Renowned circus company Ockham’s Razor (This Time, Belly of the Whale, Tipping Point) will take their new outdoor performance Public on tour this summer, with performances outside The Lowry on Sunday 8 May. Known for their aerial theatre performances, blending contemporary circus and visual theatre, Ockham’s Razor’s new production explores the use and ownership of public space.
Urban public space has become increasingly overwhelmed by corporations, from privately-owned shopping centres to transport hubs. In this privatised, built-up landscape, there is less and less space for young people to take up public space. Play becomes a risky and subversive act. Public will see the company respond to and move through the area they perform in – using the architecture of the buildings and street furniture as the world around them becomes their set.
Incorporating parkour, acrobatics, break dancing and folk and contemporary styles, the company will create a reality where they are unbridled and able to be without guard in a public arena. At the end of the show in each location, the company will unite together and Public will culminate in a final mass dance that anyone can join. The choreography will be shared on TikTok and YouTube to local community and youth groups beforehand.
This latest production from Ockham’s Razor is produced by Turtle Key Arts, in partnership with the National Centre for Circus Arts, and brings together composer Max Reinhardt (Oily Cart; Late Junction, BBC Radio 3); jazz musician Sarathy Korwar, who has collaborated with Kamasi Washington and Shabaka Hutchings and released music with Ninja Tune and The Leaf Label; and designer Tina Bicat, winner of The Critics’ Theatre Award for her work with Punchdrunk.
Charlotte Mooney, Artistic Director of Ockham’s Razor, comments:
“There is a rich tradition of dancing as a form of protest – in England, folk dance was used by agrarian workers as a way to take up public space to claim their rights and as an exhibition of power. More recently, dance has been used as part of protest across the US. Public looks at different forms of dance from communal folk to more vulnerable individual expression and movement, such as parkour and breaking, that can be seen as transgressive. It looks at dance as empowerment and asks who belongs in public space and what do we want our communal space to be for?”
Public by Ockham’s Razor is produced by Turtle Key Arts, in partnership with National Centre of Circus Arts. It is commissioned and supported by NCCA, The Lowry, Salford, Circomedia and funded by Arts Council England.