceramics, but struggled for direction.

Keith turned 81 in December 2015, and looking at his children’s drawings, became inspired by their particular perceptive nature and in 2016 the creative surge has resulted in over 50 paintings and prints. This exhibition is a representative selection, as part of the 2016 Camberwell Arts Festival.

It is open pre and post show and by appointment during the week. Please call us on 02077010100 if you would like to call in to see it.

Theatre

The Countess (Rehearsed Readings)

by Paul Kalburgi
Directed by Scott Le Crass

Dates
Monday 20 June 2016 - Tuesday 21 June 2016

In March 2010 Marianne Jonson was found guilty of 23 counts of fraud at Harrow crown court and was sentenced to four and a half years in prison.

Told through first-hand interviews, court transcripts and extensive research, this verbatim play documents the story of a woman who led an extraordinary double life, conning the council out of a whopping £197,000 in fraudulent benefit claims.

Tickets are free but should be reserved in advance by emailing boxoffice@blueelephanttheatre.co.uk


Theatre

In The Gut

By Les Femmes Ridicule

Dates
Tuesday 14 June 2016 - Saturday 18 June 2016

A funny, tragic and ridiculous show about pregnancy, parenting and growing up.

Meet an array of charming and grotesque characters from chefs with birthing recipes to smug mothers, barmy historians and more. Les Femmes Ridicule play with their audience from beginning to end, walking a fine line between comedy and tragedy as they explore many themes of potential parenthood, including miscarriage, infertility and grief. The company's ultimate goal is to have fun with the audiences whilst tackling some of life’s paranoia in a light and unsettling way.

"Slapstick explains childbirth”, "Madness, Genius, Moving” (Audience feedback)
"I was crying with laughter… so good!” (Audience Feedback)

Hump Day Treat! All full-price tickets are reduced to £8.50 on Wednesday 15th June!

There will be a post-show discussion on Thursday 16th June.


Reviews

The Great Baby Bake Off! ★★★★

remotegoat

"The company bravely approach the subject matter"

A Younger Theatre

"Crazy and very amusing"

Ginger Wig and Strolling Man

"The show is pitch perfect"

Inked In

Supported by

  • Arts Council England
Gallery

Beyond the Mask and Other Stories

By Séverine Raynaud
Dates
Thursday 12 May 2016 - Thursday 9 June 2016

Séverine A. Raynaud (1985, France) is a Fine Art portrait photographer.

With a conceptual and symbolic approach, she asks question about the artist's place in the modern society, and challenges the viewer to think about his own.

Influenced by folklore (Celtic, Native American, Asian) and movies (Tim Burton, Hayao Miyazaki) she places her lonely characters (often masked) in enchanted surreal backgrounds and situations. Despite looking dark and moody her artworks are talking about hope, and how finding light in darkness.

"Storytellers transported me as a child into dangerous and enchanted worlds, I remember how I was wondering about how often a nobody could become a hero. There were my favorite stories. I would like to establish the same kind of connection with the viewers through my photography."

Séverine A. Raynaud is currently working and living in London.

The exhibition is open is open to the public before and after our shows and by appointment Mondays to Fridays.

Dance

Blue Cloud Scratch

with Cloud Dance Festival

Date
Tuesday 31 May 2016

Blue Cloud Scratch is an exciting new dance scratch night curated by Blue Elephant Theatre and Cloud Dance Festival. Blue Cloud Scratch aims to encourage and provide emerging dance artists with opportunities to present their works in progress and receive feedback from audiences and peers.

This is the second Blue Cloud Scratch following our first successful night in March.

For more about the Blue Cloud Scratch and Cloud Dance Festival, click here.

The running time of Blue Cloud Scratch is approxiamtely 2 hours, including an interval and Q&As with the choreographers.

Oom-pah Oom-pah

Oom-pah oom-pah is a duet born out of experimentation with two dance genres; contemporary and Argentine tango. The two have very different, quite opposite concepts of femininity: tango with its idiosyncratic idea of sensuality, and contemporary dance with its unisex, androgynous approach to movement. Sometimes these concepts or norms get taken to extremes and become cliched. Masha Gurina and Savina Casarin were curious to see what happens if you relax certain rules present in both genres and let go of our own idea of how we (the performers) should come across.

Choreographer: Masha Gurina
Performers: Savina Casarin and Masha Gurina
With thanks to Debora Di Centa and Chloe Aliyanni

CON-TACTO

CON-TACTO is a work in progress investigating the intimacy of touch. This is a conversation of movement between two performers, who listen, respond and propose through the perception of the others touch. This relationship starts from tentative beginnings, but finds organic flow, weight and rhythm for a true dialogue to emerge. The touch is longed for yet feared at the same time, creating moments of tension and release.

Choreographer: Piedad Albarracin Seiquer
Performers: Piedad Albarracin Seiquer and Thomas Hands
Composer: Felipe Escalada

Piedad is a Contemporary Dance Artist and through her many years of training and performance, she is now focusing on her own practice. Influenced by her time working with such artists as Jose Adugdo, Estela Merlos and Saorin, Piedad has a articulate and highly energetic vocabulary. Her Spanish playful rhythms are entwined with grounded floor work and Risk taking partner work. Piedad’s non- narrative stories, from the work of poet Julio Cortazar, shows an insight into human connections, with strong imagery colouring the process

LonDOoM

LonDOoM is a manifesto for Generation Rent. It is a gripping comedy about housing conditions in the biggest European city. This performance describes the biggest nightmare of every Londoner - hunting for property to rent.

is a manifesto of the ‘generation rent’. It is a gripping comedy about housing condition in the largest European city. This performance describes the biggest nightmare of every Londoner – hunting for property to rent.

In this piece, the audience assists the heroine in her journey. She is a newcomer to the city, and she believes that London will make her dreams come true. All she needs to do to make the world her oyster is to find the room to rent. Nothing could be easier, right?

Bee Dance Company is the collective of artists created in 2015 by Zuzanna Pilat. Our main motivation is to create works that make people wonder. Our aim is to produce interdisciplinary art pieces that brings contemporary dance to a new realm.

Dancer - Inês Zinho Pinheiro
Choreographer/ Dancer – Zuzanna Pilat
Voice Actress – Susan Hoffman

Sisyphus's Wife

Sisyphus's Wife premiered on 29.01.2016 at The Place as part of Resolution 2016.

Maria Ines Sousa and Adrian Look perform a duet telling a story of despair, purpose, choice and acceptance of fate; inspired by the 19th century Rückert poems about "Weltschmerz" and "The Myth of Sisyphus" by Albert Camus.

Dancers: Maria Ines Sousa and Adrian Look

Choreographer Adrian Look is a freelance dance artist and lecturer for Tanztheater. He is also the artistic director and choreographer of London based T a n z t h e a t e r Adrian Look, founded in 2014.

Immovable - Gleich Dances

Moving towards weight, the dance is engaged with taking up space and posturing, with building up and taking down. Dancers are angles and directions, masculine and feminine versions of themselves. Rough hewn geometries contrast with precise intersections of pointed feet and elbows. This dance for 3 women on pointe is approximately 10 minutes with soundscape including the voice of Donald Trump. It queries some of our ideas about what it means to make ballet.

Choreographer: Julia K Gleich
Dancers: Michelle Buckley, Eloise Hymas, Karianne Andreasson
Costumes: Manrutt Wongkaew

What it was when it happened

This is a work in progress which explores the ways in which dance can convey moments of forgetting or absence. We have been working with a sound artist who pieced together eight monologues focusing on the moments of confusion and non-expression, where the individuals were struggling to find the right words to explain their exact feelings at a moment of change in their lives. The dancers follow the rhythm of the words, creating an irregular pattern, moving between repetition, confusion and perhaps moments of clarity, thus embodying the experience of forgetting.

Dancers and choreographers: Camille Jetzer and Fran Mangiacasale
Sound artist: Gemma Riggs

DisConnect is a start-up contemporary dance group which currently explores the concept of forgetting through movement, as well as the ways in which dance can bridge the gap between different art forms and means of communication in order to convey that which is absent or forgotten.


Reviews

"A rewarding experience for those on, off- and backstage"

Views from the Gods

Family

Tempest in a Teacup

Date
Sunday 29 May 2016

An enchanted island in the middle of the ocean and the storm to end all storms, The Tempest in a Teacup re-imagines Shakespeare’s fantastical play for a young audience. We open Prospero’s spell book and out fly the most marvellous creatures. This is a story where fairies are conjured from thin air and books fly like butterflies around the room. Follow the play’s magical characters as they explore the island and find out what happens when strangers are washed onto their land.

This is a playful and interactive adventure using puppetry and storytelling, transporting the audience to this magical island in the middle of the ocean where wondrous things can happen.

Perfect for ages 5+


Theatre

Strawberry Starburst

Kryptonite Plays

Dates
Wednesday 11 May 2016 - Saturday 28 May 2016

I close my eyes and think back to the days when I used to stuff my face with mum’s spaghetti bolognese and I loved it, tomato juice dripping all down my chin.
OK.
Challenge accepted.

Shez is passionate about strawberry starbursts, her mum’s cooking and her boyfriend’s prickly face.

But when her life seems to slip out of control, she finds herself choosing between the food she loves and the people she cares about, never suspecting that this will become a matter of life and death.

Strawberry Starburst is a heartfelt and poignant new drama about one girl’s battle with her demons…and the lengths she’ll go to fight them.

"The playwright Bram Davidovich has taken extraordinary steps to carry out extensive research into the characters of this play [and] put the utmost effort into ensuring the extreme, raw, emotional rollercoaster of experiencing Anorexia Nervosa is portrayed"
Dr Jessica McClelland and Samantha Rennalls, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King's College London

Recommended for ages 14+ as there is strong content. Contact the theatre on 02077010100 if you would like further details.

There will be a post show discussion on Friday, 20th May.


Reviews

★★★★★ 'A shining performance from Grace and Davidovich’s harrowing script deserve to be seen by as wide an audience as possible.’

West End Wilma

‘A compelling performance’

The Stage

‘a fresh and innovative play’

Everything Theatre

★★★★ 'Strawberry Starburst is poignant, moving and hugely relevant.'

views from the gods

★★★★ 'Honest, truthful and conversational'

Female Arts

Writer:
Bram Davidovich
Director:
Asia Osborne
Actor:
Maryam Grace
Designer:
Alice Davies
Lighting Designer:
Rachel Sampley
Sound Design and Music:
Odinn Orn Hilmarsson & Joe Donohoe
Stage Manager:
James Arnold

Supported by