It’s a dark October evening sky over the Bristol docks. There’s the low buzz of a gathering crowd, ten thousand people moving towards the water, puzzled, laughing, wondrous. They look upwards at the huge, dark, sculptural shapes of three industrial cranes with curiosity and awe.
Behind the scenes, up in the control boxes, the lighting rigs, a team are waiting, poised, exhilarated and nervous. Months of work, of technological development, of artistic vision, are about to go live.
And then, suddenly, a gasp, as the cranes spring to life. Music. Light. A thousand, more, LED colours.
The cranes dance across the night sky, illuminating the old warehouses, the water and the faces of the crowd below, holding their breath, dazzled.
Mass Crane Dance is live. A project bringing to life a landscape in a new way, challenging us to see our surroundings differently. As well as the ten thousand below, four million people watch it online, mesmerised.
For creator and choreographer Laura Kriefman, it’s the culmination of journey of persuading other people to understand her vision, to see how things could be, to work with her to make it happen.
And yet, it so nearly didn’t happen. Not long before, Laura had given up her work in dance, unable to get funding or support. That’s what I talk to Laura about on The Creative Life Show this week.
As creators, it’s our job to make connections that other people haven’t seen. And yet that can be a lonely, frustrating process. Without understanding, we can’t get customers, cheerleaders or collaborators.
Laura and I talk about standing still, about the huge importance of having collaborators and supporters around you, and what to do when people simply don’t get what you’re trying to say.
We also talk about the essential chaos that comes with any kind of creation, and how to step into the unknown and take other people with you.
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