If you’ve been in some kind of slumber recently, or you wandered off into a darkened room and forgot how to get out, or if you’ve foregone the dubious pleasures of the dreaded facebook and twitter, then you may have missed the fact that Rima and I have been hatching an exciting plan…
With its drop-down stage, fancy awning and proscenium arch, Hedgespoken will serve as a stage wherever it goes. Whether it’s Tom and Rima telling tales and making mischief with handmade puppet shows, or it’s other actors, musicians or sword-swallowers using the stage-space as part of the Hedgespoken travelling show, our aim is to spread a little old magic by doing what we love. Hedgespoken has the wherewithal to act as a mini-theatre, a cabaret stage or acoustic music venue, anywhere. Perhaps your village green, or that disused urban space, wayside or park – Hedgespoken arrives, makes magic, plants seeds of imagination, and then leaves, in the tradition of wandering bards, travelling storytellers and itinerant puppet theatres and circuses that are so much part of our heritage.
Yes, this most recent creation of ours is a little different – it’s the culmination of several years of dreaming and sketching and talking and wondering that began the first week that Rima and I met in the Dartmoor woods (but that’s another story entirely, not for here!) This is going to be a vessel of extraordinary beauty, vagabond magic and wild imagination, and we are excited more than words can say to be embarking on the project.
But. We need your help.
We’re raising funds to make Hedgespoken, from rebuilding the back of this beautiful Bedford RL (which was what was under the tarp in my Birthday Wishes post at the beginning of last year), to getting all the right licenses and what-have-you to take this thing on the road, to having a covered canvas area for our audience and so on. This is a major project, and so we’ve launched a crowdfunder – you may have seen it already.
I’d love it if you were able to support us! We’ve got some very funky perks – Rima’s artwork (in singles or bundles or originals, however you like), my Smickelgrim masks, the first copies of our collaborative edition of SOMETIMES A WILD GOD (which I believe some of you will like, even some dedicated and signed ones for the collectors…) and clocks and calendars and all sorts more.
But even if you can’t donate your funds, you can help us by spreading the word (and there’s prizes for getting us the most contributions) and getting more people out there to hear about what we’re up to. We’re doing well – we’ve raised over £10,000 in just over a week (yes, that’s right – and we can’t quite believe it either) – but we’ve got a long way to go to reach our goal by the end of November.
Consider this. Have you enjoyed reading my work here? Well, I’ve enjoyed you enjoying it, too, and I love sharing it. There’s no fee and that’s the way I want it to be. So, here’s a way for you to help Rima and I both on the next step of our creative journey – if we can do this thing (and we will, that I know) it’s going to lead to extraordinary things. Coyopa, unchained. The Hermitage, on wheels. Great things beckon, many of them with masks and stilts and words from the wild. We are going to do this. Watch us.