About the project
Collective Cymru, led by National Theatre Wales, selected to produce Festival UK* 2022 project
30 teams, bringing together scientists, technologists, engineers, artists and mathematicians from across the UK, took part in a three-month research and development process to reimagine a festival of creativity. Following a rigorous assessment process, 10 Creative Teams are now being commissioned to take their ground-breaking projects into full production for next year’s Festival UK* 2022.
Intended to bring people together and showcase creativity, the 10 projects will include events, public engagement activities, participation opportunities and learning programmes reaching millions of children and young people, demonstrating the importance of creativity in people’s lives and our collective futures.
Collective Cymru, led by National Theatre Wales, are delighted to have been selected to deliver one of the ten projects. From the outset, we set about rewiring how a project of this scale could be conceived, produced and shared. Our project is collaborative, inclusive, fundamentally Welsh at heart and global in its vision.
Our collaboration began by gathering people from across Wales, across disciplines and with a broad range of life experiences to form our Creative Team: from the Centre for Alternative Technology in Machynlleth and Jukebox Collective based in Cardiff to Frân Wen in Gwynedd, creative technologists and innovators from Sugar Creative and Clwstwr, a journalist and community organiser, writers, theatre-makers and artists to representatives from national companies: Disability Arts Cymru, National Theatre Wales and Ffilm Cymru.
Each member unlocked new perspectives, challenging preconceptions of how a creative project might be designed. Together we found a common purpose – a commitment to radical inclusion. Our aim is to produce an unforgettable new cultural experience – co-created and co-designed with communities across Wales – and accessible to all. Our inspiration and touchpoint throughout our R&D has been the Well-Being of Future Generations Act – Wales’ greatest gift to the world: a globally respected piece of legislation which addresses the inequalities of the present by foregrounding the welfare and rights of our descendants.
Inspired by the radical inclusion of this act, we drew on our team’s networks to listen to perspectives that are so often excluded or overlooked. Our project concept has been shaped by the dynamism of those radical voices of contemporary Wales.
We committed ourselves to designing a project which will provide much needed rocket fuel to creative freelancers, the wider creative sector and to specific locations in Wales that have been hit hard by the pandemic. To do so, we have already begun to develop new kinds of partnerships within communities across Wales and with international media and research partners.
Our project will showcase Wales’ strengths to the world – our vibrant, resilient communities, exceptional film and TV creative and production talent, spellbinding dramatic landscapes and vibrant towns and cities, creative experimentation in immersive technology and globally respected site-specific performance.
Full details of all festival commissions are being kept under wraps to allow the Creative Teams to turn their ideas into reality, but projects will take us from the land, to the sea, to the air and even outer space, using pioneering technology and the power of the imagination. The festival programme will be announced, along with a new name, later this year.
Creative Team members:
National Theatre Wales: Lorne Campbell, Claire Doherty, Marc Rees; Centre for Alternative Technology: Rebecca Upton; Clwstwr: Shirish Kulkarni, Robin Moore; Disability Arts Cymru: Kaite O’Reilly; Ffilm Cymru Wales: Pauline Burt; Sugar Creative: Will Humphrey; Writer and Professor in Creativity, Swansea University: Owen Sheers; Youth Arts Network Cymru: Liara Barussi (Jukebox Collective), Gethin Evans (Frân Wen).
* working title
Image: Sugar Creative.
About Festival UK* 2022
Festival UK* 2022, a major UK-wide festival of creativity and innovation, is commissioning 10 major public engagement projects designed to reach millions, bring people together and showcase the UK’s creativity globally. The festival will take place in 2022 and each project will bring new opportunities for creative people in sectors that have been significantly impacted by COVID-19.