On Wednesday 21st March 2012 started for the third consecutive year at La Fabrique Théâtrale of Culture Commune, the 15th edition of the Artois’ International and Academic Festival of performing arts.
Along with the young ’Compagnie de Guingois’ from the Conservatoire d’Amiens, and with two students in Master ’Performing Arts’ in Arras, the University’s Culture Department and Culture Commune gave, for the evening, carte blanche to Hotch Potch Performance. This company was created by the students, currently in their third year of the Bachelor of Street Art from the University of Winchester : Eve Blakemore, Laura Surgenor and Ross Wheeler. Supervised by John Lee, our partner in ZEPA, along with Stephie Baker, Anne Burman, Callum English and Hannah Auden-Gandolfo, our young British troupe, with their repertoire of ‘street’ and ‘cabaret’, have opened and closed the show !
With Ka-dunk-a-junk, the English students offered to an amazed audience a perfectly timed introduction. In fact, once the buses from the University dropped off the Arras’ students on the plaza of the Base 11/19, this troupe of ‘alien scrap merchants’ invited them to walk to discover our strange but harmonious world ! Extravagant body language and improvised percussions mixed during 40 minutes to the sound of their strange musical instruments made from scrap materials.
After the theatre plays of Amandine Mercier and Beata Banasik ‘Enfermer Les Mots’ and of the Compagnie de Guingois ‘La Princesse et l’homme sans coeur’, who played to packed houses and have prefigured, in some ways, the artistic’s diversity of the festival, the audience met Hotch Potch Performance for a memorable cabaret and disco night at the pub of the Fabrique Théâtrale : ‘Dr Strangelove’s Burlesque Discotheque’. Mustache mandatory ! While two seductive creatures, Sweet Candy and Molly Gutterot, passed into the audience to hand out sweets and give (applied) makeup advices to the audience -the famous mustache-, the Doctor Strangelove burned up the stage with a wildly dance on a dance-pop music, giving place to his ‘extravagant better half’, Mrs Strangelove, to the seductive Raven or to two…grannies (!) who seemed to have completely forgotten to go to bed and who progressively lost their…control.
The audience danced with Hotch Potch until the end of the show, which was one of the most important for the students, thanks to the receptivity and respect of the audience throughout the evening !
See you next year ! - Arnaud Verkindere, Culture Commune