Town Hall - Dank Parish
2014-2017 | Boomtown Fair | Crew: 86 | Audience: 52.5k

Town Hall

“I am the saviour of the people and the hero of the poor. From the shadows of my prison cell I have crawled, to prove to you, my people, that I am dedicated to our cause. But this is not a one-way street. Now you must prove yourselves to me”

The Town Hall, BoomTown’s flag-ship immersive theatre venue, placed Dank Parish at the heart of BoomTown’s interactive storyline. Over 3 years, The Town Hall traced the development of Comrade Jose’s political journey from benevolent democrat to military dictator. In year 1, in  a fully interactive, immersive polling day experience, The Town Hall opened its doors to Boomtown’s voting public; six unique theatrical experiences, representing the 6 mayoral candidates from across BoomTown’s districts, vied for the support, and all important vote, of the punters. Comrade Jose’s victory heralded a dream of a brighter future. How quickly things turned sour:

‘YOU WILL SUPPORT COMRADE JOSE’

Good intentions were soon replaced by paranoia, and in years 2 and 3, she insisted punters prove themselves to the increasingly insecure regime, first with citizenship, after with extreme loyalty tests. As part of the experience the audience could choose completely different through-lines, as either loyalists or those who sought to topple the regime.

Interactive installations inside a labyrinth of rooms: a futuristic technological command centre from where punters could spy on different parts of the festival, a free love hippy commune with egg decorating and spiritual guidance, a grotesque beautifying parlour with cartoon beauticians,  a high stakes poker game with gangster-clowns, a fortune telling gypsy-lodge, and a Mexican Day of the dead journey to the void and back.

In years 2 and 3, It was Ms Jose’s intention to unite the whole of BoomTown under the banner of peace and friendship. Co-operation had to be insisted upon, for we are only as strong as our weakest member. Players were  given a ‘passport’ and through the completion of theatrical tasks, earned stamps to qualify them as fully-fledged citizens. Through completing interactive tasks, the player could ‘level up’ and enter the next phase of the story.


"You never really know what is round the next corner"

- bournemouth echo

"A Hunger Games-style dictatorship"

- never enough notes

"An astute subversive critique"

- london in stereo

"All the genres came together"

- outline