Preview: Bells and Spells at The Coronet Theatre

Bells and Spells Coronet Theatre Aurélia Thierrée photo © Richard Haughton
Bells and Spells Coronet Theatre Aurélia Thierrée photo © Richard Haughton

Bells and Spells is a spectacular and entertaining alternative Christmas show from the extraordinary imaginations of Victoria Thierrée Chaplin and Aurélia Thierrée. Following a European tour, this is the London premiere of the show, which was shared as a work in progress during the Coronet International Festival in 2017.

This enchanting piece of illusion and physical theatre combines humour with ethereal imagery and unpredictable props. Bells and Spells takes us into a magical world created by Aurélia Thierrée as she becomes an incurable kleptomaniac who is at the mercy of the objects that she steals. A coat hanger starts to walk, chairs and a table slide and slip away, and a dress suddenly takes on a life of its own. This surreal story is performed by Thierrée and dancer Jaime Martinez.

Director Victoria Thierrée Chaplin, who created the show, is the daughter of the legendary artist Charlie Chaplin and Oona O’Neill (daughter of playwright Eugene O’Neill). In 1970 she joined up with circus pioneer and actor Jean-Baptiste Thierrée, a renowned artist in circus, theatre and performance art. Amongst the many accolades throughout her long career, in 2006 she was awarded the Molière Award for designing the costumes for her son James Thierrée’s La Symphonie du Hanneton. She recently created and directed Auréia’s Oratorio with Aurélia.

Aurélia Thierrée has worked in theatre since childhood, in her parents’ Le Cirque Imaginaire and Cirque Invisible. She has worked across many performance art forms including film, theatre, on and off stage. She has also worked in cabaret and variety. As with Bells and Spells, she collaborated with Victoria Thierrée Chaplin on the making of the Aurélia’s Oratorio and Murmurs.

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