Kensington and Chelsea may sometimes seem like one of the more staid London boroughs, but every year it proves it has a bit of street cred with its impressive InTRANSIT Festival. Now in its eighth year, this 10 day long festival covers 30 different productions and installations which aim to turn spaces around West London on their heads. Iconic buildings and unusual settings are opened up and re-purposed for a wide range of sideways-thinking performances.
Themed around the idea of “dwelling in unity” (the borough’s motto) there are shows under a flyover, among library bookshelves and one inside a skip, as well as those in local landmarks such as Holland Park, the Saatchi Gallery and Chelsea’s World’s End Distillery. Arts organisations within the borough are working with guests invited by this year’s curating team O’Neill/Ross, who have previous form designing many of the recent Secret Cinema gigs. Here are our highlights:
A promenade performance of Richard II by the Hip Hop Shakespeare Company will weave its way through Portobello Road after starting off in Tavistock Square with rappers and actors mixing up with market traders and local shop owners.
Performances start at 11am and 1pm with a finale at Salvage City at 5pm on Saturday 19 July. Free, just turn up.
This avian-themed show combines music, video and choreography to interpret the murmurations of starlings (no, not the sequel to The Silence of the Lambs – this refers to the mysterious formations the birds make). A talented collective of artists is working with award-winning composer Maxim Boon and the London Symphony Orchestra.
Flock will be staged Louis Blouin Gallery, 3 Olaf Street, W11 on 21 July. Performances take place at 7pm and 9pm. Tickets are £12.50 (concessions £9.50).
This unpredictable performance will take place at various benches around the borough, with homeless and ex-homeless actors staging some kind of row to unwitting members of the public. The technique is called Invisible Theatre as pioneered by Augusto Boal in the 1970s, here practiced by edgy theatrical pranksters, Cardboard Citizens.
Guerilla-style performances will take place between 22 and 26 July. For clues as to where and when, follow @RBKCculture or the handle #intransitfestival on Twitter. Free, if you can find it.
THE LITTLE WITCH
Join a witches’ coven as it journeys through the shrubs and shadows around Cremorne Gardens, recreating the story of a 127.5 year-old witch from a German children’s story by Ottfried Preussler. This family friendly promenade, by Marie Forbes and Sophie Nüzel, includes elements of dance, theatre and live music to explore age, identity and belonging.
Performances take place at 11am, 1pm, 4pm, and 7pm on Sunday 20 July in Cremorne Gardens, Lots Road SW10. Tickets are £7.50 with £5 Concessions, £20 for a family ticket (2 adults 1+ children).
We’re not sure if anyone’s getting married – or anyone’s getting shot. But this party where everyone is an invited wedding crasher sounds like fun.
The party is on Friday 18 July in Salvage City, 8.30pm until midnight. Tickets are £12 in advance (£10 Concession) and £15 on the door.
Actress Izzie Major plays Angela Auphery, a down-on-her-luck It Girl who has had to relocate from her Chelsea town house to a skip in the square. Yet still, she refuses to give up her dreams even as she nears total meltdown. We expect this to be somewhere between Beckett and Oscar the Grouch.
Performances take place around the skip in Cadogan Square, Chelsea SW1X 0EA. They are on at 3pm, 5pm and 7pm on 25 and 26 July. Free, prebook.
The InTRANSIT Festival 2014 runs from 18-27 July 2014 in locations across Kensington and Chelsea. The main hub for the festival is Salvage City, Acklam Village, 3 Acklam Road W10.