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On Tenterhooks

On Tenterhooks

photograph - Theo Moyes

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Exeter - Unexpected Festival 2016
Celebrating the 450th anniversary of Exeter Ship Canal

On Tenterhooks is a performance and music event celebrating the craft, creativity and commerce surrounding the river Exe and Britain's oldest surviving canal. Between October the 28th and November the 4th of 2016 we will presented tall tales of serge and sturgeons at public places around Exeter, culminating in an evening of fire and drama at the quayside. The project is a collaboration between Oceanallover, Exeter City Council and artists, makers, musicians, writers, performers, dancers, historians, environmentalists, farmers, business owners, enthusiasts and people from Exeter and the surrounding region. We explored the trade and life of the Exe, with particular emphasis on the flow of wool and woollen cloth out along the river and the imagined return of the sturgeon to its ancient breeding grounds in the upper reaches of the river.
On Tenterhooks was shown as a series of happenings leading up to a performance with fire and fireworks at the old Customs House on the river. We told stories, both truth and lies; we danced in the street; we invited you to walk with us; we asked you questions for which there may be no answer; we showed you what we can see; we asked you to think, about sheep, about fishes; we gave you something to listen to and to talk about.
We invited both performers and audience to be brave and to expect the unexpected. Each intervention was a bold exploration of emotions playing with mythology and history.
The final performance in this series was a journey across the waterfront trading area of Exeter marking the place where superfine serge left the land for its journey out into the world and the place where migrating sturgeon re-entered fresh water after one hundred years in the ocean.

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on tenterhookson tenterhooks

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on tenterhooks

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Design and Direction:

Alex Rigg

Partners:

Exeter City Council
Plymouth College of Art
Exeter College
St Peter's School
St David's School
Burn The Curtain

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Thank you so much to all of the makers, movers, musicians and administrative team that made this possible, especially Val Wilson of Exter City Council.

~

CS

 
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