Saturday, 17 November 2007

Anyone Interested in Creating a Hebden Bridge Handmade Parade?

Andrew Kim of Thingumajig Theatre is a puppet and mask artist recently from the States but has been living in Hebden Bridge for a year and a half now. He has told the Hebden Bridge Web that "As most of my work is taking shows and puppets elsewhere, I don't really feel like I have much of a connection here except as a place to get groceries and the occasional cappuccino. I've been thinking that I'd like to meet my new home through my art, you know, maybe put on a giant puppet and run through town or something. The other day, I found myself at the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival open meeting and found myself suggesting: How about having a parade as part of the festival kick-off?"

"So here's a little bit of what I'm thinking: What if we had a little handmade, alternative parade in Hebden Bridge which brings out all its funky, artsy nature. I bet lots of people here have some ridiculous costume, mask, giant puppet, stilts, musical instruments. On the simplest level, it can be just an opportunity for folks to bring what they already have and parade just for the hell of it. On a more involved level, this could mean finding a workshop space for a few weeks before, having a small staff of parade artists and having free or very cheap public workshops where anyone can show up and make their own parade costumes, giant puppets, stilts, banners, etc. Perhaps we send artists into the schools or interested community groups and help them make their own costumes and parade section. Or maybe not and it's more focused on adults (and their children) to play out.

"From my background in community merry-making in the States, these are some of my favourite values which I would suggest for thinking about this parade:

  • Make it non-commercial! No logos, no advertisements allowed. Keep it about the art and the people performing it, not another opportunity to sell
  • No motorised vehicles. Keep it hand-driven. No decorated flatbed trucks with big speakers calling that a float. If you want a float, you have to push it or carry it.
  • No weapons, and most certainly not a military recruitment opportunity.

"These are ideas I've nicked from the Fremont Summer Solstice Parade in Seattle who nicked them from the Santa Barbara Summer Solstice Celebration. "

The parade would be on 28 June, 2008 - the day the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival opens. And this year's theme is: "Year of Language/Many Voices".

So what Andrew Kim is asking is this:

  • Would you be interested in (a) showing up with a silly costume and dancing down the street? (b) helping dream this event up and figuring out how it happens (c) making and/or teaching parade art in the weeks before 28 June.
  • Do you know of any artists and organisers, especially in the Hebden Bridge area who might be interested in this? If so, please forward them this message and have them email Andrew.

If there seems to be enough interest, he'll see about setting up a planning meeting and let people know about it.

Contact Andrew Kim at andrew (at) thingumajig.info
(replace (at) with @)


Thingumajig Theatre

May Day Parade and Festival, Minneapolis
The 13th Annual Olympia's Procession of the Species
Earth Celebrations
New York's Village Halloween Parade
2008 Parade the Circle
Liverpool Lantern Company
Illuminares Lantern Procession
Meet the Bands who Honk

We try to make sure that the Hebden Bridge Web news is correct, but if you are aware of any errors or omissions, please email us

If you have comments on Hebweb news please make a contribution to our discussion forum

More news

© Hebden Bridge Web