A selection of the Fairey Band will be taking part in the upcoming COAL tour by the Gary Clarke Company, at the Contact Theatre, Manchester. For tickets and more info click here.
Marking the 30th anniversary of the end of the 1984/85 British Miners’ strike, award-winning choreographer Gary Clarke proudly presents COAL, a powerful and emotional dance theatre show about life at the coal face.
It brings together Clarke’s striking physical language performed by 7 professional dancers, a local cast of women and a live brass band, in a story about community, solidarity and survival.
Gary Clarke Company offer schools, colleges and universities the chance to take part in individually tailored workshops led by members of the company, watch a live performance of COAL and be invited to give a critical response to choreographer Gary Clarke as part of a unique post-show discussion.
To find out about booking a workshop and subsidised £9 show tickets for participants, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org prior to making a booking direct with Contact.
Strong, powerful and emotive, COAL explores the darker underbelly of the mining industry unearthing the true nature and body wrecking demands of a working class industry now almost forgotten.
It is based on years of personal research by Gary Clarke, including interviews with Anne Scargill, former wife of NUM president Arthur Scargill, and Betty Cook, the founders of Women Against Pit Closures.
“The COAL Autumn tour is dedicated to the survival and resilience of a man that understands what’s it’s like to fight for his life like many others. This man is my Dad” – Gary Clarke
Gary Clarke also spent time with Chris Skidmore of the National Union of Mineworkers, Bruce Wilson, author of Yorkshire’s Flying Pickets, Barnsley historian and author Brian Elliott and Paul Winter of the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign.
“COAL is a direct response to my upbringing in the working class mining village of Grimethorpe, South Yorkshire. It’s about trying to capture a time in British history that is too easily forgotten. It is an attempt at keeping the memories of the mining industry alive, an industry that I believe shaped the fabric of our society and how we live our lives today. These communities are at the heart of COAL.”Gary Clarke 2015.
Providing the distinctive voice of Margaret Thatcher is actor Steve Nallon, still best known for his many performances as the controversial Prime Minister in long-running cult TV satirical comedy hit Spitting Image.
Performers are pushed to physical and emotional extremes, with an evocative score of live brass classics organised by Musical Director Steven Roberts and a thunderous soundscape by Noise Artist Daniel Thomas.