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Blue Elephant Theatre - Spring 2018

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Season preview

BLUE Elephant Theatre’s 2018 Spring Season is a creative mix of very new, work-in-progress and fully developed work. Embracing cross art form performances, numerous genres and bold themes, the programme also bubbles with energy and entertainment.

The Blue Elephant is delighted to be working with a variety of exciting artists, many for the first time as they begin the journey with a new show. From comedy characters to dance theatre, puppetry to experimental music, storytelling to scratch nights, the scope of the short spring season is vast, as are the talents and ambitions of the artists creating work at and for the Blue Elephant.


Oneness (Physical Theatre) – March 16 (8pm).

Oneness is a contemporary physical theatre play about identity and mainstream culture in today’s world and how this affects the way women see themselves. Taking a strong movement and physical theatre approach to create a vivid visual impact, Oneness encourages us to think about our perception of identity. It incorporates African and middle Eastern sound, a mixture of dance and live vocals, asking bold and fierce questions.

Written by Emmanuel Akwafo and directed by Liliana Tavares and Emmanuel Akwafo, Oneness is choreographed by Liliana Tavares and performed by Sara Mokonen, Ejiro Okorodudu and Zöe Grain.

The Glorious Tour (Dance) – March 21 to March 24 (8pm).

The Glorious Tour is a contemporary hip-hop dance theatre performance about many kinds of love.

Join Roni and Mia as they take us on a journey through family, personal identity, 90s R&B slo-jams, birthday cakes, flavoured condoms and first adventures in sex, love and death through dance and spoken word.

The Glorious Tour is a female-led exposé of the heightened emotions surrounding motherhood, adolescence, growing up and letting go. Combining talking, dancing, reminiscing and paper aeroplanes, The Glorious Tour provides unfiltered social commentary on contemporary life, inspiring audiences and provoking debate.

Lucy Crowe directs.

Sisyphus Distressing (Music/Theatre) – March 27 (8pm).

Sisyphus Distressing is an experimental music and theatre show, built around the myth of Sisyphus, as it was seen through the eyes of Albert Camus.

Devised by Gregory Emfietzis, Sisyphus Distressing focuses on the values, ethics and struggles of modern society, inspired by the well-known myth. It is a highly emotional sonic journey, melded with a variety of non-musical elements, including drama, lighting, movement, and video. The show is supported by the Arts Council and the Hinrichsen Foundation.

Sisyphus Distressing is presented by The Metapraxis Ensemble, a flexible group of musicians and collaborators. Their productions focus on presenting contemporary music structured around narratives, and reinforced by extra-musical elements. Metapraxis events have taken place in venues such as IKLECTIK, Cafe Oto, LSO St Lukes, The Space, TripSpace, Iris and Chelsea Theatres.

Mayra Stergiou directs a cast that includes Neil Georgeson (piano/narration), Angela Hui (percussion), Ilze Ikse (flutes), Loukia Loulaki (cello), Myrto Loulaki (voice) and Rebecca Raimondi (violin).

The Tell Tales (Theatre) – April 12 and 13 (8pm).

Gather round, there’s a story to be told. The Tell Tales is a brand new storytelling show for adults, exploring folk tales from across the globe. This piece of innovative new theatre immerses the audience in the magical worlds of tall tales and fantastical adventures. The storytellers cleverly weave a tapestry of myths and legends from the threads of yarns old and new.

The Tell Tales is a ragtag bunch of storytellers led by Paul Andrew and Minnie Wilkinson. Between them, they have worked on a wide range of storytelling and theatre projects, but are happiest when they’re all round a campfire swapping stories and tall tales. They are experienced children’s storytellers but decided the kids shouldn’t have all the fun, so The Tell Tales was born and is set to bring their thoughtful and silly stories to grown-ups of all ages.

At the Heart of Things (Theatre) – April 19 to April 22 (8pm, 5pm on Sunday, April 22)

At the Heart of Things is a dance-puppetry performance inspired by Oscar Wilde’s book De Profundis. Movement improvisation, visual imagery and devised text create a contemporary adaptation that dives into female sexuality, queer identity and homophobia.

In a dystopian world where growing fear takes centre stage, two young women, Lilly and Nina, are dancing in a nightclub. When a gunman enters and opens fire, nothing will be the same again. Lilly tries to make sense in a senseless world. What does it mean to be a woman? What does it mean to fall in love? Out of her frustration, Oscar Wilde will be born, to guide her, page by page, towards rediscovering her sexuality and womanhood.

At the Heart of Things is presented by Vertebra Theatre, a physical and visual theatre company that creates international devising, puppetry and film work. Their previous work includes Dark Matter, which had a sold-out run at the 2017 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Bailamos Opa! with Dance Guru to the Stars Aliki Mbakoyianni (Theatre) – April 25 and 26 (8pm).

When an ex-star dancer and wildly successful dance guru begins to feel like an ageing has-been, she decides to take to the stage and reclaim the limelight in a different way. Greek-Argentine global nomad, political activist and single-lady-again Aliki Mbakoyianni has a message for every dance body via a reflection on her own star-studded life.

Journalist, author and playwright Lorna V is an amateur dancer who overcame stepping in the wrong direction (just about) to develop a passion for Argentine tango. Her first full length show as a writer-performer is a feel-good piece with plenty of heart and humour.

The piece is written and performed by Lorna V and directed by Regina Hofmanova.

Before It Starts (Theatre) – May 8 to May 10 (8pm).

If you are squeamish about staring the hard truth of teenage homophobia in the eye and laughing lavishly in its face, then this isn’t the show for you. Based on true events, Before it Starts is a brutal and unforgiving take on teenage life, sex, social media and friendships. And it’s based on true events and real life accounts.

Yes, people actually said these things. Teenagers can be shockingly funny!

Before it Starts is presented by Naked Frank, a physical theatre company who create theatre that makes a positive difference. “We don’t believe that theatre can change the world, but it can change an opinion. Change enough opinions and you might just change the world.”

Written by Carleigh-Ann Portelli, Before it Starts is performed by Claire Louise Portelli, Rebecca Briley and Carleigh-Ann Portelli.

For more information or to book tickets, call the box office on 020 7701 0100 or visit