Following last month's announcements of the line-up for Queer Contact (including music theatre from The Tiger Lillies and Opera North) and the news that Kate Tempest's Brand New Ancients tour plays two nights at Contact in late February, the rest of the Spring '14 programme at Contact is announced. It features outstanding performances, exhibitions and festivals from some national and international artists with theatre, dance, spoken word, music, cabaret, live art and comedy to choose from. It is for people of any age hungry for something exciting and unusual and will be presented in our spaces, around the city and online.
World-class dance from Vincent Dance Theatre:
Motherland: Tuesday 4 March, 7.30pm.
Driving its way through boob jobs and Botox, victim blaming, slut shaming, the might of motherhood and the challenge of childlessness, Motherland is a funny, moving dance piece about having it all. The company's brilliant, multi-talented ensemble of men, women and children look at the gender they were born into and the price they are paying for it.
Physical theatre from Ireland's junk ensemble:
The Falling Song: Saturday 8 March, 7.30pm.
Physicality is pushed to extremes in The Falling Song by Dublin's award-winning dance-theatre company, junk ensemble. Performed by an international all male cast and a choir of local children performing live and featuring a set of towering ladders, ropes and hundreds of apples, this critically acclaimed production looks at the nature of flying and falling and the dangerous relationship between the two.
Contact and Word of Warning present
Victoria Melody: Major Tom. Thursday 20 March, 8pm. £11/6. Over 14s. Post-show talk.
This one-woman, one-dog show features Victoria and her Basset Hound, Major Tom. It recounts how research into pedigree dog shows led them to compete at Crufts and the Mrs England 2013 beauty pageant.
A Flying Solo Commission
Jackie Hagan: Some People Have Too Many Legs. Saturday 22 March, 7pm.
Jackie Hagan is a council estate Rainbow Brite. Last summer she suddenly had her leg amputated and never got told why. This is the infectiously optimistic story of a dog-eared family that learned to say ‘I Love You', some constantly hung over nurses and a big fat false leg called George.
The Contact Flying Solo 2012 commission winner returns following a national tour.
Sophie Willan: The Novice Detective. Saturday 22 March, 8:30pm.
Sophie's father is missing, leaving a crumpled photo and a 90's pop album with encrypted lyrics… With help from the audience and her slightly psychic Gran, Sophie is determined to crack the case. Directed by Nathan Evans.
Offsite, Contact co-present a major new show with and at Manchester's Royal Exchange Theatre: Mark Storer's Puffball, followed by a special post-show cabaret from Mother's Ruin:
Roundhouse in partnership with Royal Exchange Theatre, Contact and Cast present
Puffball: Sunday 8 and Monday 9 Jun
Main house show: 7.30pm.
Show and Cabaret (9pm)
In the aftermath of an explosion, two survivors remain. One will tell their story, the other will build a home… Puffball is a new production devised and performed by a young LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) cast in collaboration with renowned director Mark Storor and world-class circus performers. Inspired by personal stories – at times heart-breaking, at times joyful – the show will be the culmination of a yearlong project working with young people identifying as LGBT from towns and cities across the UK. Fusing storytelling with beautiful circus performances, Puffball is set to a live score by award-winning composer Jules Maxwell.
Contact and Royal Exchange Theatre, in association with Cake Tin Foundation and Rude Grrl present
Mother's Ruin: Puffball Cabaret
Following the performance of Puffball in the main-house, Mother's Ruin invite you to a raucous late night cabaret in the auspicious surrounds of the Royal Exchange Theatre's Great Hall.
Finally, July sees the return of Contact's biennial international extravaganza, Contacting The World festival: an international theatrical exchange process which culminates in a week-long festival of shows and events. For 2014, young artists from England and Scotland have been paired with theatre companies from Iran, Jamaica and India. The full line-up will be announced in 2014.