Darkness is dispersed. Light takes over. The sounds of summer in winter’s depths. Ancient tales, woven together produce an enchanting evening. A band of motley clothed players. Mediaeval rhymes spun into musical cloth. Scarcely visible musicians. A hive of activity.
All this with Wassailing and Cutty Wren hunting and, of course, the unexpected. All to celebrate the coming of the Light and Candlemas. This is Midwinter Dreaming. A play written, performed and produced by a group drawn from the Bramerton group of 11 villages with significant contribution from the international writer and story-teller, Hugh Lupton.
The audience is asked to arrive at 6.30pm to drink Wassail to the performance, refresh and warm themselves before joining a Lantern led procession to the church, darkened for the mysteries to unfold.
There are three performances of Midwinter Dreaming. Charlotte Arculus and Mary Lovett add innovation, drama and song transforming the play into an atmospheric experience. Candlemas is a Festival of Light. The Light of the World has arrived and Spring is around the corner as the Sun brings much needed warmth.
For the Millennium, many of Bergh Apton’s inhabitants wrote, produced and acted in an Historical Pageant. The village’s history from “pre-history” to the present day, via Boadicea, the coming of Christianity, the Peasants Revolt, William Cobbett to the two World Wars and a glance into the future, was all drawn and enacted for the world to see.
In 2011, commissioned by BACAT, Hugh Lupton, wrote and performed in a Mystery Play with cast from the village. In 2014, emboldened by success, Hugh created a Mystery Play Cycle and under David Farmer’s direction, some seventy inhabitants of our 11 villages, joined Hugh performing in the church and nearby woodland.
Midwinter Dreaming has created further challenges. A small group interested in writing, put their heads together with Hugh, to produce this new play. Some thirty performers, drawn from the same group of villages will take part; actors, singers, musicians and ‘rude mechanicals’.
This is a Bergh Apton Community Arts Production. BACAT formed in 1997, organised the famous Bergh Apton Sculpture Trails and has turned to dramatic arts. This production would not have been possible without BACAT’s support.
This will be a special experience. It will carry everyone from deepest, darkest, coldest winter towards the delights of spring and summer, picking up where the Christmas Story might have gone and taking us all into the Light.