This was in many ways a stepping stone for Bash Street Theatre, which saw the company significantly raising its profile nationally and internationally. A grant from Penwith DC and Creative Skills enabled the company to work on developing and refining the new show ‘Frankenstein!’ The show went on to receive fantastic national reviews and perform at The National Theatre’s ‘Watch This Space’, Streets of Brighton Festival, and throughout the UK and Brittany, France.
The company was also helped by the dti to showcase its popular silent-movie show ‘CLIFFHANGER’ at an important street theatre festival in France. This resulted in the company gaining several contracts in France, Germany and Belgium for 2006. The schools project piloted in June, and funded by Penwith DC, was also a great success.
2005 was also a challenging year for Bash Street with a drastic cut in grant aid, funding for a schools tours cut at the last minute, and the urgent need to find new premises. The company (thanks to Penwith DC) has now relocated from the BT building to the former Penzance Gym Club premises in Cross Street, and hope to offer community workshops here in the future. The winter has been hard because of the cancelled schools tour (due to a change in government regulations) and the company has been working hard to reduce costs and increase income.
The shows in 2006 Bash Street repertoire
- Re-worked version of ‘CLIFFHANGER’ – a real life silent movie
- ‘EnviroMen’ – an environmental primary schools show
- ‘The Ravioli Brothers’ – a comedy, unicycling show
- ‘The Bash Street Bobbies/Les Gendarmes’ – comic stilt walkabout show
Looking toward the future
If the company wants to survive it is vitally important that it secures funding for projects in 2006/7. With this in mind the company is looking to find festivals who will commission a new show for 2007. This will reduce the level of ACE investment needed and make a grant more likely to succeed.
The company will also be urgently seeking funding for winter schools projects as this is necessary to balance the work between winter/summer. In the short term the company will be applying to ACE for funding to produce a new small-scale street show for 2007, in addition to some much needed office equipment.
Bash Street is also committed to supporting Penwith’s Festival project, as this is an important development in Cornwall. The company will also continue to take a leading role in ensuring that a new national organisation is established to support and advocate street theatre companies and performers.