Introducing our artist collaborators for The Lanterns at Chester Zoo

Wild Rumpus have announced the artists who will be helping them to create an incredible illuminated adventure for Chester Zoo’s annual Christmas spectacle, The Lanterns.  Running on selected nights from 23 November to 23 December, the event raises vital funds to help support the zoo’s work as a conservation charity fighting to prevent extinction around the world.  2018 will be Wild Rumpus’ second year producing The Lanterns with Chester Zoo.  

They’ll be working with Global Grooves, an artist led carnival arts organisation based in the North West, who will be making giant illuminated snails that will roam the Garden of Delight.   

Leading outdoor arts organisationEmergency Exit Artswill build five ‘carnival-style’ butterfly costumes and train locally recruited artists in their use.  

They’ll also be working with Alison Duddle, artistic director and founder of A Bird in The Hand theatre. Alison is a puppeteer, mask maker, director and former Artistic Director at Horse & Bamboo theatre. Alison will be making beautiful woodland puppet lanterns. She will also support the rehearsal and upskilling of other performers.  

Sara Blackburnwill be creating a troupe of brightly lit penguin costumes, along with a curious white rabbit to greet audiences at Wonderland. Sara has previously worked with Caribbean carnivals and troupes to design and create award-winning, large scale statement pieces and accompanying costumes.  

West Yorkshire’s Thingumajig Theatrewill be creating large scale Emu character costumes and training performers in large scale puppeteering and audience interaction. Rag & Bone  Northern artists collective will produce two giraffe structural backpack costumes, four large illuminated reindeer costumes and rehearsing and training performers in their manipulation. Dizzy O’Dare, a contemporary circus and outdoor theatre company, will support the casting, rehearsals and live performances at Chester Zoo, mentoring the programming team at Wild Rumpus in casting and direction. They will also work one-to one with performers on their character costume work, puppetry and outdoor interaction with audiences.  

Company co-director Rowan Hoban said, ‘Here at Wild Rumpus we’re having the most incredible autumn, dreaming up and creating incredible worlds that will come to life at Chester Zoo this Christmas. Bringing together and working with such a talented range of artists is a joy. The underpinning program of support and talent development ensures our volunteers and emerging makers are benefiting hugely from the network of creatives surrounding the event.’ 

The Lanterns will take place from November 23 – December 23 at Chester Zoo. Full details and tickets are available from the Chester Zoo website or from their box office. (01244 380280)