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Arts and Entertainment on Whitehaven harbour

Street Entertainers    Night Performance

Saturday and Sunday Evening  at Whitehaven Harbour May 29-30th 2010

Last year's surreal but beautiful aerial ballet by Theater Tol over Whitehaven Harbour was possibly even out done by this year's night-time performances.

Piper appears

Wearing strange costumes with illuminated helmets that doubled as drums Sound Intervention from Ulverston created a surreal post-flood scene around the Hub on the Whitehaven sea front.

Fireworks and music by Sound Intervention

Using strange apparatus, fire and music they created a marvellously weird but entertaining atmosphere as the night encroached over the harbour.

Hat drummerCowbell percussion platform

The music started as simple beats on the strange illuminated drums that formed part of the helmets and then progressed to more complicated rhythms and tunes on specially created percussion platforms.

Trombone player

As the rhythm progressed more melodic instruments were introduced including bagpipes violin and finally brass instruments.

Brass players in strange costumes

A peculiar tented structure at the centre of the piece transformed itself several times, eventually forming a stage for the proficient musicians to play their brass instruments.

Fire and flares

Fire and flares were an important part of the presentation delivering a elemental feeling to the post apocalyptic world, although the acrid smoke became a bit too much at times.

Flags radiating from the bandstand

The crowd cheered appreciatively when the performance reached its finale with a crescendo of music and a colourful display of buntings unfurling and radiating from the central spire. This put everyone in a good mood for the stunning procession to follow.

Large fish lantern

Sarruga, the performers from Catalonia, had created Peixos (Catalan for fish) - a fantastical undersea world which was ideal for a parade around Whitehaven harbour.

Surruga peixos at Whitehaven

As we have seen with past firework displays the harbour provides a great location for any night-time event during summer as the still water reflecting the lights adds to the display.

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Coloured flares were used to provide extra light beneath the fish with this giant clown fish bathed in a red glow.

Large jellyfish lantern outside The Beacon

The ramp leading up to The Beacon gave a rare opportunity to see these magnificent creatures from above.

Shark swims past the Beacon.

It is slightly difficult to describe Sarruga's Peixos to anyone who has never seen a fish riding a bike. They were basically sea creatures created by making huge lanterns, animated by ropes and pulleys and propelled by cycle power.

Shark attack at Whitehaven

That probably doesn't convey the excitement they generated as the 20ft great white shark charged amongst the crowd with its huge thrashing tail causing them to duck and jets of smoke producing screams followed by laughter.

Fish attackscrowd with jet of steam

Surprisingly the shark wasn't the only fish to attack the crowd as this sudden jet of smoke caused people to jump out of the way.

Peixos lantern procession

The way the characters moved against the night sky often above a cloud of smoke did a remarkable job of replicating the undersea world.

fish on a bike

Without the smoke and lights the design of the pedal powered machines could be seen and appeared to take a fair amount of energy to propel along.

Huge Clown fish at Whitehaven

Jaws of the shark

The parade moved around the harbour from beyond The Beacon to the hub where the shark battled it out with the other fish and the crowd until it was the last fish swimming.

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Lakes Alive received funding from the National Lottery and have reached the semi-final stage in the National Lottery awards in the Best Arts Project category. If you enjoyed this event please vote for them in the competition and increase the chance of future events by visiting the Lottery awards website:


Fish lanterns against the Whitehaven night sky

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