Surrey Street Market, which is operating now with only around half the number of traders that used to work London’s oldest street market before the council intervened with its £1.1million “improvements” programme, is to be livened up over the first fortnight of August with theatrical performances, including the sort of sockpuppetry which even the Town Hall press office could not match.
Theatre on The Market aims to bring “innovative, fresh and free theatre experiences” among the fruit and veg stalls, thanks to grants from Arts Council England and the local council. With so few stalls now on the market, there should be plenty of space for the performers.
“Market-goers, families and people popping to pick up a parsnip on their way through this bustling hub of the community can expect to find the seriously silly, the wonderfully weird and the wilfully wacky across six unique, interactive and immersive theatre events,” the production company, Human Zoo, says.
The dates and events are…
Thu Aug 3 – 10am – 5pm
Personalised poetry written for you while you shop. A bit like ordering a personalised Dominos pizza (except less greasy, we hope!). This is a collaboration between The Human Zoo Theatre Company and Poetic Insight.
Day at the Races
Fri Aug 4 – 11am -1pm & 2pm – 4pm
Four posh toffs head to Surrey Street to cheer on their jockeys at the races. Only, their jockeys haven’t shown up. And that’s where you come in.
The Girl Who Fell in Love With The Moon
Sat Aug 5 – 11am, 1pm and 3pm (30min performance)
Back from international tour to Indonesia, these story-telling stargazers are certain to delight and entertain kids and grown ups of all ages.
The Puppet Zoo
Thu Aug 10 – 10am – 5pm
Create your own zoo animal puppet, and bring it to life in our miniature puppet theatre. All materials provided, the only thing you need to bring is your imagination and perhaps a very loud roar!
Fri Aug 11 – 11am, 1pm and 3pm (30min performance)
Is your bedroom a mess? Your whole house? Your entire life?
Join Human Zoo for this 30-minute outdoor performance, exploring messiness and creativity with music, dance, puppetry, comedy and a huge pile of junk!
Surrey Street Experience
Sat Aug 12 – 10am – 5pm
Treasure hunts, resident artists, poets and performers come together in this mystery interactive exhibition, which will be made in response to our time spent on Surrey Street Market.
“We want to begin to address the notion that the arts is an indulgence, only for those who can afford to buy a ticket,” Florence O’Mahony, Human Zoo;s artistic director, said. “Theatre on The Market is sure to be a fun, creative and joyful snippet of entertainment for anybody (kids or no kids!) who decides to venture down to Surrey Street.”
Human Zoo Theatre Company, established in 2013, is based at TMRW Hub on Croydon High Sreet. They say that their intention “is to make theatre in unusual, non-theatre spaces in Croydon while the Fairfield Halls is under development, in order to serve local communities and find new ways of putting the arts on the menu for more of Croydon’s locals”.
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