A Day out at Lakeside Arts, Nottingham this half term – Wheee! festival, Squarepeg, Octoville and the Luminarium


Our Sunday at Lakeside Arts Centre for Wheee! festival started at Octoville, the brainchild of artist and puppeteer Mark Parrett, who has created a micro mechanical town, with puppets.


The town even has a town planning department, complete with lots of post its and pens


I decided to remind people to water the flowers and L decided to encourage ‘trying to make the electric things tiny, the size of my drawing’.  She felt very strongly about this, for reasons I can’t fathom, but that is the beauty of Octoville, go see for yourself!


We weren’t alone, it seems, inspired by exploring this unusual town, visitors were keen to make all kinds of wonderful suggestions.


After a delicious cafe stop we decided to make the most of the afternoon sun and the boating lake in front of Nottingham University before catching the 6pm show of Rime.


Last time we got in an open boat it was a punt in Cambridge and it was a disaster. This however was a much more relaxing experience. Even if G insisted on screeching Land Ahoy every time we came within 10 metres of the edge of the lake.


Rime was rained off on Saturday, but it was a magical thing to see on Sunday as the sun lit up the fluffy white clouds and the day gave way to evening.


Square Peg are a contemporary circus, they combine stunning circus skills with music and storytelling. Rime retells the story of the Rime of the Ancient Mariner. It is an explosion of emotions, moods and movement, it is even a bit cheeky. Rime is touring, check out if it is coming anywhere near you here.


Nottingham is lucky to have such incredible arts events, Rime was part of Wheee! festival, which is on all week and is in turn part of Neat 14 festival, also on this week. Walking the tightrope…


Swirling on a rope, without the aid of a safety net….


Square Peg are a collective of acrobats, dancers, circus performers, musicians and actors who bring to life the treacherous journey of the Anicent Mariner’s ship. The fusion of their skills makes for a dizzying experience. My 7yo had so many questions about the story line and how the production used different conventions to tell the story. She wouldn’t settle for a simple answer, just as she did when we saw it at Camp Bestival two years ago, she wanted detailed explanations. I loved how thought provoking it was.


Mr A patiently explained that the medium of movement and dance was used to tell parts of the story. I think this is the bit when the Ancient Mariner is released from the grip of the albatross across his shoulders.


It is also an incredible and breathtaking feat of acrobatic skill! Later that night I had to pull up a synopsis of The Rime of The Ancient Mariner on my phone and read it to my daughter as a bedtime story, she had so many more questions, it was amazing.

The Luminarium is open for visits too, for those not in the know it is that giant inflatable you can see behind my daughter here. It is an amazing structure to walk round, and when you get to the arched windows, well I helped to make one of them two years ago and it took all day. Luminariums really are incredible!




1 Comment

  1. 28/05/2014 / 4:59 pm

    What a fantastic family day out! So much fun and the circus piece sounded really unique. Katie x

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