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London International Mime Festival

London International Mime Festival

From 11/01/2012 to 29/01/2012

The London International Mime Festival is Europe’s leading showcase for ground-breaking visual theatre, starting each year off with a dynamic programme of award-winning new circus, performance art, physical and object theatre.

Staged across six prestigious London venues, highlights of the 2012 festival include a rare visit to London by Wales’ internationally acclaimed NoFit State Circus in a co-production with France’s Tattoo Theatre; the UK premières of Camille Boitel’s astonishing visual cacophony, L’Immédiat, at the Barbican Theatre, Belgium’s acrobat-illusionist, Claudio Stellato at Southbank Centre, and Japanese butoh/street-dance icon, Hiroaki Umeda, at the Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House.


Southbank Centre

From Switzerland, Baccala Clowns (Camilla Pessi and Simone Fassari) bring a consummate mix of classic and modern clowning to the Purcell Room. Pss Pss was created last year with circus-theatre expert Louis Spagna and brings together numbers that have won awards at major circus festivals in China, France and Russia.


Autour Du Mime
Autour Du Mime

Created in 1997 by two former members of the Marcel Marceau Company, Sara Mangano and Pierre-Yves Massip, French troupe Autour Du Mime make their LIMF début at the Purcell Room. Based on a poem by Jacques Prévert (writer of the celebrated film, Les Enfants du Paradis), Tell Me The Truth is the headline in a mixed-bill programme, the story of lovers in a tomented relationship.  

Toron Blues' Tendre Suie is also inspired by a great literary work, Jean Paul Satre's Huis Clos. It's an enigmatic and gripping piece about two women whose purpose and identity remains suspended metaphorically - and indeed literally, performed by young French rope and aerial specialists, Clementine Lamouret and Elsa Caillat.
Milan-born and Belgium-based Claudio Stellato offers a mix of theatrical illusion and magic. L'Autre is the acrobat’s take on the alter-ego within, impulsive and oblivious to rules and reason.

From Spain, Kulunka Teatro bring a heart-warming mask-theatre production to LIMF about an elderly couple with Alzheimer's, the eponymous André and Dorine, who need to remember who they were so as not to forget who they are. André and Dorine has toured extensively in Spain and South America, and comes to London following performances in New York. It was an award winner at the Birmingham European Theatre Festival in 2011.

Leading the renaissance of contemporary circus in the UK, Wales' NoFit State Circus features at this year's festival with Mundo Paralelo, a show directed by Mladen Materic of French group Tattoo Theatre, whose productions have been invited to many of Europe’s most important festivals. As superb, acrobatic performers move from dollhouse streets to life-size rooftop platforms, interwoven stories unfold with swooping aerial moves and gravity defying skills. Mundo Paralelo brings circus and theatre together in a Picasso-blue-hued world of dreams where weird, wonderful and impossible feats are the norm.





French new circus artist Camille Boitel brings L'Immediat to the Barbican Theatre, a tumultuous visual metaphor for chaotic modern times. Amidst a stage crammed with machinery, objects and bric-a-brac of every kind, seven acrobat-adventurers, defy a tsunami of unstable forces with optimism, dark humour and breathtaking physical skills.  

Based in London Theatre Ad Infinitum is an award-winning international ensemble that is developing new and original theatre for a multi-cultural audience. Translunar Paradise, a moving story about love, loss and remembrance, is their latest work, told entirely through gesture and with a haunting, live accordion accompaniment.

Australian Fleur Elise Noble's highly-acclaimed and much travelled 2 Dimensional Life of Her arrives in London for the first time to play at the Barbican Pit. Set in an artist’s studio, this multi-media mix of drawing, animation, puppetry, projection and paper mesmerises and confounds as images reproduce themselves and go beyond the control of their creator. Unusual, original and just forty minutes long, 2 Dimensional Life of Her comes to LIMF 2012 direct from New York’s Under The Radar Festival

Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House

Tokyo-based multidisciplinary artist Hiroaki Umeda. Umeda is a performer, sound artist and lighting designer; his work is both sublime and violent. Combining street dance and butoh, Holistic Strata thrills with its hurricane of digital imagery, while in Haptic an exquisite visual and sonic experience is created as bright hues shift and morph with Umeda's fluid movements.

Britain’s celebrated Gandini Juggling troupe presents the full-length première of Smashed, a sensational mix of skill and theatricality inspired by the work of German dance-theatre legend, Pina Bausch. Nine brilliant jugglers, eighty apples and flying crockery combine in a series of nostalgic filmic scenes hinting at tense relationships, lost love and the quaintness of afternoon tea. 


Théâtre Tête De Pioche is a young Anglo-French company founded in 2009 by former director of the Mirepoix Puppetry Festival, Christine Saint-André. Fragments de Vie is a beautiful, miniature performance/installation for 40 people, a cabinet of curiosities conjuring sights and sounds of a vanished rural world.
Invisible Thread is Faulty Optic co-founder/artistic director Liz Walker’s new venture. Plucked inhabits the same Faulty Optic world of weird mechanical sets and strange animated figures, and uses live video-feed painting, object theatre, puppetry and animation to tell a scary fairy tale for adults. It’s haunting, funny and tragic.  

Soho Theatre

The Table is the new show from 2011 Edinburgh Fringe First award winners, Blind Summit, creators of puppetry for Anthony Minghella's Madam Butterfly and Simon McBurney’s
A Dog’s Heart at English National Opera, and their own sell-out shows, Low Life and 1984. The Table is a glorious tongue in cheek triptych featuring a ballet of disembodied heads, a story told entirely by pictures emerging from a briefcase, and a tiny Moses with a cardboard head full of lonely wisdom and pictures. Dark humour meets flat pack technology.


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