Hidden Spire 2015: Before The Tempest


Hidden Spire 2015_Before the Tempest


“Before the Tempest” imagines what life was like on the island for Miranda and Prospero as a prequel to Shakespeare’s classic tale of love, magic and bad weather.

The play is the result of this year’s Hidden Spire, which brings together a team of professional artists to make a show from scratch alongside people who are homeless. They have been writing, devising, designing and building over 14 months to create what promises to be an extraordinary moment of live theatre with a striking set. A work of art in itself.

It’s about isolation and belonging, despair and forgiveness. It’s about wanting to fit in and being different. It’s about growing up. And it’s about birds.

There will be a Q & A after the performance on Thursday 17 Sept.



What is Hidden Spire?

A partnership between Arts at the Old Fire Station and Crisis Skylight Oxford, Hidden Spire brings professional artists and Crisis clients together to create a performance using music, dance, theatre, visual arts and more.

The two groups work together every step of the way: everything from set design, script-writing and front-of-house is done as a collaboration between the artists and Crisis clients. Hidden Spire isn’t just a production, it’s a process: it demonstrates the value and potential of having a public arts centre and resources for homeless people in the same building. Most importantly, it shows that excellent art and inclusive art can be the same thing.

Hidden Spire features as part of the Art In Crisis festival, a national programme of events and workshops aimed at foregrounding homelessness and the arts.


The arts are for everyone. Everyone has potential. Come and join Hidden Spire for “Before The Tempest” to see a truly unique and extraordinary moment of live theatre.


Hidden Spire was case study of EU project Civic Epistemologies, committed to examining how community groups of citizens engage with cultural heritage and participate in the generation and reuse of cultural heritage by using digital technologies. Homeless or vulnerably housed people tend not to identify as “citizens”, but the activities subject of Civic Epistemologies’ case study demonstrate the value of the work carried out by the Hidden Spire partners in transitioning the participants to citizenship, through gaining skills that enhance these people’s employability and contribution to society.

The Civic Epistemologies case study on “Hidden cultural heritage: inclusion, access, citizenship” was led by Coventry University.

Hidden Spire is supported by Highcroft PLC and Norbar.



For further info visit www.hiddenspire.co.uk


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