Alleluia, a Clown Opera

CCP has recently completed a 3-month Research and Development project for 'Alleluia, a Clown Opera'. Funded by the Arts Council, the R&D enabled us to work with a team to develop the narrative structure, character and some scenes for the show.

'Alleluia' is a show of striking visual appeal, a theatre of intense and stunning images and many artistic layers. It was originally developed in collaboration with The John F. Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts in Washington DC, USA and the Brazilian costume designer, Roberto Mainieri. It began in answer to a question often asked of Angela de Castro: 'how do you conceive your clown personas?'. The narrative of the show is the process of discovering and creating a clown persona, from an intuitive hunch to the birth of the clown persona itself. Conceived as a large-scale show, mixing theatre clowning, live music/opera, puppetry, illusion, animation of objects, visual installation, aerial work and projection, this is a show of strong design, simplicity and sophistication, aiming to offer to the audience an immense spectrum of emotions.

We were very grateful for the support of the Arts Council England and the collaboration of the artistic team helping us take 'Alleluia' to the next stage of its development.

Working with A de Castro were:
Orit Aziz, consultant director
Alex Murdoch, clown consultant
Amelia Pimlott, puppeteer and maker
Douglas Kuhrt, lighting designer
Dennis Lowe, AV, film maker
Dean Stewart, film maker
Kate Anderson - producer

And a number of volunteers and students, including:
Matt Hutchison - puppeteer and maker.
Faith Brandon - puppeteer and performer.
Sabrina Recoules - puppeteer, maker and performer.
Andreas Milie - assistant

We are especially grateful to Kate Anderson for the vital role of Production Manager and Karen Fisher for support and advice throughout this project. And thank you to Stratford Circus, where we presented a showing of work-to-date at the end of July 14.

Alleluia is an exciting development, a show which has the potential to take theatre clowning, visual arts and the dramatic experience to another level. The next step is a third R&D period specifically to work with a dramaturg to fully develop the text. We will be seeking funding for this soon.

Original development: The John F Kennedy Centre, Washington DC, USA
2nd phase of research and development: Stratford Circus , London, UK
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