Theatre / 600 HIGHWAYMEN

Preview: In Between Time 2017

By Steve Wright , Tuesday Jan 24, 2017

Pictured above: Lone Twin’s Beastie. Pic: Pekka Makinen

This February sees the return of In Between Time, Bristol’s biennial festival of adventurous live art, performance and more. More than just a festival, though, the In Between Time team works all year round, programming dance, theatre, live art, activism, clubs and music, in venues from theatres and galleries to city streets, heritage buildings and forests, to “tell stories that surprise, inspire or act as a catalyst for change”.

Here’s Helen Cole, Artistic Director/CEO of In Between Time, to tell us more about IBT17.

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So, Helen: any overarching themes to IBT 2017?
We were programming this year’s In Between Time during 2016 as the world piled one uncertainty upon another. It’s been hard to ignore this transitional and tumultuous time. The theme for IBT17 is Stand Up Stand Out, inviting people to come together to take a stand for the things they believe in, with a programme of 40 exceptional artists all with urgent things to say about the world.

Helen Cole, Artistic Director/CEO of In Between Time

How does the programme come together – do you contact performers whose work you want to see, or do they come to you?
We are in constant contact with artists and we are always open to new conversations with those whose work we do not know. We programme through a mix of seeing shows, conversation, recommendation and keeping our ears to the ground. Increasingly we work in partnership to bring unusual things to Bristol that would not be seen here. Examples of this in IBT17 include 600 HIGHWAYMEN’s incredible international show The Record, with its cast of 46 Bristolians developed with Bristol Old Vic, and the music programme we have developed with Colston Hall for the unusual immersive environment of the IMAX at At-Bristol.

What’s the guiding spirit, the mission statement of IBT?
We work with artists and audiences to create extraordinary art works and unusual experiences. We work across dance, theatre, live art, activism, clubs and music and our events take place anywhere: from theatres and galleries to city streets and forests.
The artists with whom we work are brave and challenging, and our audiences share this same adventurous spirit. Together we create art that represents the world in all its beauty and complexity. We encourage artists and audiences to think, to dream, to do things they have not yet imagined.

And why is Bristol a good home for a festival like yours?
IBT started in Bristol in 2001. This city, its diversity and divisions, its radicalism and history, provides the grit that spurs us on to be ever more wild and adventurous in the way we work. We care about Bristol but we also seek to change it, to use culture to excite and incite people to improve this city as a place to live and work.

In Between Time 2017 Feb 8-12, various venues. For more info, visit


Power of four

Helen Cole picks out a quartet of IBT17 highlights

600 HIGHWAYMEN’S ‘The Record’. Pic: Maria Baranova

The Record
“A UK premiere with acclaimed New York theatre company 600 HIGHWAYMEN, The Record is a unique collaboration with 45 incredible Bristol – veering between theatre, dance and group hallucination.”

‘The Dawn’. Pic: Limbic Cinema

The Dawn
“In 2015 In Between Time created A Storm; in 2017 we summon The Dawn. Taking the adventurous essence of IBT17, we will transform Bristol’s former police and fire station into an incredible immersive art party for one night only. As before, the party will mix world-leading DJs and sound artists with immersive technology to unleash Bristol’s glamorous night owls and dawn creatures for one very special night.”

Lone Twin’s Beastie [pictured top] is conjured from the imaginations of children. Beastie will arrive in Bristol and pop up at unexpected times and in the least likely locations over the course of the festival. At first Beastie may be met with trepidation – but, over time, the city begins to welcome the creature in as children are invited to attend workshops over the five days to imagine and complete Beastie’s story.”

Local artists
Also check out the local artists’ programme, including work by Alex Bradley, Hannah Rachel and Rachael Clerke.

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