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image for Film item typeThe Ballad of Shirley Collins at Colchester Arts Centre

Film, Tue 5 Dec 2017

Shirley Collins

Shirley Collins

Contact

info@colchesterartscentre.com

Address

Church Street,
Colchester,
Essex,
CO1 1NF

Details

Widely regarded as the 20th century’s most important singer of English traditional song, Shirley Collins stood at the epicentre of the folkmusic scene during the 1960s and ‘70’s. However, in 1980 she lost her voice in mysterious circumstances, and was forced to retire from musical life.

Rob Curry and Tim Plester's documentary sets out to explore the story behind the icon, and chronicles Shirley’s battle, at the grand old age of 80, to rediscover that voice she lost so many years previously. The film offsets this contemporary journey with a more literal one taken from the other end of her life, and makes fertile use of authentic 1959 audio-archive to recount the tale of Shirley’s seminal road-trip around America’s Deep South alongside her then-lover (and pre-eminent ethnomusicologist) Alan Lomax.

Featuring among others the comedian Stewart Lee, the film nonetheless eschews a straightforward biopic approach and mindfully sidesteps any rockumentary talking-heads; the filmmakers instead offering up a meditative and richly textured piece of portraiture. One which uses Shirley’s story as a prism through which to explore and reflect upon themes of heritage, posterity and the true ancestral melodies of the people. Here then is a film about loss and redemption. A film about sacrifice, healing and rebirth. A film which suggests that, during these turbulent and increasingly untethered times, we might just need Shirley Collins and all she stands for more than ever.

“They have put together a feast of virtuosity delivered with depth, wit and joy." - Legendary guitarist Ralph Towner on ‘The Colours Of Time’.

" . . . not just a guitar album to love, a jazz album to savour, but a joyous album of music that reaches toward a goal beyond.” – Jazzwise on ‘The Colours Of Time’.

“Don’t fall into the trap of assuming that this is something exclusively for guitar buffs, or even jazz buffs. If you love music of any kind, you’ll probably fall for this.” - The Observer on ‘Chasing Tales’.

Baby changing facilitiesCoach parties acceptedCredit cards accepted (no fee)Credit cards accepted (with charge)Disabled toiletsEducation/study areaFacilities for groupsAccepts groupsFacilities for conferencingFacilities for corporate hospitality

Event details

Dates Times
Tue 5 Dec 2017

Prices

Tickets £6 / £5 concessions.
Doors open 7.30pm, film starts 8pm.

Location

Directions

Plan route to Colchester Arts Centre using Google mapsPlan route using Google maps

Map reference: TL 993251  Lat: 51.88880 Long: 0.89475

Colchester Arts Centre Parking

The closest car park to the Arts Centre is St Mary's Car Park. Find out more about parking in Colchester.

By Public Transport

Many buses that come into Colchester Town Centre Colchester stop on Head Street and the High Street, which are both just a few minutes' walk from the venue.

The closest train station is Colchester Town Station, a 15 minute walk from the Arts Centre. Colchester North Station is a 20 minute walk away (follow the Fixing the Link walking trail) or only a 10 minute journey by bus.

There are bike racks at the Arts Centre.

Parking: with charge

Facilities

  • Baby changing facilitiesBaby changing facilities
  • Coach parties acceptedCoach parties accepted
  • Credit cards accepted (no fee)Credit cards accepted (no fee)
  • Credit cards accepted (with charge)Credit cards accepted (with charge)
  • Disabled toiletsDisabled toilets
  • Education/study areaEducation/study area
  • Facilities for groupsFacilities for groups
  • Accepts groupsAccepts groups
  • Facilities for conferencingFacilities for conferencing
  • Facilities for corporate hospitalityFacilities for corporate hospitality