Orpheus The Mariner

836-OrpheusSomething gigantic is coming to Scarborough...
An ancient story, retold with spectacular visuals set against the backdrop of Scarborough’s South Bay.

The story of Orpheus the Mariner

This magnificent event will take in Scarborough's South Bay across two evenings of the Coastival Weekend (Friday 14th & Saturday 15th February), with the audience following the epic journey of Orpheus through some of the town's most iconic locations. It features a community cast of over 750 performers from across the region, giant puppets, live music and lantern processions, and is set to be a stunning spectacle on a gigantic scale.

A groundbreaking tale of love, loss and adventure that will appeal to audiences of all ages.

Follow Orpheus on his quest to save his young bride Eurydice, battling against gigantic creatures from the deep, gathering immortal allies from the past, and journeying through the depths of Hades’ realm in an ageless love story with the people of Yorkshire at it’s core.

And if all that wasn’t enough to fire the imagination, the culmination of the production is an attempt at the world record for the largest puppet ever built, with the colossal Hades standing at 26 metres above the surface of the valley floor on the Saturday evening.

It’s going to be huge, and we’d love you to join us for this spectacular adventure.

Audience members are advised to gather along Foreshore Road, South Bay, Scarborough, and enjoy the attractions of the area prior to the beginning of each evening's performance.

Act One - Friday 14th February 2014

Follow the story of Orpheus as he and the lantern procession make their way along Foreshore Road towards the Harbour area of Scarborough, where they will be joined by a multitude of voices from local community choirs, and a host of giant puppets.


Highlights Of Friday Evening Will Include:

Set in the wonderful location of the Spa Complex Scarborough, and featuring live music with original compositions by local musicians. The meeting of the young couple and their celebrations are highlighted by original music composed and performed by local artists.


Featuring a multitude of lanterns, live song and hundreds of performers, the procession will follow Orpheus along Foreshore Road towards the Harbour. The performance will include a number of well known songs, and audiences are welcome to join in as we promenade along the sea front.

Audience members are advised to gather along Foreshore Road to watch the spectacle and follow the action to the Harbour area.


A multitude of voices representing dozens of choirs from across the region come together to create a moving and uplifting soundscape to accompany the action of the giants in the harbour. From 6.15pm onwards

Follow Orpheus on his adventure and bring the family along to enjoy the epic tale. Audience members are welcome to bring their own lanterns to the event with glow sticks or battery lights, but for the safety of others, please refrain from using naked flames.

Orpheus is in despair, and seeks an end to his sorrows, but his friends gather around him…

A host of giant puppets - from the land, the sea… and beneath the waves encircle the area, lit by the hundreds of assembled lanterns as we gather around the harbour area. Set to the sound of hundreds of voices from local choirs, and performances of traditional and original music composed for the event, Orpheus is set on a quest by his immortal allies as the evening is brought to a powerful end.

And the stage is set for tomorrow...

The best place to gather for each evening's performance is Foreshore Road, South Bay, Scarborough, from 5pm onwards. The performances begin at 5.30pm and run to approximately 7pm on both evenings. We ask you to please take consideration of the following points when following Orpheus on his journey: Audience members are encouraged to bring their own lanterns with them, powered with battery lights or glowsticks. PLEASE DO NOT BRING LANTERNS WITH NAKED FLAMES FOR THE SAFETY OF YOURSELVES AND OTHER AUDIENCE MEMBERS.

All dogs to be kept on leads. Please be aware that the performances will involve numbers of gigantic puppets and loud noises. Many dogs have an adverse reaction to giant puppets and / or loud noise, and we would ask you to take this in to consideration before bringing your dog with you.

Please be aware that this is a family event, and that alcohol is not to be consumed on the streets, in accordance with local bylaws.

Please dress appropriately for the weather conditions, and be aware of uneven surfaces when following the performance.

Wrap up and join the adventure! Orpheus needs you!

Getting Around Scarborough

* Orpheus the Mariner is a free event, taking place outdoors in February, so please remember to dress according to the weather conditions.
* We ask all visitors to take care, particularly in wet or slippery conditions, and to wear appropriate footwear and waterproof clothing for the event.
* Once in Scarborough town centre, you will see a number of our Luminaries - the volunteers at the heart of the production. They can be easily identified by their distinctive yellow coats - and their friendly smiles! They will be on the high street, and at various locations around town from mid-afternoon on both days.
* The Luminaries will be happy to direct you to the performance area as well as providing information about the event.


Act Two - Saturday 15th February 2014

The second act of the adventure begins on Foreshore Road, and moves southward towards Spa Bridge, and eventually into the valley area of the town. Audiences are again advised to gather along the Foreshore Road area and enjoy the attractions prior to the performance.

Highlights Of Saturday Evening Will Include:

The giant heroes gather together to lead Orpheus and the crowd in their quest towards the Underworld.

100 drummers line the route of the procession, providing an epic soundtrack to the titanic battle that awaits Orpheus and his allies. 5.45pm THE PERILS OF THE QUEST - FORESHORE ROAD The heroes are met in battle by a horde of gigantic creatures from the deep.

Orpheus is faced by the fearsome three-headed guardian of Hades' realm.

From 6.15pm
Orpheus is transformed into an illuminated spirit to travel through the underworld. A cacophony of performers from local colleges realise the ordeals of the Underworld.

Here, Orpheus meets Hades, Lord of the Underworld, towering high above the valley floor as part of the world record attempt for the largest puppet ever built.

Audience members are asked not to congregate in Valley Road until the performance enters the area. The performance travels the length of the road to Valley Bridge and back again to the Rotunda roundabout, and there will be good views of the action along the whole route.

Also look out for Faceless Theatre Company on Saturday 15th:

Where: Venue TBC please check our website: www.orpheusthemariner.co.uk for details

Faceless Company Drop in Lantern Making
11:00 – 1:00 and 2:00 – 4:00
This decorative lantern workshop will use a dry process to create beautiful handheld, decorative lanterns with ultra-safe LED lights. Participants can take their creations home with them and use them to join in with the promenade performance of Orpheus the Mariner on the evening of Saturday 15th.

Faceless Company Short Ships Interactive Walkabout Performance 15th February 2014
11:00am – 11:40am Town Centre 1:00pm – 1:40pm & 3:00pm – 3:40pm Foreshore Road
Ancient mariners lost in time and place Two galleons are lost on land with ineffectual tools of a blank map and a blind telescope. Fuelled by an atmospheric seafaring soundtrack, the ships use old fashioned charm and nautical naughtiness to seek the assistance of their audience as they strive to regain course.

Eye catching and impressive, our inept mariners are highly interactive and appeal to audiences of all ages.

It’s going to be a spectacular celebration of the Yorkshire Coast and its people, filled to the brim with enchanting visuals and live music, with a tragic love story at its heart. What better way to spend the Coastival weekend with friends and family?

Wrap up and join the adventure!


To make the whole event more inclusive, Animated Objects Theatre Company are arranging a number of community workshops where you can come along to get involved in the making process.

Places are free, but will need to be booked in advance to ensure that you have a place on the workshop session. Materials are provided, but we ask that if you cannot attend to please let us know as soon as possible so that someone else may have the place.

To book a place on any of the following workshop sessions, please email animatedobjects@mac.com or call our office on (01723) 378906

Please note that all children must be accompanied by an adult

When: Sunday 17th November 10.30am - 3.30pm

Where: Ocean Room, Scarborough Spa Complex

Public workshop session, where you can get involved in making part of the gigantic Hades puppet that will feature as part of a world record attempt for the largest puppet ever built. The eventual structure will stand at 26 metres tall above the valley floor, and will feature in the performance on the evening of Saturday 15th February.

And what’s more, every person involved in making part of the structure will also get to sign their work, so when he’s standing, you know that you’ve been part of something truly amazing. When: Saturday 23rd November 1.00pm Where: Central Library Scarborough

Luminaries Introductory Event

If you’ve ever been interested in being part of something as exciting as this, we’re looking for volunteers - our Luminaries. These are the people at the heart of the production, welcoming visitors to the event, and helping them get the most out of their weekend. If you’d like to find out more about what this involves, then pop along to Scarborough Library concert room at 1.00p.m. on Saturday 23rd November. We’d love to have you on board!

When: Saturday 18th January 10.00am - 12.00pm and 1.00pm - 3.00pm

Where: The Spa, Bridlington

Lantern Making workshops

Have a go at making your own lantern to bring along to the event with your children. Materials for the lantern will be supplied - all you need to do is get a glow stick to pop inside!

To book a place on either the morning or afternoon session, please email animatedobjects@mac.com

Please note that all children must be accompanied by an adult

When: Saturday 18th January 10.30am - 3.00pm

Where: Ocean Room, Scarborough Spa Complex

Hades - The Big Build!

If you like the idea of getting up close and personal with one of the biggest puppets that’s ever been made, we’re going to assemble the colossal Hades in the Ocean Room on January 18th. It’s your chance to get a really close look at just what goes in to making something of this size, and to talk to the designers of the piece.

And it’s not just about having a look - you can get involved directly by helping us to string the puppet framework and learn how this magnificent creature will come to life in Orpheus the Mariner.

When: Saturday 25th January 11.00 - 1.00 and 2.00 - 4.00

Where: Woodend Creative Space

Alpine Horn Making with Faceless Theatre Company, Wakefield

The second night of Orpheus the Mariner needs some really big sounds, so we’ve organised a musical instrument making workshop with the wonderful Faceless Theatre Company from Wakefield, where we’ll be making a number of gigantic instruments to feature in the performance. To book a place on either the morning or afternoon session, please email animatedobjects@mac.com

When: Saturday 25th January 10.00 - 12.00 and 1.00 - 3.00

Where: Whitby Leisure Centre

When: Saturday 1st February 10.00 - 12.00 and 1.00 - 3.00

Where: Helmsley Arts Centre

When: Saturday 8th February 10.00 - 12.00

Where: Evron Centre

Filey Lantern Making

Have a go at making your own lantern to bring along to the event with your children. Materials for the lantern will be supplied - all you need to do is get a glow stick to pop inside!

To book a place on either the morning or afternoon session at one of these venues, please email animatedobjects@mac.com

Please note that all children must be accompanied by an adult

Orpheus in the Community Exhibition and Information Stand

Ground Floor, Spa Complex, Scarborough

Throughout the Coastival Weekend, we will be running an exhibition of some of the work carried out in the community as part of the Orpheus the Mariner project. Representing people of all ages from across the region, you’ll find workshop images, personal stories and examples of some of the fantastic community work that has gone into making this extraordinary production.

We’ll also have people on hand on Saturday to give you information about the coming performance, and answer any questions you may have.

Souvenir programmes will also be on sale, featuring images of the production and some of the stories of those involved in bringing it all together.


Free Newsletter