Arts Council England has confirmed the final funding for Imagineer’s FLOW, Milesians – The Coming of the Gaels, an ambitious large-scale outdoor production will run from 16 – 22 April 2022.
FLOW – Future Life of Our Ocean’s Wealth – is Imagineer’s Coventry City of Culture 2021 Project. A project in three parts – Navigate, Activate, Create – FLOW began with pupils in Coventry navigating the city’s blue spaces and culminates in April 2022 with Turning the Tide – An Ocean’s Fair curated by Imagineer’s Transformations participants and young environmentalists alongside Milesians – The Coming of the Gaels.
Created and led by Artistic Director Kathi Leahy and produced by Imagineer Productions with local, national and international partners including Circolombia and Johnny Donnelly (Ireland), FLOW aims to engage children, communities and artists with Ocean recovery through a creative arts framework, inspiring and developing awareness, nurturing care and challenging everyone to consider both their own personal and our collective environmental responsibility.
Milesians – Coming of the Gaels will feature a professional and community cast and combine circus, aerial performance, live music, and theatre to tell the ancient Celtic origin myth of the last invaders of Ireland. The project will see Imagineer develop their work through collaboration and creative professional international partnerships leaving a legacy for the city through bringing together local organisations like Rebel Manifesto Aerial and international organisations such as Circolombia.
Peter Knott, Midlands Area Director, Arts Council England said: “We are delighted to be able to support Imagineer with £70,000 thanks to National Lottery funding to deliver FLOW, a fantastic project in Coventry’s city of culture year.
“The FLOW project has involved young people across the city to create something truly amazing, and this latest part, Milesians – The Coming of the Gaels, local and international artists are bringing a genuine spectacle to Coventry. This project will also have a legacy of developing skills and encouraging the artists in the city to work with people from all around the world to realise their ambitions.”
Artistic Director Kathi Leahy said: “We’d like to extend huge thanks to Arts Council England, Coventry City of Culture 2021 and all our funders and partners for continuing to support FLOW. Not only is this a significant moment for young environmentalists to have their ideas heard but an opportunity to showcase the talents of the creative sector in Coventry and beyond as we tell the story of then Coming of the Gaels. Milesians is a tale with themes which still resonate today of migration, cultural identity, cultural co-existence and the ocean as the great connector.”
Chenine Bhathena, Creative Director Coventry UK City of Culture 2021 added: “I am looking forward to seeing Imagineer’s City of Culture project come to life. I am delighted we have been able to support this epic programme, created by one of the nation’s leading cultural organisations and based in Coventry. FLOW has been created with citizens in the city to build greater understanding about ocean recovery, and to encourage all to consider their own environmental impact and responsibly. Milesians – Coming of the Gaels will be fitting finale to the project.”
School pupils who participated in part one of the project, Navigate, are creating artworks which will form part of the Activate programme, Turning the Tide – An Ocean’s Fair.Imagineer and partners Media Mania are encouraging young environmentalists aged 18 – 25 years to get involved and help curate the programme for the Turning the Tide event. Turning the Tide will be a place to ask questions, have conversations and find out how to get involved in ocean recovery, take action and participate in the #30×30 campaign.
Following each performance of Milesians – The Coming of the Gaels there will be a post-show event a curated showcase of community music and dance collaborations and cultural fusions from African and Irish diasporas.
Imagineer is working with a range of partners to deliver this Coventry City of Culture 2021 project including: Coventry City of Culture 2021; Johnny Donnelly, ARCANA (Ireland); The Canal and River Trust; Warwickshire Wildlife Trust; Circolombia; Rebel; Manifesto Aerial and Media Mania.
FLOW is funded by Coventry City of Culture 2021, Arts Council England Cultural Recovery Fund 2, Coventry General Charities, Medwell Hyde, and Coventry City Council and the European Social Fund.
Find out more about FLOW via our website
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For further information contact Helen Annetts, PR on behalf of Imagineer, on 07779026720 or email HelenLAnnetts@hotmail.co.uk
Title: Turning the Tide – An Ocean’s Fair
Part of Imagineer’s FLOW
Date: 18 – 22nd April
Times: 11 – 1.30pm & 2.30pm – 5pm
Location: Big Top, Bishop Ullathorne School, Leasowes Avenue, Green Lane, Coventry, CV3 6BH
Turning the Tide – An Ocean’s Fair is a family-friendly event where audiences can experience the beauty, wealth and power of the ocean and discover the threats it faces through VR, film, sound experiences, exhibitions live performances and hands-on activities. Meet the people and organisations locally, nationally and globally who are making a difference. Turning the Tide is a place to ask questions, have conversations and find out how to get involved in ocean recovery, take action and participate in the #30×30 campaign.
Turning the Tide is curated by our Transformation Participants (18-25yrs) and young local environmentalists aged 14 – 25 years.
‘Turning the Tide’ is delivered by Imagineer in partnership with Media Mania. Supported by Warwickshire Wildlife Trusts and The Canal & Rivers Trust.
FLOW is funded by Coventry City of Culture Trust, DCMS Cultural Recovery Fund, Medwell Hyde, and Coventry City Council, European Social Fund and The Canal & Rivers Trust.
Milesians – The Coming of the Gaels
Part of Imagineer’s FLOW
Date: 16 – 22nd April 2022
Location: Outdoors, Bishop Ullathorne School, Leasowes Avenue, Green Lane, Coventry, CV3 6BH
In partnership with Circolombia and Rebel Manifesto Aerial Imagineer brings you a spectacle performance combining theatre, circus, aerial performance, and live music telling the epic story of the Coming of the Gaels to Ireland. A mystical story which culminates in a mighty battle between the Tuatha Dé Danann – (the tribe of the gods) and the Milesians to determine the fate of the land.
An ancient tale from the Book of Invasion of goddesses and high kings, of adventure and endeavour that takes place on both land and ocean. One that spans 400 years taking the audience from Egypt to Ireland with themes that resonate today migration, cultural co-existence, and acceptance.
Milesians – created by Artistic Director Kathi Leahy – partnering with Felicity Simpson and Performers from Circolombia, Luka Owen and Rebel Manifesto Aerial and Johnny Donnelly – Arcana. Milesians features a professional and community cast.
Post-Show event – A curated showcase of Irish & African community music and dance collaborations and cultural fusions will take place on the set of Milesians after each performance.
FLOW is funded by Coventry City of Culture Trust, DCMS Cultural Recovery Fund, Medwell Hyde, and Coventry City Council and the European Social Fund.
At the heart of Imagineer’s work is an exploration of the relationship between creative thinkers and innovators from the arts sector and engineers, architects, educationalists, special effects artists and designers.
Coventry UK City of Culture 2021
Coventry UK City of Culture 2021 started in May 2021, running for 12 months. The 365-day cultural programme will reflect Coventry as a diverse, modern city, demonstrating that culture is a force that changes lives. Coventry is known internationally as a city of welcome, a city of activists and pioneers, peace and reconciliation, innovation and invention, and now a City of Culture.
Coventry is the city where movement began, from innovation in the transport industry to a history of welcome, it has moved people for centuries. For a whole year, Coventry will celebrate with events, music, dance, theatre, and large-scale spectacle. As well as these big celebrations, it will show its unexpected side, with more intimate experiences and ways to get involved in every neighbourhood. And it’s not just Coventry. This epic celebration will also witness the entire region getting involved and benefitting from the opportunities that being City of Culture brings. It will be co-created with the people of Coventry and bring about long-term social, economic and cultural benefits.