‘My life has changed so massively, I don’t really know if it’s my life that’s changed or whether it’s Trumpington that’s changed’
Trumpington Voices is a public art project from Menagerie Theatre Company.
It is led by Patrick Morris, Menagerie’s Co-Artistic Director, and here he describes the project’s genesis.
“As a new writing theatre company, we are primarily interested in creating new plays that explore human relationships – not only to each other, but to the world around us. The idea behind this project was to understand how people related to the place they live in. What is different about this place, Trumpington, is that its geography, architecture, population and identity are changing radically, due to the construction (ultimately) of 4,000 new dwellings over a 10-year period. This includes 3 new schools, a guided busway, a nature reserve, a country park and the growth in population by over 10,000 people. For some, this has been a process of loss and mourning. For others, it has meant a new beginning. But all Trumpington residents, no matter how long they have lived there, are affected by it. And we wanted to unearth the human stories going on behind the front doors, whether those doors were built 6 months ago, 70 years ago or 200 years ago.”
"Trumpington Voices is something different than just putting on a show. This is an idea that was generated by creative discussions at Menagerie theatre company but it is not our baby. It's a baby that has been nurtured by lots of different people, and that's how we want it to evolve. It's not going to be a conventional play, I think that's the key thing - it won't have fictional characters and a story with a beginning, middle and end. The real words of real people will be at the heart of the play."
— Patrick Morris, Director
Residents in Trumpington have been provided with the opportunity to be at the heart of the Trumpington public art project.
As well as the residents who agreed to be interviewed, 5 Community Participants played a vital role in the project as lead interviewers. They were trained in interview technique by professional Journalist, Vicky Anning. What is more, the play is to be performed by a community cast made up of people living in Trumpington, working alongside Emma Spearing, a professional actor, and under the leadership of project director, Patrick Morris.
Patrick Morris is the Associate Director of Menagerie Theatre Company. Menagerie is the leading independent new writing theatre company in the East of England. Based in Cambridge, the company has been creating theatre for over eighteen years and has a regional, national and international reputation for the development of first-class new writing for the stage. The company seeks out and supports talented writers in order to develop and produce innovative new theatre. As well as touring widely, Menagerie run workshops, writer development courses and produce the annual Hotbed New Writing Theatre Festival in Cambridge.
Clay Farm Centre
The Clay Farm Centre is a new shared-facility space overlooking Hobson Square, in the heart of one of the new developments in the south of Cambridge.
It hosts a community centre, library and café on the first two floors. There is also a medical centre on the third floor, and two floors of residential accommodation above that.
It will serve the residents of the new developments as well as those of Trumpington and the surrounding areas.