Audiences at the Heart of GDIF2013

Bradley Hemmings, GDIF Artistic DirectorGDIF’s Artistic Director Bradley Hemmings on the spirit of GDIF2013:

After last year’s amazing summer in which outdoor theatre seemed to capture the mood of Olympic London there’s a lot to live up to in 2013. Part of the spirit of that incredible year came out of those spectacular outdoor moments which are now indelibly written on the mind.

Whether it was the extraordinary stagecraft and inclusivity of “Prometheus Awakes” at the National Maritime Museum, the compelling and surreal world of “Motor Show” at Greenwich Peninsula, or, in central London seeing Piccadilly Circus transformed with an outpouring of circus and a blizzard of feathers; all of these were moments to treasure.

As we go into 2013, I’m keen that whilst GDIF should continue to surprise and astonish, that we also remember to tap into another very important part of the 2012 spirit. This for me was all about the sense of togetherness which felt palpable throughout Olympic London.

As a succession of amazing events (including the 2012 Ceremonies themselves) dazzled us with visions of London as never seen before, we the audience and the people of the city were also transformed. In those moments of celebration and coming together we had a different, perhaps more communal sense of ourselves. Experiencing the surge of conviviality and togetherness within the crowds it became clear that in outdoor theatre the audience is as much a protagonist in the unfolding drama as the performers. So the big challenge for 2013 is to capture some of that spirit – a tall order perhaps without the help of the 2012 Olympic moment and thousands of smiling “gamesmakers”.

However, in the very act of invading public space filled with crowds eager to share in the unique magic of free outdoor theatre, I hope that we’re already on the right track. So this year we’re going all out for tapping into that 2012 spirit of togetherness – please put the dates in your diary now and be part of it!

GDIF2013: 21-29 June

Bradley Hemmings
Artistic Director GDIF


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