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Wigan is getting Hot On The Streets
Saturday 21st May, 2005

Wigan is getting Hot On The Streets
The Daughters of Isis

Summer is officially here and Wigan is getting ready for a spectacular explosion of street fun.

Street performers from across the arts spectrum will be performing at the Hot On The Streets festival which takes place at 12pm to 2pm from Wednesday 1st June to Friday 3rd June, at Market Place in the heart of Wigan town centre. Dancers, comedians, circus acts and musicians from both the professional circuit and the local community will collaborate in what promises to be a fun-packed day of laughter, thrills, spills and fantasy.

The festival organised by Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust (WLCT), is completely free to the public and aims to bring back the art of street entertainment to the town centre by combining visual and musical arts designed to please the ear and cheer the heart. Stars of the show could be the Black Eagles an amazing troupe of tumbling acrobats from Tanzania; Jason Maverick the award winning mesmerising mime act or the magnificent Splott Brothers and their infamous ‘cocktail of comedy’. This year’s outdoor extravaganza is again being compered by Gary Gifford from Bread and Butter Theatre Company who revels in his role as the link between the artist and their audience.

WLCT’s Community Regeneration Manager Chris Wyatt, who organises the festival, thinks this year’s event is the most exciting street festival to be witnessed in Wigan.

“The quality of performers on show this year is outstanding. Our main aim is to make the festival fun for people of all ages and tastes. Our audiences return year after year and because it is free and ‘on the street’ the performances are accessible to just about anyone,” enthuses Chris. “The other great thing about the festival is that it gives community based artists the opportunity to shine alongside their professional counterparts. They get just as much out of it as the audience and the warmth between the artists and their public has to be seen to be believed.”

One such community group who will be performing at this year’s festival are the extraordinary ‘Daughters of Isis’, a local Egyptian dancing team that span three generations of the same family. Eleanor Nelson and her fellow family members Joan, Cate, Yolande and Rebecca who between them are aged from twenty-five to eighty-one, are overjoyed to have the opportunity to be appearing on the festival’s opening afternoon.

“This is a brilliant opportunity for us to spread the word about the fun and health benefits you can experience through the art of dance. It is a wonderful form of self-expression and being able to perform outdoors in the very centre of our community is a dream come true,” says Eleanor. “Hot On The Streets is brilliant because it celebrates community spirit and the diversity of both the arts and our local environment and people. All of the performers coming together in such away will create a really special atmosphere in Wigan.”

In all twelve different artists will be performing over the three days of the festival (June 1st to June 3rd). Over five thousand people attended in 2004, so people are urged to get a good vantage point in the town centre as early as possible as the artists really do perform on the street and not on a stage.

Hot On The Streets is supported by the Neighbourhood Renewal Fund and is organised by Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust in partnership with Wigan Council. It is one of over twenty major arts events and festivals supported by WLCT across the borough this summer.

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