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New Carnival Company remains open for business, but is rescheduling some of its events and activities.

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The Covid 19 Virus is a worrying time for us all and will likely have a significant effect on the people and communities we work with. We want to reassure everyone that whatever the challenges and changes for our regular programme, our primary concern is for everyone’s health and wellbeing. That includes making sure that everyone is aware of our plans for the next few months and can look forward to sharing great creative activities, whether on the streets and in our open spaces or in schools and community venues, once the immediate emergency has passed.

1.From March we will be suspending our existing participatory workshop programme, which includes Adult Community Learning classes, schools outreach and artist training sessions.

2. Our core staff will be working from home, so usual services from the 

Coaching House, for instance buying materials for projects, will also be affected.

3. All Along the Riverbank, scheduled to take place on Saturday 2 May, will be cancelled. In its place we are planning to produce a similar outdoor countryside festival linked to the Biosphere for early October.

4. Our Mardi Gras Parade, ‘the Story of Carnival’ will be postponed - to Saturday 26 June 2021. Schools and organisations that are already working towards this theme will retain their sections and carry forward costume designs for next year. NCC will re-launch the Story of Carnival in autumn 2020 for existing and new groups and will continue to offer full artistic support and guidance towards that, as is the norm.

5. Plans for an outdoor illuminated event at Brading Roman Villa - ‘Dark Nights’- during November remain unchanged at this stage. 

To keep spirits up and the creativity buzzing throughout this testing time, the New Carnival Company is working with other partners to plan for a one-off ‘pop-up style’ celebratory parade for Saturday June 27th 2020 (or as soon thereafter, as restrictions on large scale gatherings are lifted). This will have an eco-carnival theme. 

This parade will offer all our regular participants, and of course many new ones, the opportunity to create costumes at home or at school, using cardboard and other recycled and re-purposed materials. This project will be supported by online workshops and tutorials in the much loved ‘Blue Peter’ style, developed by our artists and using easy transferable techniques for costume making, junk music and simple dance routines’ 

Throughout the immediate period all at NCC will continue to work remotely, taking advantage of connected technology to collaborate with our team, our artists, our funders and the carnival sector nationally and internationally. We will be refocussing our workload to make sure that when the time is right we can push the big green button and through our creative work and projects bring some happiness and joy back to the Island, the UK and beyond. 

For more information on the above, please contact Chris Slann, executive director at the New Carnival Company on 01983 716095 or chris@thenewcarnivalcompany.com

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