Fireworks and Fun...

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Saturday 13 September 2003 9.47am
... it's the Thames Festival this weekend

*** Remember - the Fireworks are on the Saturday this year ***
*** First large scale event on Jubilee Gardens for 7 years ***

"Please note that unlike previous years there will be no fireworks display on the river following the Procession of Lights on Sunday 14th September.

However on Saturday 13th, there will be a spectacular show with fire and pyrotechnics called Sticky. This performance takes place in Jubilee Gardens at 8pm. "

From <>

The Thames Festival in association with The South Bank Centre present Sticky by Improbable Theatre with the World Famous

Suppoted by: South Bank Centre, Arts Council England, Mayor of London, Arts & Business, Unilever, Lever Faberge. Volunteer participants provided in partnership with Lever Fabergé and Unilever Ice Cream & Frozen Foods

Susannah Clapp, giving a round up in The Observer of the most innovative and exciting events in 2002 called Sticky “the most imaginative event of the year”. Created as an outdoor spectacle by Improbable Theatre in collaboration with pryro-wizards The World Famous, Sticky will be the first large scale theatrical event presented on Jubilee Gardens for over seven years.

“The first thing you are aware of is the noise. It sounds both familiar and strange, like the effort of 1,000 insect wings flapping. Then you suddenly realise what it is: the sound of hundreds of feet of sticky tape being unwound.

The sheer scale of this piece is thrilling. It is like watching someone build the pyramids or the Eiffel Tower. There are plenty of crowd-pleasing fireworks, but what sets this apart from mere spectacle is metaphor. The sticky tape edifice miraculously rises from the ground but the human effort involved is incredible. It sways against the night sky, ethereal, beautiful and mysterious, its top looking like an exquisite spun sugar cap. Thirty minutes later, it is gone, destroyed in a blaze of gunpowder, shooting stars and Catherine wheels. All that effort for nothing. It makes humans seem like mayflies or the delicate blue-winged insect that flies inside the sticky tape tower, beating her wings desperately against its sides.

There is wit at work here, too: at one point the tower is transformed into an incendiary Big Ben, time destroying all in its path. Improbable has also learned the lesson that this kind of large outdoor event requires a very strong element of secular ritual and magic. Figures move across the landscape conjuring fire, the loudspeakers blare out stirring music of the kind that makes religion or fascism seem attractive, the big bangs are cleverly spaced against the quieter more reflective moments. At the end, the tower blazes and collapses. Balloons drift lazily across the night sky like little bubbles or like the O-gape of surprise that your mouth makes when you've just witnessed something amazing and quite unexpected.” The Guardian.
Saturday 13 September 2003 10.47am
Fantastic, I'll be there.
But I bet the usual wet blankets will moan about cost, traffic, litter
and the sight of people having fun.
Saturday 13 September 2003 1.39pm
Bah humbug! I`m going and I`m gonna love it!

I turn into a little girl again every time theres a fire work display.

I adooooore them.

Saturday 13 September 2003 2.48pm
I'm going up there too...

...I love fireworks - also, do we know the date of the Lord Mayor's firework show yet???? November sometime, I recall??

Also, for the Potter's Field posters...have made mental note to check out the state of the grass at Jubilee Gardens...

Anyone else think that "the Optimist Lp" by Turin Brakes is a great album?


Monday 15 September 2003 1.13pm
I missed Sticky but saw the lantern procession last night which was better than ever. What was Sticky like? and does anybody know why there weren't the usual Group F fireworks this year?
Monday 15 September 2003 1.16pm
See for some photos and a video of Sticky

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Monday 15 September 2003 6.35pm
Well everyone, if you missed sticky, don`t be too dissapointed.

I enjoyed parts of it, but all in all, I didn`t 'get' it

Was I looking for something too deep in it? I don`t know, but it seemed very 'conceptual'

Bring back the old 10 minute firework display, I have always enjoyed that greatly!

Monday 15 September 2003 8.44pm
I agree that it was difficult to grasp a "storyline" in the show... so they could do with promoting that (if there is one) re-counting of any "plot" would be a vague one.

Overall, I did enjoy it though - maybe because I got a spot right at the barrier...but despite that, I thought it good to have some more alternative entertainment - afterall, we will soon have the Lords Mayor's and Bonfire Night , both with trad firework shows...???

Thinking back, I guess they were trying to create a Cirque du Soleil feel...outdoors...and didn't quite pull it off...

Am glad to report, I have not yet ventured to Potter's Field to gawp at David Plain, and would much prefer to see Sticky again...

BTW, the grass at Jubilee Gardens is nearly as bad as Potter's Fields - reminder (1) strike mental note from list and (b) apologise for incorrect use of apostrophies...on "Potters Fields" - feel free to correct me at will


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