Luke Hallgarten is artistic director of The Revel Puck Circus, who are coming to Lewisham with their fantastic five-star show, The Wing Scuffle Spectacular from 15th December until 8th January 2022.
As part of LIT!, the finale of Lewisham’s year as the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s London Borough of Culture 2022, this astonishing production presents the brightest young talent of the London circus scene, promising to clear all preconceptions of circus and welcome audiences into the world of the Revel Pucks. Audiences can expect a joyous and absurdist examination of fear, filled with to the brim with home-grown talent and a diverse roster of artists. Showcasing an assortment of specialties there is something for everyone, from shocking swinging chainsaws and astonishing acrobatics to a terrific teeterboard trio.
The Wing Scuffle Spectacular runs Thursday 15th December 2022 – Saturday 8th January 2023. More information can be found here.
The Wing Scuffle Spectacular is coming to Beckenham Place Park this festive season, what can you tell us about it?
Firstly, we are hyped to be back in London! Coming home with this show feels really special, especially over the festive season. The Wing Scuffle Spectacular is our biggest show to date with a troupe of 20 people making it all happen.
It all takes place within our heated big top tent that sits in the middle of our circus village. The show really starts the minute you come through our gates and the immersive experience begins. You might be offered a cup of tea by someone, or invited into a caravan to help sort out costumes. Expect an evening full of heart, laughter, absurdity and immense circus!
Tell us a little more about The Revel Puck Circus and how it was initially created?
The Revel Pucks started from a want to create work that celebrated circus’s past, but that wasn’t afraid of its future. For us this means keeping circus outside of traditional performance venues and touring in big top tents, the outdoors and creating site-specific work.
We wanted to create circus that moved things forward and changed public perception. We are deeply invested in the dramaturgy of our shows and work very hard to ensure we are creating work not for our sector, but for the communities we tour to. We’re still at the start of our journey really, but with each stand we find our feet more and more and hopefully this is the beginning of a long adventure!
How has The Revel Puck Circus changed things for you, and other local London artists?
For me personally, it’s such a privilege to lead this company. The people that make up the troupe are so extraordinary and special. I am humbled on a daily basis by the senior management, especially when touring the crew and artists continue to astound me with their humility, commitment and focus on building a close-knit community.
London is our home and we are hoping to one day have a permanent site for our big top to create a vibrant cultural hub of circus. We really believe in the power of community and our very own Fiona Thornhill (one of the artists in the show)) has organised a series of circus jams in the big top for professional artists over our run in Lewisham. This is free space given to the community to play and experiment together, it’s going to be super cool!
It’ll be part of the finale of Lewisham’s London Borough of Culture, why was it important to you to mark this with an alternative kind of festive entertainment?
We are super hyped to be in Lewisham, it’s such a popping borough with an amazing community and we feel really privileged to be a part of LIT! their London Borough of Culture finale event. We are also really happy that it’s all taking place in Beckenham Place Park, it’s such a beautiful green space and it shows the integrity of the team within Lewisham that they are putting on the finale event in the heart of the community. There’s loads of great stuff happening over the festive season in the park and I’d really encourage everyone to check out the rest of the programme.
Explore the We are Lewisham programme for all LIT! celebrations here – http://www.wearelewisham.com/lit
What’s been the biggest challenge in putting together The Wing Scuffle Spectacular?
I guess it’s just the scale of the thing! We are a young company creating big work with a lot of people. Currently the biggest challenge is keeping the show on the road financially, we don’t receive regular funding and really rely on audiences coming out to see us. It’s always really scary when you first launch a new stand for the show, but we truly believe in the work and if we never took risks, we’d never do anything.
What would you say to anyone thinking of coming to The Wing Scuffle Spectacular?
You’re going to have a great time and it is the perfect way to get in the cosy Christmas spirit! There’s delicious jerk on site from local KTG kitchen, we’ve got festive drinks and snacks plus a show that is bursting with talent. No animals, no ringmasters and no bad clowns. Just a group of young people passionate about making work we believe in.