I was lucky enough to attend & perform at the launch of The Kingdom Project in the summer with a view to curating the main event when it officially starts in 2019.
Of the people, for the people and by the people..the launch event presented art/performance/music and film in unique local venues ranging from book shops to an historical local church.
I’m a great believer in community and cultures part in bringing people together especially in the digital age – spaces and places where we can share collective experiences and as such The Kingdom Project is a great example with even greater possibilities.
Don Letts – BBCR6 presenter – Kingdom curator – played at the Launch
It was always going to be fun to play at a launch event like Kingdom, to play adventurous gigs in locations that are shops by day, true pop up venues, in the middle of Hay on Wye. But I was really blown way by the non-stop interest and fully committed enthusiasm of local people. They came out in goodly numbers -our wonders to devour- and all the venues seemed to thrive socking it to a decent crowd who were giving their all to the great god of the groove. People appeared from our long departed London dance floors of the 90’s on the one hand, and on the other there were younger generations out for an unrivalled Saturday night ‘xperience. Can’t wait to help make it happen bigger, bolder, brassier and baadder next summer.
The heat is on!!!’
Max Reinhardt – BBCR3 presenter – Kingdom curator – played at the launch
I found the Kingdom Project a vital stimulating event full of great music & events performed by outstanding musicians, artists and DJs with something to say.
The range and mix of music was inspiring and covered so many genres and cultures including the UK, India, Africa Caribbean and the Middle East.
It was a great mix of roots music and contemporary dance floor crackers.
I really enjoyed ancient and classical instruments like the sitar and Uilleann pipe riding cutting edge rhythms.
The use of unusual spaces – even clothes shops – to host the eclectic program was inspired and added even more depth and texture to the Kingdom Project.
The artists programmed told great stories through their performances.
The Kingdom Project is set in Hay, which is renowned for the written word.
I am looking forward to introducing the instruments from African oral traditions to this literary town, which is twinned with Timbuktu, Mali’s ancient seat of learning to create a space for new musical stories.
Rita Ray – Afro beat specialist – Kingdom curator – played at the Launch
I have not previously been to Hay-on-Wye, but during the event the streets seemed to be filled with happy people going to and from the various venues – great atmosphere in the town!
Everyone seemed to be part of the project, sharing in the enthusiasm e.g in the Hay Deli (lovely shop in the centre) the owner was discussing who was going to be on and what a sitar was, with a leaflet in one hand and holding some kind of black pudding in the other….
It was great to be part of this project, I understand it was the first one- amazing as it appeared to be seamlessly put together!
This in turn made me relaxed and comfortable for my performances, the audiences were very interested and engaged in what I/we presented, and I came away feeling like I had had 2 really great shows.
All the people I spoke to after said they thoroughly enjoyed it and were having a great time. They seemed very pleased to have an event like this on with interesting ‘multi-culti’ acts, also as it is normally a fairly quiet town. Also, a lot of people had travelled from surrounding areas to attend the event.
Sheema Mukerjee – World-class musician – played at the Launch
When Ami from the Kingdom Project first told me we would be performing Coulrophobia (a clown show featuring swearing and disappointing nudity) in the local Catholic Church, I thought she was insane.
However, I can honestly say it was a genius idea.
Having performed in festivals and theatres all over the world, it turned out to be one of the highlights of my career.
The whole experience epitomised the wonderful originality of the Kingdom Project – using small, unusual local venues to bring exciting, challenging performance to the heart of the town. There was a palpable sense of excitement in the town during the build up of the event and even on its first tentative outing the Kingdom Project felt established.
The reaction from the audience for the whole event was fantastic and showed just how popular The Kingdom Project was with the local community and how ready the town was for this event.
Ami has spent many years delivering incredible arts & performance projects & festival events Worldwide and is now bringing all these experiences to bear on this innovative new project.
I for one have no doubt she will make it a resounding and long term success and hope to be involved in it as much as possible!
Dik Downey – Coulrophobia – performed at the launch
Paul Burgess & Louise Colbourne
We are extremely pleased to be involved in the Kingdom Project.
Our practice spans art and design, curation and education, and is perfectly suited to the anti-establishment and independent ethos of the project.
We look forward to bringing together a strong line up of established and emerging film-makes, artists, musicians and creatives to the inaugural Kingdom (of Hay) Project 2019.
The whole event is in the very capable hands of Ami Jade Cadillac, project director and programmer.
Paul Burgess & Louise Colbourne – Kingdom curators – attended the launch
It’s great to see the Kingdom Project working to celebrate the independent character of Hay-on-Wye.
The vision of the Project fits naturally with Hay Castle’s goal to create a community experience that is as unique as Hay, and one that fosters a sense of inclusiveness. This is an area that is rich in creative talent, and Hay Castle and the Kingdom Project can bring those resources together.
We really look forward to working with Ami & the Kingdom project in the years to come.
Nancy Lavin Albert – Managing Director – Hay Castle Trust
As tourism business owners in Hay on Wye, we are well placed to understand how much the town needs a project/event that involves and utilises community engagement, local people and local businesses whilst also attracting more visitors and their positive economic impact to the area at the same time.
The Kingdom project ticks all these boxes and more & we are in full support of its vibrant, well informed, highly skilled, local team…we can’t wait to get more involved ourselves!
Aubrey & Clare Fry – local business owners ‘Want to Canoe’ – attended the launch
The Kingdom Project exploded onto the Hay cultural landscape with their incredible launch event, and as members of the Chamber of Commerce we were hugely impressed with the scale and ambition of what we saw. We look forward to working with the Kingdom team to bring their next event to life.
Andrew Williams – local business owner ‘18 Rabbits’ & member of the Chamber of Commerce – attended the Launch
As a local resident, musician, and business owner I know that the Kingdom Project is the perfect fit for this place and the people in it.
I can see this is a model for a new view on arts projects that would be embraced across the county.
Stuart Fiddes – local business owner ‘Number Two Style’ & band ‘Inclines’ – attended the Launch