Celebrating its 25th anniversary, Greenwich+Docklands International Festival (GDIF), London’s leading festival of outdoor theatre and performing arts, today announces its forthcoming programme, running from 28 August – 12 September 2020 in locations across Royal Greenwich and East London. Following months of often challenging behind the scenes creative and production work to adapt the programme and prioritise the safety of artists and audiences, the Festival offers events with capacities from 50 up to 250, including durational installations, site-responsive theatre and dance and a touring programme of street arts, delivered on people’s doorsteps.
GDIF is set to be the UK’s first full festival to take place since lockdown began in March and much of the programme has been curated in response to recent events. Highlights include Luke Jerram’s new installation In Memoriam created as a temporary memorial to those we have lost during the Covid-19 pandemic and also in tribute to NHS staff and key workers; 846 Live, a co-production with Theatre Royal Stratford East and the Royal Docks Team in response to the murder of George Floyd; The Weavers of Woolwich, an epic new prose/poem from Booker Prize-winning novelist Bernardine Evaristo; and the world première of Requardt and Rosenberg’s sci fi dance theatre epic Future Cargo, in which a truck with a mystery cargo from a distant planet arrives revealing everything needed to start over, in a production exploring globalisation and new beginnings.
GDIF’s Artistic Director, Bradley Hemmings said today, “This year’s Festival takes place in unprecedented times. The recent hard months have shown in sharp relief our need for equality and community, whilst reminding us of the resilience that comes from looking after each other.
“As a free outdoor festival, GDIF has always tried to play an active role in local civic life, and as we start to reimagine the future, this 25th-anniversary Festival has been designed with artists, local partners and participants to offer an inclusive moment for reflection, whilst hopefully providing something we all desperately need – a time to celebrate and smile together again.
“The safety and wellbeing of our artists and audiences is our number one priority and we have worked hard to put in place extensive measures to ensure a safe festival for everyone.”
This year, GDIF forms part of the wider Royal Greenwich – It’s Time celebration, a summer series of leisure, learning, culture and events in Royal Greenwich which aims to bring communities together again and kick-start the local economy after a prolonged period in lockdown.
Leader of the Royal Borough of Greenwich Cllr Danny Thorpe said: “We couldn’t be more excited for the return of GDIF in Royal Greenwich. After months in lockdown, events and festivals like GDIF have a hugely important role in bringing our communities together again and helping to rebuild our local economy. GDIF has curated a superb line-up in response to recent events, promoting equality and inclusion, and uniting residents from across the borough in what is set to be a cultural extravaganza.
Opening up amazing experiences to all our residents and bringing communities together was what motivated the Council to help establish the festival 25 years ago, and, this year, it will be particularly welcomed by many of our residents.”
All events will have free, allocated access for local residents, with further free and paid ticketing arrangements to help manage more limited event capacities for this year and ensure that everyone who attends can have an enjoyable and safe experience. Tickets will be available for general booking from Thursday 6 August 2020 at 12 noon.
Full information and performance times are detailed below, and also at: