As excitement builds towards the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, a thrilling ambush by some of the world's most gifted performers has arrived in the capital.
From Brooklyn, New York, fresh from the fiercest training regime anywhere in professional dance, come the STREB EXTREME ACTION dancers. They are in London to amaze us with a performance choreographed by their founder Elizabeth Streb, entitled Surprises: Streb.
Suddenly appearing at landmark locations around the city, those catching this one-off spectacle will witness the human body being pushed to its ultimate limits through daredevil feats of extreme athleticism.
Surprises: Streb is one of several high profile events being presented by the Mayor of London and London 2012 Festival as part of an unprecedented cultural festival taking place in every corner of the capital this summer to celebrate the Games.
Staged by LIFT, the London International Festival Of Theatre, Surprises: Streb is an event on a scale never before seen in this country, thrilling spectators not only locally but across the planet, as the gaze of the world’s media intensifies its focus on the city as it hosts the 2012 Games.
Surprises: Streb is designed as a sudden explosion of human energy and art that appears out of the blue: an extraordinary surprise for the person in the street, a thrilling and inspirational assault on the senses for in this most vibrant of capital cities.
Surprises: Streb has been commissioned by the Mayor of London and the London 2012 Festival, with funding from Arts Council England, the Department of Culture, Media and Sport and the National Lottery through the Olympic Lottery Distributor.
Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, said: I am thrilled that we've been able to bring Elizabeth Streb's incredible dancers to the capital. In an unprecedented summer of supreme sporting competition and world-class cultural events, the awe inspiring jeopardy they will bring to our landmark buildings promises to be one of the most mind-blowing highlights of the year.'
Ruth Mackenzie, Director, London 2012 Festival, said: "Elizabeth Streb's Surprises: Streb is a wonderful and inspiring element of the 12-week UK-wide festival celebrating the culmination of the Cultural Olympiad. We’re in the middle of a truly amazing series of events."
Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, said: 'Surprises: Streb promises to be an absolutely breathtaking spectacle and a fantastic part of our Olympics cultural programme for the London 2012 Festival. It will also promote London’s iconic landmarks to the world by showing them off in a completely new light.'
Moira Sinclair, Executive Director London, Arts Council England, said: 'London will host a global celebration of all that is best in culture and sport this summer. We wanted to surprise people, to encourage them to look afresh at this great city, to experience something they wouldn’t usually get the chance to see. Surprises: Streb does just that and we can’t wait to hear what Londoners will make of this fabulous spectacle.'
Rt Hon Dame Janet Paraskeva, Chair of the Olympic Lottery Distributor said: 'The Olympic Lottery Distributor is pleased to be supporting Streb, with National Lottery money bringing such exciting projects to life as part of the London 2012 Festival and Mayor of London Presents programme.
Mark Ball, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of LIFT, commented: 'Our free, secret performances have formed some of London’s biggest 'wow' moments recently, popping-up without warning, taking over and transforming some of London's most iconic landmarks during 2011 and 2012 – remember the fantastic musical balloons of the Sky Orchestra - Surprises: Streb is going to be no exception.'
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Notes to editors
MAYOR OF LONDON PRESENTS
The Mayor of London is supporting a huge programme of free events and cultural activities to add to the excitement of 2012. Working with outstanding international artists and world-class cultural organisations this unprecedented Mayor of London Presents programme is taking place in every corner of the capital to add to and complement the London 2012 Festival. It includes Secrets: Hidden London, with artists and performers transforming hidden and lesser known locations; Showtime, the largest outdoor arts festival ever seen in the capital, with dozens of electrifying artists from the UK and abroad coming to every borough, in high streets, parks and town centres; BT London Live, bringing live action from the Games, as well as sporting activities and entertainment to Hyde Park, Victoria Park and Trafalgar Square; and Surprises bringing pop-up performances and once in a lifetime experiences, including Surprises: Streb - to locations familiar and unusual, above your heads and atop landmark buildings. To be the first to know what's happening in this Summer Like No Other, sign up or follow us at www.molpresents.com / www.facebook.com/mayoroflondonpresents / www.twitter.com/molpresents. For more information contact Ben McKnight in the Mayor's Press Office: firstname.lastname@example.org / 020 7983 4070.
LONDON 2012 FESTIVAL
The London 2012 Cultural Olympiad is the largest cultural celebration in the history of the modern Olympic and Paralympic Movements. Spread over four years, it is designed to give everyone in the UK a chance to be part of London 2012 and inspire creativity across all forms of culture, especially among young people. The culmination of the Cultural Olympiad is the London 2012 Festival, the spectacular 12-week nationwide celebration bringing together leading artists from across the world with the very best from the UK, from Midsummer's Day on 21 June and running until the final day of the Paralympic Games on 9 September 2012.The London 2012 Festival =celebrates the huge range, quality and accessibility of the UK’s world-class culture including dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, fashion, film and digital innovation, giving the opportunity for people across the UK to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Principal funders of the Cultural Olympiad and London 2012 Festival are Arts Council England, Legacy Trust UK and the Olympic Lottery Distributor. BP and BT are Premier Partners of the Cultural Olympiad and the London 2012 Festival. For more details on the programme, to download the London 2012 Festival official guide and to sign up for information visit www.london2012.com/festival.
LIFT: THE LONDON INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL OF THEATRE
Above all, LIFT is proud to be in and of London. No other organisation or festival brings theatre to so many diverse, quirky and accessible places and spaces across our city. There’s a sense of discovery in all LIFT’s work and it’s our intention to give members of the public the chance to see the world through the eyes of others, both artists and ordinary people, and to experience art on their own terms. Every performance or event we stage we intend to be a personal experience that will mean something unique and real to each and every individual lucky enough to witness it. Surprises: Streb is no exception.
ARTS COUNCIL ENGLAND
Arts Council England is proud to work in partnership with London 2012, and is a Principal Funder of the Cultural Olympiad and London 2012 Festival.
The Arts Council champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people’s lives. It supports a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections. Great art and culture inspires us, brings us together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. In short, it makes life better. Between 2011 and 2015, it will invest £1.4 billion of public money from government and an estimated £1 billion from the National Lottery to help create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country.
THE OLYMPIC LOTTERY DISTRIBUTOR
The Olympic Lottery Distributor is investing National Lottery money to fund the London 2012 Games. It is providing £16.6 million to support the Cultural Olympiad and is a principal funder of River of Music. It is also providing funding of £3.42 million to fund the network of Big Screens across the UK and will be providing up to £1.8 billion for the infrastructure of the Olympic Park and other Olympic facilities across the UK. More information about the Olympic Lottery Distributor can be found at www.olympiclotterydistributor.org.uk
GLA MEDIA ENQUIRIES: Press information is available from 020 7983 4070 email email@example.com
PUBLIC/NON-MEDIA ENQUIRIES: Call the Public Liaison Unit at the Greater London Authority on 020 7983 4100
DUTY PRESS OFFICER: For out-of-hours media enquiries, please call 020 7983 4000