Welcome to the 34th Rhubarb Festival.
Emerging from the projects this year is the concept of ritual: everyday rituals, performance as ritual, social rituals, rituals of activism, healing, sex, and rites of passage.
Tonight you are part of a choose-your-own-adventure ritual. Each step, from rifling through this programme, to watching, listening, participating, applauding, chatting, picking which show to see next, moving between spaces, visiting the bar and dancing at the party afterwards, is part of this ritualistic Rhubarb experience.
We long for connection, closure and transcendence. We want to understand what the fuck is going on. We want to go through something mind bending and transformative with others. These desires continue to draw us to the ritual of performance.
In some situations ritual might be associated with predictability. At Rhubarb, ritual is not predictable; it is unexpected and transgressive. Artists come to Rhubarb with ideas they don’t feel they can try anywhere else, they come with ideas that scare the shit out of them, with stories that are personal and necessary to tell; with approaches that take them and you, their audience, in new directions.
One thing is certain with Rhubarb—you never know what will happen next.
Thank you for taking part.