As founder (and still co-director) of Beverley Puppet Festival, (along with other festival co-director Kerrin Tatman and the team), Anna was kept very busy for large chunks of 2022 in the run up to this festival in July, as well as its aftermath. It was the biggest edition yet – involving 41 companies in just one weekend! – however Indigo Moon Theatre did manage to perform SeedHeart at the festival too, and, as a local company, was one of those involved in the festival’s largest ever Outreach project. In our case we took SeedHeart and workshops to four local East Riding of Yorkshire schools, which brought the festival to audiences who may otherwise have missed out. We were delighted that in November the festival was awarded a Remarkable Hull and East Yorkshire tourism award for the second time – as best small tourism event, reaching over 10,000 people!
Meanwhile Indigo Moon Theatre received funding from Arts Council England and Hull City Council for phase two of SeedHeart – to refine the show with Steve Tiplady and Haviel Perdana and to develop it while reaching local audiences. This meant that we were able to deliver the show and associated workshops to 20 local schools and libraries, mainly in Hull, between March and November, and to develop future marketing strategies with the support of Darren Walter and Pablo Colella. SeedHeart also featured at the Big Malarkey festival in Hull, but before that went to London in January (Enfield and Poplar), later followed by the Puppet Animation Festival in Scotland in April ( Dumfries, Aberdeen, Cumbernauld and New Galloway), followed by Wath-upon Dearne (near Rotherham) and later Scunthorpe, Hemel Hempstead, Knaresborough Wellness Festival and Great Malvern Festival of Stories – not forgetting Anna’s first solo performance outside the UK in October – when SeedHeart attended an international festival of theatre for young people, in Iasi (pronounced Yash), Romania.
Mermarella also swam again, (with Frances Allison) at the Isle of Wight Children’s Festival and at the Memo Arts Centre in Barry, Wales. We also shared our shadow theatre skills in our first ever self-hosted shadow theatre masterclass at our production base at Hull Scrapstore in February, and in August at Goole Junction Haviel and Anna led two weeks of summer shadow theatre residencies for children – as part of the healthy food programme in the East Riding of Yorkshire.
Just as we thought we were going to take a rest; a very exciting commission came in and kept us busy between August – October, involving Anna Ingleby, Haviel Perdana and Susanna Samanek. We hope that we will be able to disclose what this was by this time next year!?
In November and December, Anna was delighted to join the team for Wild Rumpus again in delivering the Lanterns at Chester Zoo (for her fourth season, this time with team wolf, mainly operating a wolf cub, created by the artful Alison Duddle :). She took leave early however, to deliver a five-day residency at Wentworth Castle Gardens for the National Trust and Barnsley Council just before Christmas, with SeedHeart performed twice daily – while Manju Gregory braved the cold outside the conservatory and engaged many families with our interactive shadow theatre gazebo. Lots of people enjoyed pulling strings, changing scenery and discovering exciting shadows with weird and wonderful shadow creatures!
2022 has felt like a momentously busy year!
We thank all our audiences, partners, friends, funders and associates for all your support and wish you a very happy new year in 2023 – and here’s hoping our paths converge again soon!
Anna Ingleby, January 2023