Taking Romeo & Juliet to the streets of Blackfriars

Barratt London sponsors London-based hip-hop and contemporary dance group, Avant Garde, to take Romeo & Juliet to the streets of Blackfriars

The Barratt London development team currently working on a proposal to regenerate the redundant office buildings at the southern end of Blackfriars Road have sponsored the local dance group's latest production which runs from 20-25 August 2014.  

Avant Garde Dance’s adaptation of Romeo and Juliet is an immersive hip hop theatre piece that moves across a number of indoor and outdoor locations. The show has dance and musicality at its heart, but is rooted as a theatre production based on Shakespeare’s tragic love story. Tony Adigun’s groundbreaking choreography and direction combines with Shakespeare’s text, adapted by spoken word artist and theatre maker Maxwell Golden, to create a stunning production that immerses the audience in a modern take of the play - literally using the cityscape as the stage.

The show began in The Crown Public House and then moved to a number of contrasting locations in Blackfriars. Audience members were issued with wireless headphones, allowing them to move with the promenade adventure, totally immersed in the piece and at the same time isolated from the world around them. Performers use in-ear monitoring and headset microphones. This enables the culturally and artistically diverse production to be totally mobile.

The Blackfriars Road development would be made up of 384 apartments, two major new public spaces, 35,000 sq ft of flexible workspaces that could accommodate up to 24 small businesses and 16,500 sq ft of retail space for shops, cafes and restaurants. The design of each of the buildings is intended to create a traditional street condition with active uses and entrances, bringing life to the street fronts at the southern end of Blackfriars Road.