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NEW SEASON: Beaford Arts brings quirky shows to the villages

By North Devon Journal  |  Posted: August 22, 2013

  • Spitfire Solo.

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MORE extraordinary events in unexpected places are promised in Beaford Arts' autumn season. Plus, there's an exciting new focus on shows made for, and inspired by, North Devon.

With events ranging from Arthurian tales told on Exmoor to Bhangra parties in Chulmleigh, Beaford continues to bring good nights out to rural communities during the colder months.


Hunting The Giant's Daughter brings the oldest Arthurian legend to life in a story whose action runs along the North Devon coast en route from Arthur's court in Cornwall to Wales.

The story is the first recorded mention of King Arthur, and comes straight from the 13th Century Mabinogion – a collection of medieval Welsh tales. It is brought to 21st century life by Adverse Camber, who blend dynamic storytelling with Welsh and jazz-influenced music.

As well as performing the show in Berrynarbor (Friday, September 27) and Lee (Saturday, September 28), in a one-off performance Adverse Camber will tell extracts of the story during a mile-and-a-half walk through the woodland gorge at Exmoor's Heddon's Mouth on Sunday, September 29. Tickets are limited and expected to sell out fast.

Landscape II, a new show by Melanie Wilson, is set in and around the village of Darracott, near Croyde. The region's landscape forms the main backdrop to the piece, in which three women separated by a 100 years begin a conversation through their letters, diaries, drawings, and photographs. Its only North Devon date is at West Buckland School, on Saturday, October 5.

Burn the Curtain bring family show The Bureau of Extraordinance Survey to the villages of Buckland Brewer (Friday, November 29) and Shebbear (Saturday, November 30). They need you to assist in the reconstruction in miniature of your community and put your village back on the map.


With a name meaning "off the beaten track", Compagnie Hors Piste was formed by graduates of the French National Centre of Circus Arts. They trained in Big Top circus, but decided instead to create shows combining acrobatics, ladders, dance and stunts which can be performed in everyday public spaces.

Ordures et Ménagères tells the story of a daily routine in which things aren't quite what they seem. Household objects find new uses and the everyday becomes a spectacle as audience members see the circus behind daily life. (High Bickington Community Centre on Sunday, September 22, 4pm).


Beaford Arts is behind two regional tours bringing festival favourites to village halls across the South West this autumn.

Jamie Smith's Mabon, who blend world music, Celtic roots and rabble-rousing funk folk, have headlined shows for Celtic Connections, WOMAD, and a host of high-profile festivals across Europe. After playing at West Anstey on Thursday, September 12 and Burrington on Friday, September 13, they're heading straight off to play another European festival that weekend.

Bhangra band RSVP hope to get everyone partying Punjabi style (Berrynarbor, Saturday, November 16; Woolacombe Friday, November 22; Chulmleigh Saturday, November 23).


There's a special date with Christine Tobin, winner of Best Vocalist in the BBC Jazz Awards 2008, on her tour supporting her new album A Thousand Kisses Deep featuring the songs of Leonard Cohen (Kings Nympton on Friday, October 25).


LE NAVET Bete play three North Devon dates on the tour of their new show Once Upon A Time In A Western.

Hero Billy seeks his gun-toting revenge on corrupt Mayor Naise, but in a show featuring a banjo-playing cactus anything could happen and probably will. With Le Navet Bete, no two nights are the same. (Chulmleigh, Thursday, October 10; Burrington, Friday, October 11; Winkleigh, Saturday, October 12).


The Iranian Feast features Abbas – a loving father, a great friend, and a fantastic cook – who invites you to an evening tasting traditional Persian food, song, and Iranian dancing. This new theatre piece, set in modern day Tehran, comes from Farnham Maltings (Dolton, Friday, October 11; Lee, Saturday, October 12).

Spitfire Solo plays Winkleigh (Friday, November 8) and High Bickington (Saturday, November 9) in the run-up to Remembrance Sunday, and tells the story of an 80-year-old, ex-Battle of Britain pilot who relives past glories, losses, and the heady days of blue skies and battles as he faces an unexpected new challenge.


Kid Carpet brings Blast Off, the sequel to his Kid Carpet and the Noisy Animals, to North Devon this autumn. This time, the Noisy Animals are officially the biggest band in the world – so big there's nowhere on earth big enough for them to perform. So they're off to play a gig on the moon broadcast live to the whole planet (Welcombe, Saturday, November 16).

And don't forget The Tallest Horse On Earth, a warm-hearted puppet show from Cornwall's Silly Boys told with live music, shadow puppetry and a large dollop of giant smashing (Kings Nympton, Thursday, October 17; West Anstey, Friday, October 18).

Details: www.beaford-arts.org.uk or phone 01805 603201.

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