Some unusual and impressive immersive artistic pieces will be at the Olympic Park and on the streets of Hackney Wick this summer as part of Walkie Talkie.
Parents keen to give their children an injection of culture over the holidays might choose to become a bee for the afternoon (avoiding wily badgers), turning into a tuning fork or, for older offspring, even debating issues with politicians round a bike-driven mobile table.
Jay Miller, artistic director of The Yard Theatre, which is in charge of the Walkie Talkie project said: “We asked people in the area to submit ideas and then we chose from them – we have a fantastic line up.”
Branding it “the future of theatre”, The Yard has brought involving pieces to the streets, parks, waterways and roof tops of east London.
Jay said: “What theatre is doing at the moment is making everything very immersive – so you have to be in that place, right at that moment to experience something.
“It’s really exciting when theatre has a different relationship with the audience – you’re not just sat in a dark room any more watching what’s happening on the stage.”
These are our five highlights from the programme, which runs from today (Thursday) until August 1.
1. Ellie Harrison – This Is What Democracy Looks Like
Jump on a roving round-table bike , made for seven people, with local politicians – including MP for Poplar and Limehouse Jim Fitzpatrick and Hackney Wick councillor Jessica Webb.
Copper Box Arena, July 16, 17 and 18, 1pm - 6pm, free
2. Nigel Barrett and Louise Mari – Be Bees
Take on that lifelong dream to become a bee for a day – but watch out for the badgers. The Queen Bee of Queen Elizabeth Park will guide you through your mission, which you can come dressed as a bee for, or she will provide plenty of dress up at the venue.
Alfred’s Meadow, July 18 and 19, 11.30am - 3.30pm, free
3. Will Dickie – Team Of The Decades
In this team show for 10 people, one coach and one captain you are part of a team that will take on the Olympic Park’s landscape in a journey of understanding . Mysterious, but sounds like it might be fun.
The Yard Theatre, Hackney Wick, July 24, 25 and 26, various times, £5
4. Amy Sharrocks – Drift
This is another one for older, introspective children or parents exhausted and stressed from looking after the kids. Participants can join artist Amy Sharrocks in her boat and drift and meander in a nocturnal voyage in a swimming pool, as night turns to dawn. The performance lasts 15 minutes and is for one person at a time, with seven slots available.
London Aquatics Centre, August 1, 11.30pm-5am, free, but via ticket lottery