With just one year to go (on 27 July 2012), 40 schools and groups in communities along the River Thames around Oxford, Reading, Henley and Windsor have to date signed up to become part of the spectacular Tree of Light project, giving the Thames Valley its own very particular chance to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games.
The project has also recruited the very best in artistic, scientific and environmental talent and know-how and plans are now under way to create one of the most spectacular – and memorable – community celebrations the area has ever seen.
The Tree of Light is a ground-breaking project which brings communities together through arts and environmental science. It’s one of just four ‘Community Celebrations’ to be selected by the Legacy Trust UK, an independent charity set up to create a lasting cultural and sporting legacy from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games across the UK. Five spectacular events will take place along the River Thames in 2012, with groups working with artists and scientists from now on towards the making of large-scale performances.
The centre piece of the project will be a giant sculpted Tree of Light created by renowned set design duo Block 9 (fresh from Glastonbury and Lovebox). It will be lit by low energy LED light and powered by sustainable energy generated by cyclists and rowers through the brilliant energy-saving pedal power team Electric Pedals. Leading Composer Orlando Gough and choreographer Charlie Morrissey will both be central to the performance, working with artistic director Stewart Collins. This will result in a performance by over 1500 people including massed singers and a wooden band.
The Tree of Light project is being run by The Thames Arts Consortium, which is made up of Oxford’s CIAO! Festival, Henley Festival, Oxford Inspires and Windsor Festival. The project is supported by Arts Council England Grants for the Arts funding and strongly supported by local authorities and bodies across the Thames region.
Dugald Mackie, Chair of Legacy Trust UK, says: “The Tree of Light will help spread the magic and excitement of the 2012 Games outside London and leave a lasting legacy across the South East of England. The Games aren’t just for two weeks, and they’re not just for sports fans. Through projects such as this, they will have an enduring impact on many people’s lives.”
For more information visit: http://www.thetreeoflight.org