Tales from the

Eye of the Storm

We create

exceptional works of art and theatre exploring our declining relationship with Earth, and the liberation in reconnecting with it

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A sanctuary of creativity

Outrider Anthems emotionally engages communities through story and imagination, and seeks to offer

a sanctuary of truthful creativity

in the inevitable turbulence

of climate and global breakdown.

We are

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Jennifer Leach

Director

 Jennifer is a professional artist, playwright & filmmaker and has worked as lead artist at the RA, Courtauld Institute and other major London galleries. In 2011 she established her own company, Outrider Anthems, in order to realize the exploratory multimedia dramatic works that are the company’s hallmark.

www.jenniferleach.co.uk

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Andrea Carr

Associate

Andrea is an eco-scenographer, theatremaker and artist who has an impressive portfolio to her name, and who has represented the UK as an international designer. She is collaborating with Outrider Anthems to create two new pieces of theatre. Andrea and Jennifer met at a Climate Change conference in 2017.

www.andreacarr.co.uk

Alice McGuigan Project Manager

Since graduating from Queen Mary University of London with a degree in English and Drama (2013), Alice teaching Yoga internationally, as Alice May Yoga. She is also Director of ELF - Earth Living Festival.

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Ed Hendry

Designer

Ed started his journey with Outrider Anthems in 2016 through his Graphic Communication degree at Reading University. Initially making promotional materials for events, Ed has now created the Outrider Anthems logo, branding, website and identity.

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News

World Stage Design

Outrider Anthems is proud to announce the selection of Andrea's and Jennifer's work for the  prestigious World Stage Design (WSD) 2022 in Toronto.  The WSD is the first and only designer-based exhibition to showcase and celebrate performance design from individual designers. Andrea's designs for Stuck by theatre company Hoax were selected for individual display. Jennifer's films The Graveyard and Standing Tall were selected for inclusion in the Ecostage film lounge.

Standing Tall

On 1 May 2022, Outrider Anthems organised Standing Tall, a community intervention to honour and grieve the loss of a rich green lung in Reading, and the felling of 112 mature trees, to make way for a profit-orientated housing estate.

 

Moving Forward in Difficult Times

Outrider Anthems is growing ever more clearly into its mission statement, almost as if it knew what it was about before we did ourselves. The world as we know it is failing. The truth of this is hard to fathom, and we need a new way and a new language as we move forward. Love, compassion and courage will carry us into the storm.  In our current work, we are exploring how we might indeed provide 'a sanctuary of creativity' within turmoil. This sanctuary will be a sacred space.

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 The Piece


Filming for The Piece has begun, with a two-day shoot in Brixton, London. We aim to present this short film to invited audiences as a pilot, and look forward to hearing their responses and suggestions. We hope too that from this sharing we will find the full team we are needing to create the entire work. We will be seeking committed patrons and funders as well.

This is an exciting development, unfolding after the challenging time of lockdown, and we look forward to bringing to you this first sharing.

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Ecostage Pledge

Outrider Anthems takes the Ecostage Pledge, committing to sustainable and conscious theatremaking. This is an initiative for which Andrea has been a driving force.

You can find out more about it here:

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ClimateCultures

Jennifer and Andrea share their artistic response to the climate crisis in podcasts with the very engaging Julia Marques at ClimateCultures. ClimateCultures is a wonderfully rich initiative stimulating discussion between artists and creatives on the major issues of climate crisis.

 

Projects

Standing Tall

The Piece


Filming has begun for The PIece, with a 2-day film shoot in Brixton, London. Our intention is to edit this part of the work and to present it as a pilot to invited audiences whom we will invite to share responses and suggest developments,. We hope some may be inspired to come on board as part of the team needed to realise the full work.  We will also be seeking patrons and funders.

The Piece

 

Upcoming Events

 

Past Events

Festival of the Dark

2016 - 2017

How would it be if we turned off the lights? And sat - just for a while - in the dark? What might we discover? Rediscover, perhaps? Shall we try?

 This was the provocation behind the festival. We wanted to explore darkness, profoundly, embracing the still, quiet, fallow moments of life and the life cycle, and to probe what lies hidden in the dark that we reject and resist. Taking the ancient Celtic Wheel of the Year as our compass, we followed the rhythm of the year from winter solstice to winter solstice, with our 20+ events scheduled according to the significant dates in this calendar. The focus was on the fluxes of the seasons, the seesaw of day and night, and on the subtle recognition of winter and darkness as essential counterpoints to summer and the light.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Festival challenged, surprised and liberated, creating cultural flashlights to illuminate aspects of the ‘dark’ that are largely forgotten in our culture of electric light and fast living.

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Song of Crow

2007, 2015, 2016

An interdisciplinary work of theatre, delving into a challenging story of creation, and asking hard questions of where we, as a species, go from here.

'Still reeling from seeing Song of Crow last night: a creation myth brought to flesh blood & bone: light & dark, with moments of fear, anxiety, sadness and invoking a kind of miserableness in me only previously provoked by watching a Beckett play - my humanness today is all alive with a sense of storyfulness and craving to keep connected to the non-human world, particularly our crow brethren. Theatre like this is crucial, nay urgent for our times, and the life of our individual & collective cultural imaginations.'

'Visionary, prophetic, poetic'

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Where Then Shall We Start?

2014

A multi-layered theatre work depicting the unfolding of war as a dark folktale. Written by Jennifer Leach, music by Stephen Daltry, produced by Spark Productions and Outrider Anthems, the Queen’s House, Greenwich,

'A very beautiful, moving and poignant work, which communicated on the deepest level the universal futility of war.'

The River

2014, 2016

 

A life story written by Jennifer Leach for a supreme RADA-trained storyteller and very dear friend, Anne Latto. It tells of an old woman reflecting on her life as she turns to face the great horizon. Like a river she follows the flow of memories, a journey from source to sea. Good times, hard times, times to remember, times to forget...

'From start to finsh, from spring to ocean, this was an absorbing and rich telling.'

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Take Two!

2015

A commissioned play on the plight of the Palestinian people. Performed in Ascot and Reading.

 

“it was profoundly moving – the movements and visual backdrops and the soundtrack brought me right back to the painful memories of my time in the West Bank, and the desperate situation of the Palestinians today”.