Showzam, a festival dedicated to the celebration of Circus, Variety, Magic and Outdoor Arts ran for 10 fabulous years!
My first experience of the festival was as an artist performing in Marisa Carnesky’s critically acclaimed ‘Ghost Train’, a living installation brought to life through highly conceptual performance art. The show, which had huge success in London, later toured and became part of the Showzam! programme, giving me not just a new performance role, but a completely different perspective on what live performance could be as well as a bug that would later inspire me to step away from mainstream entertainment to join the world of arts and culture.
Having been working overseas for many years, I returned home and was very fortunate that my second experience of the festival would come from securing myself a producing role on LeftCoast’s presentations of the long-running festival.
The 7-day programme was eclectic, bringing together eye catching and crazy outdoor performances, street theatre, circus, cabaret, a talent development programme and a Carnival Ball to boot. All featuring some of the best international artists the circuit had to offer.
For Showzam I had another great opportunity to create an engagement programme for graduate performers. Working with internationally renowned French production house Generik Vapeur, we recruited and trained a group of graduate actors to perform with the company in their presentation of Bivouac, the first production of its kind to be staged in the resort. The show, performed across the entire town, featured a night time parade through the streets with flares, aerial work, a live rock band and streets filled with over one hundred blue men and thousands of audience – an experience that lives long in the collective memory of the town.
All photography credits – CJ Griffiths Photography