A team of French street artists will use technical wizardry to transform Derwentwater in the Lake District into a magical fluid stage on Friday 10th and Saturday 11th August.
The cast of Ilotopie will literally walk on water during two free performances of Fous de Bassin (Water Fools) which will take place on the lake’s surface.
It will take a team of 20 people and a cargo ship full of equipment to create the amazing floating spectacle. The technical team have spent a week turning a corner of Derwentwater into a fantasy water wonderland.
A variety of weird and wonderful props including a car towing a caravan, a 12-foot tall floating bed complete with oars and a giant penny farthing will be unloaded onto the lake.
Fireworks, flames and a musical soundtrack will accompany the water-borne performances that start as darkness falls at 9.30pm.
The show is being brought to Keswick by Lakes Alive, Keswick Tourism Association, and Theatre by the Lake, in partnership with the National Trust and with additional support from Keswick Town Council.
Julie Tait, the director of Kendal Arts International which creates Lakes Alive, says:
Led by artistic director Bruno Schnebelin, Ilotopie spent years in planning and design to solve the technical difficulties involved in staging a show on water. Since its launch, Fous de Bassin has made a huge splash around the world.
The team is made up of a stage manager, musical composers, lighting technicians, choreographers, technical constructers and performers.
Most of the props including the car have electric motors attached to them to propel them through the water. Others, such as the three-metre high penny farthing, are operated manually by the performer walking in them.
Many of the constructions such as the tree and the bed arrive in parts and have to be rebuilt before being lowered into the water.
Laurent Ide, Ilotopie’s technical director, says:
Fous de Bassin has been greeted with critical acclaim around the world in cities including Sydney, Chicago and London. During the past two decades Ilotopie has become one of the world’s best loved street theatre companies.
The performances, which are free, will take place on Friday 10 & Saturday 11 August at Crow Park (just opposite Theatre by the Lake) at 9.30pm.