Internationally renowned Trigger call North Somerset new home
- Award winning creative producers Trigger move to Blagdon, North Somerset
- Trigger mark one year of working with local asylum seekers as National Refugee Week approaches
- Plus more shows in development: from Manchester to Melbourne
Trigger: Thinking globally acting locally
Having recently joined the Arts Council England’s cohort of National Portfolio Organisations (NPO), theatre makers Trigger are relocating from Bristol to their permanent home in Blagdon, North Somerset, an Arts Council England priority place.
Trigger have become known for their award-winning public arts events at an ambitious scale, from The Hatchling – a giant flying dragon puppet – to PoliNations – a supersized city centre garden in Birmingham. Their work has impacted live audiences of over 200,000 people in the last two years.
Led by North Somerset based Co-Directors Angie Bual and Natalie Adams, Trigger’s varied and socially driven work has impacted diverse communities across the UK: from refugees to isolated healthcare patients during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the last twelve months alone, project research has brought Trigger into collaboration with indigenous elders, scientists, artists and community leaders in Australia, Vietnam, India and Pakistan.
Along with their newly awarded NPO status, this upcoming move promises to bring these collaborations to fruition with work for everyone to enjoy; from North Somerset, across the UK as well as internationally.
Refugee Week: Humanity Hotel and TEABREAK engage local Asylum Seekers
Ahead of their move to the area, Trigger have been working with the local community and creative organisations across the region as they lead on a coordinated support initiative for asylum seekers in North Somerset.
Through a WhatsApp group set up by Angie Bual with hotel residents in May 2022, collections of clothes and personal items, lift sharing, voluntary opportunities and college placements have all been facilitated. Founded by Bual, a steering group and wider local network now support this community on a regular basis.
Since November 2022 Trigger has partnered with Watershed, Bristol Old Vic, Taunton Brewhouse and Loves Café in Weston-Super Mare to collect unused mobile phones and technology for the residents of two refugee hotels, allowing them to contact loved ones and undergo studies.
As they move company operations to the area, Trigger are now leading on the delivery of an ongoing creative and cultural programme for 250+ asylum seekers housed in North Somerset hotels. Featuring regular cooking events, workshops and opportunities for cultural and creative expression, the programme is being developed alongside those it’s designed to support.
Following preview performances in Chew Valley and a local refugee hotel last month, Trigger have begun touring their heart warming new show TEABREAK to UK festivals this summer.
Told from a specially commissioned tuk tuk, TEABREAK explores the story of tea and its Western popularity, beginning with an undercover mission to China where botanist Robert Fortune went to steal the secrets of its cultivation.
Audiences are invited to enjoy a cup of free chai or peppermint tea and experience an audio collage of voices from people of different ages and backgrounds accompanied by two classical Indian Kathak dancers who interpret the journey. Commissioned by the Without Walls Consortium, TEABREAK brings the opportunity for an immersive Trigger experience in locations across the UK.
Angie Bual, Creative Director of Trigger, said:
“The scope and scale of Trigger’s work has escalated at an incredible rate in the last few years. From responding to international movements like the wave of BLM protests after the death of George Floyd, to helping refugee and asylum seekers in our local area – we’ve used creativity to develop artistic participatory responses to Global injustice.
We want our region to lead as an example of creative and adaptive community building. We’ve built incredible collaborative relationships with artists, creatives, other organisations in the area who have a similar goal in mind; we’re excited to continue this work as we relocate permanently to North Somerset.
To be welcomed into the new NPO in a challenging economic environment is a privilege. It means that we can continue our commitment to tackling social need and creating community cohesion with our inclusive and memorable events. We are excited to continue to create work with artists from all artforms at a hyper-local, national and international level.”
Phil Gibby, Area Director, Arts Council England, South West, said:
“We are thrilled to welcome Trigger Productions to our National Portfolio, where they will receive regular funding and support for the next three years. As an internationally renowned company, Trigger Productions will use this funding to develop ambitious plans and create high-quality productions that resonate with diverse communities across the country. From the spectacular public display of The Hatchling, which began its journey in Plymouth and took centre stage in London, to the inclusive and participatory work in North Somerset, Trigger Productions is committed to engaging audiences and pushing the boundaries of creativity. We eagerly anticipate the next chapter of their journey as they help us achieve our strategy, Let’s Create, and make England a great place to live, play, and work for everyone, regardless of their background or location.”