Blackpool's Annual Festival
of Circus & Performance

13-20 Feb 2016

Showzam! The Perfect Recipe For Entertainment

Mix a pinch of ghoulish horror, add a little freak show and stir in some illusion to create a Showzam! spectacular at Blackpool’s festival celebrating Circus, Magic and New Variety.

Showzam! organised by Marketing Blackpool with Professor Vanessa Toulmin from the University of Sheffield, returns for its sixth outing from February 15th - 24th.

And jaw-dropping artistes Spymonkey are back – this year with their chilling version of the midnight Spookshow – a popular entertainment mash-up from 1930-1950s America.

More than 150 performers will tread the boards, walk the streets and quite simply dazzle audiences during the 10-day festival and the team behind Spookshow are promising to leave audiences aghast with their hauntings, hysteria and horror!

Co-Artistic Director Petra Massey says she can’t wait to get to Blackpool.

She said: “There is always a very warm feeling to be part of Showzam! and each festival is a special experience. It’s also fantastic for artists to be encouraged and supported to create new work.

“Spymonkey are very lucky this year to present the first stages of a brand new Spookshow. It's a work in progress so each show will be slightly different as the piece evolves over the run.

“The audience will be a big part of the show’s development as we guage the reaction with each performance and feedback will be important. It’s always a very exciting time creating a show from scratch and simply put, in Spymonkey land, anything can happen. There will be lots of screams, lots of laughter and an air of supreme insanity.”

This is Spymonkey’s third year at Showzam! and they quite simply love performing in Blackpool.

Petra added: “There is no other town quite like it especially for those in the entertainment and comedy business. It’s a town steeped in history.

“This year we have the honour of performing Spookshow in the Winter Gardens and also cabaret in The Blackpool Tower Ballroom.

“When I arrived inside The Tower Ballroom for the first time and saw folk dancing the fox trot and drinking tea I thought I had died and gone to heaven. Then to top it, the stage opened and a huge organ slowly appeared. I am still recovering from the experience. It’s a trip back in time and each time I visit I am mesmerised.”

Spymonkey will perform Spookshow in the Winter Gardens Baronial Hall and Renaissance Suite from Friday 15th to Tuesday 19th February. The show is suitable for people aged 14+.

Other events at Showzam! include the Wookey Hole Youth Circus, The Invisible Circus – with their specially commissioned piece, The Last Waltz, the increasingly popular Carnival Ball, Dreamtime with Romany – Diva of Magic, a massive variety of street performers including Musical Ruth and The Grannies, and Mr Albert’s Big Finish.

There will also be a wide selection of tours and talks including Pleasure Beach Resort Costume Tours; Palaces of Delight, presented by Professor Vanessa Toulmin, exploring the beauty and wealth of Matcham architecture in Blackpool as well as the Winter Gardens and The Blackpool Tower & Circus Heritage Tour.


Blackpool's annual festival of Circus and Outdoor Street Arts

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LEFTCOAST Arts Council England