GDIF2014 Directie & Co. Site Visit

539042_10151106009941380_927651790_nBy Emily Thomas, Projects Administrator at GDIF

Sophie and I are busy pulling together the arrangements for GDIF2014 and recently organised a rain-soaked site visit with a Dutch company performing as part of Greenwich Fair. Yvonne van den Akker is one of the two directors of Directie & Co., whose show Laundry XL will visit GDIF this summer. This all-female performance weaves together elements of dance, theatre, visual art and, ironically, a bit of water. This is our first site visit with an artist for this year’s festival, and for me being new with GDIF, a great opportunity to walk the various festival spaces and start to imagine the physical reality of the festival amidst these months of planning.

Site Visit 20.1.14 004

I used to work on the Watch This Space Festival at the National Theatre, where Theatre Square in front of the building was our foremost site for the festival. Having such a choice of sites is still quite a novelty for me and we discussed with Yvonne a number of possible spaces for staging the performance, which has a processional element. The next stage will be to piece together the rest of the Greenwich Fair programme to see where all the elements best fit, so we can maximise each show’s potential. It’s a bit like a giant jigsaw puzzle.

Watch This Space 2011 courtesy of the National Theatre

Watch This Space 2011 courtesy of the National Theatre

Yvonne had a whistle stop tour in London, leaving and returning to Amsterdam in the same day. A brief but productive visit, and I hope that the company’s next visit in June will be sunnier for her.

Laundry XL by Directie & Co. (Photo by Cies de Vries Fotografie)

So while it is nice to now be back in the cosy, dry GDIF offices, for me this has been a very welcome introduction to GDIF2014. I feel that we’ve now properly met!

Support a Spectacle

We need your help to stage GDIF’s Opening Night Spectacular!

Muare, 20 June 2014 

GDIF is renowned for its free opening night spectaculars. Over the years, enthralled Festival audiences have witnessed a disaster movie in the sky, dancers scaling the front of the Queen’s House, a giant 12m puppet awakening and even a life-sized sperm whale. Staging such extraordinary, jaw-dropping occasions is hugely expensive  and to be able to continue to present them we need your help.

Muaré by Voalá; Photo credit Sergio Bolanos

Muaré by Voalá; Photo credit Sergio Bolanos

This year our planned opening night spectacle Muaré is set to be an astonishing spectacle in which aerial performers from the Spanish/Argentinian company Voalá swoop overhead on a giant “op art” mobile accompanied by live music. If you’ve seen De La Guarda, Fuerzabruta or marvelled at the staging of an Olympic or Paralympic opening ceremony you’ll have some idea of how incredible this event will be!

We need to raise an additional £5,000* to make this event happen so please help us achieve this by donating here.

Please support GDIF’s opening night today!

*Every pound you give will be matched through Arts Council Catalyst funding