It's the end of the Giffords Circus season and a time of goodbyes. You have lived with the circus village on tour since the spring and suddenly it's autumn. The ground is wet, the evenings are dark. The circus lights seem brighter in the dark and the warm bright intensity of the tents contrasts with the mud and brown leaves outside.
I have been overwhelmed by all the incredibly kind people who have written since the last newsletter. There are too many emails, cards and letters to reply individually but thank you so much for each and every message.
Talk about riding the crest of a wave! Two months has passed since we took Any Port in a Storm on the road. And it has been magical. The opening at our HQ Fennells Farm was a whirlwind as it is every year - bedding the new in (so to speak!), reacquainting the old, and pushing the 2017 Giffords Circus family onto the road for the summer.
This year will be a masterpiece! Cal McCrystal, Nell and Toti are putting their heads together to work wonders with artistes from around the world. We are blessed to draw talent from Cuba, Brazil, Ukraine, Slovakia, Germany
Last week a surge of talent descended on Fennells Farm for the production meeting, a key day for the show's creation. It is an extraordinary day of collaboration. Old working relationships being rekindled and new ones being formed. We all talk, ponder, laugh, question, observe, listen, all working to the same goal, a vision of Any Port in a Storm. The buzz is palpable
There is always a shift in energy when the paint brushes come out. The new Art Department is coming on leaps and bounds as we fast forward into spring. It is a glorious time of the year with longer days, temperatures in double digits and colour returning to the landscape. And where better than at Fennells Farm.
Why don’t you let your imagination run wild and write a short story? Create a legend from the deep, or a tale of a heroine lost at sea and enter our creative writing competition based on the theme ‘Any Port in a Storm’.
We have our first round of production meetings next week which we are all very excited about. It is when the creative juices really start to flow, the meat is added to the bones and thoughts tumble onto paper.
It happens every year. The clocks go back and the nights draw in. But it still comes as a shock to the system. And being typically British, it becomes a much loved topic of conversation. The US Election? Bah. Brexit? Tosh. Nothing creates a furrowed brow as much as the annual nose dive into the long dark evenings.
We've done London, all three weeks, and it was a blast! We welcomed families, friends, actors, actresses, models, students, comedians, school groups, photographers, disadvantaged youngsters and proud parents.
Our 2016 tour, The Painted Wagon opened at home, Fennells Farm on Friday 13th May 2016. Since then we have performed 72 shows, our burgundy wagons, and troupe have rolled through Sudeley Castle, Daylesford Organic Farm Park, Blenheim Palace and Oxford University Parks and have now arrived in the big city.