Shoreline | 5-6 August 2017

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After the success of last years performance, contemporary dance is coming back to the shoreline at Watergate Bay on Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 August.

One of many special pay-what-you-can performances taking place on some of Cornwall’s most iconic beaches featuring six dancers and one choir. At Watergate Bay there will be two performances each day at midday and 2pm. There will also be performances at Praa Sands and Porthmeor Beach, St Ives.

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Whether you live by it or make special trips to it, we are all, deep down, connected to the sea; often without ever knowing why. Perhaps it is about being human, about our vulnerability against such changeable yet awe-inspiring environments or a desire for healing and escape.

Billed as an ‘amphibious dancework’, Shoreline will see six dancers perform on rocks, sand and water alongside live choral music at three locations in Cornwall in an attempt to explore this mysterious connection with the sea.

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A metaphor for storms we all endure

According to Shoreline’s choreographer Simon Birch, it is a metaphor for the storms we all endure, the moments of tranquillity we seek and the borders and boundaries we fear or dare to cross. Shoreline is an ode to the coastline, and all that it means to us.

It is being brought to the water’s edge as part of the SALT landscape and dance Festival – an idea to merge dance performances into Cornwall’s beautiful landscapes. The project taps into a long-held sense of Cornish identity. It uses the shore in a way that’s reminiscent of Cornwall’s traditional ‘playing places’ – sites around the county historically used for open-air performance.

Inspired by the coastal environment, Shoreline is intended to deepen the cultural experience of being in Cornwall. As Antony Waller, director of SALT, puts it, “It’s not about being a spectator. As with a surfboard, the work will get people fully and viscerally engaged with the site.”

A team comprising dancers, a composer, a visual artist, a writer and a marine biologist will visit schools to develop ideas through a learning and sharing process. Composer Jon Hughes is collaborating with Cornish choirs to develop the choral works.

In parallel to the making of it, people in Cornwall are invited to share their thoughts on boundaries and coastal locations.

This performance is an experience for all ages, and one that Shoreline and SALT hope will stay with you forever. You’ll be truly immersed in the event – you might even get your feet wet!

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The other locations are Praa Sands and Porthmeor Beach, St Ives.

(Dress for whatever the weather is doing that day. Bring a picnic if you like. Be prepared for alterations in start times, depending on the climate and tide. Keep an eye out on Facebook and Twitter during the hours leading up to the show.)