Royal Docks welcome world-class cultural commissions this October


Royal Docks welcome world-class cultural commissions this October

The Royal Docks Team is delighted to announce it has commissioned two world-renowned production teams to produce new immersive experiences for the public in October as part of its Autumn cultural programme Royal Docks Originals, following the success of its summer outdoor arts programme.

Situated in the heart of East London, the Royal Docks is offering an exciting schedule of cultural activities for Londoners of all ages. Royal Docks Originals is part of the Royal Docks Cultural Placemaking Strategy, an ambitious vision to make the Royal Docks ‘the cultural engine’ of London - a major new cultural quarter. It will nurture and support the existing creative communities and provide new employment opportunities in the cultural sector, delivering on its commitment to bring world-class culture to the doorstep of Londoners.

Bompas and Parr to launch the first ever flavour rainbow

On 15 October Bompas & Parr, a leading experience design and creative studio originally known for its giant jelly sculptures, will unveil its commission Royal Docks Rainbows - featuring the world’s first Flavour Rainbow, inspired by the meteorological phenomenon and the history of the Royal Docks.

The two-part installation will introduce Londoners to the world’s first Flavour Rainbow beneath Silvertown Way. Guests will be invited to experience flavours of the rainbow inspired by Royal Dock’s commercial history and the imagination of its residents, such as spices from across the world, coffee, flour and sugar. The installation uses white light refracted through falling moisture that appears multicoloured in the eyes of its viewer, as part of a multisensory experience.

The second half of the commission, will feature a Giant Rainbow built over the Royal Docks, and made visible when the sun shines inspiring its audience to reflect on the pandemic. The installation, like rainbows seen many times before, will be synonymous with hope, prosperity and a sense of community.

Sam Bompas, Co-Founder of Bompas & Parr studio said: "With the Royal Docks once London’s gateway to world trade, the celebration of rainbows that have a flavour has important local resonance. Many of the foods, new tastes and scents coming into London from across the world passed through this area in terms of import, warehousing and manufacturing. The Royal Docks is the obvious place to showcase the world's first Flavour Rainbow as we share its history and celebrate its vibrant future as the new cultural engine of London. It’s a joy to be able to create a sense of wonder particularly within the grandeur of Europe’s very first flyover.”

We want to draw on the rich history of Newham, its current realities and vibrancy and the community's hopeful dreams for the future of the docks to create an exciting evening to remember.

Matthew Dunster, co-director, ARRIVAL

Renowned West End Director to create community led immersive theatre production

This October will also see the launch of a brand new promenade production set in the Royal Docks iconic landscape called ARRIVAL. Led by film and theatre director, Matthew Dunster who is currently directing the West End production ‘2.22 - A Ghost Story’ with Lily Allen, ARRIVAL is also co-Directed by Jon Bausor, an International stage and costume designer known for designing the opening ceremony of the 2012 Paralympic Games.

Produced by imPOSSIBLE and Dunster/Bausor, ARRIVAL invites the audience on an exciting storytelling journey of the docks filled with live performance, food, film, beatboxing, music and dance. The docks have historically been a place of arrival – of people, stories, songs and products and ARRIVAL will showcase the people, place, past, present and future of this extraordinary area of London.

The public will be able to experience this live immersive theatrical performance set in the streets, bridges, paths, greens and around the stunning waterscape of the area on Thursday 21, Friday 22 and Saturday 23 October.

Matthew Dunster, co-director, ARRIVAL, said: "We are thrilled to have been given the opportunity to make an ambitious event with, and for the local community this autumn. We're calling it ARRIVAL. The docks are historically a place where things arrive – boats, people, timber, cloth, oranges, elephants – you name it, it’s been through the docks and helped to make London the city it is. We want to draw on the rich history of Newham, its current realities and vibrancy and the community's hopeful dreams for the future of the docks to create an exciting evening to remember. We’re raring to get started and invite anyone local to get in touch with us to hear more about being involved.”

Mayor of Newham and Co-chair of the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone Board, Rokhsana Fiaz, said:

“It’s really exciting to see our diverse culture drawn from all around the world and the home grown talents of Newham people combining to make the Royal Docks the centre of the creative culture and the new enterprises that will drive our future prosperity.”

Once the beating heart of the first industrial revolution, the Royal Docks is currently being regenerated to again rise as a driving force behind the fourth industrial revolution. Where once it was the nation’s gateway to the world, today it is London’s only Enterprise Zone, providing tax breaks and other incentives to drive the UK’s economy, helping to attract substantial foreign investment into the country.

The Royal Docks will also soon be home to City Hall, the beating political heart of the Capital. Mayor Sadiq Khan announced plans to move from the GLA’s current home in Southwark last year to The Crystal, a move that is expected to be completed in the coming months.

To find out more information about Royal Docks Originals including Royal Dock Rainbows - featuring the World's First Ever Flavour Rainbow and ARRIVAL commissions you can visit: