Preparing for the Maelstrom

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FRASERBURGH’S streets will reverberate to the unforgettable sights and sounds of the Maelstrom parade tomorrow night (Friday).

The 2012 Shell Fireworks Parade sets off from Fraserburgh Academy at 7pm before winding through a designated route through the Broch.

Fireworks, giant marching puppets and a host of local legends take over the streets of Fraserburgh in Maelstrom part of ROOFLESS – Scotland’s biggest ever outdoor arts programme, produced by UZ Arts in collaboration with a wide-range of partners and sponsors.

The thrilling parade through the streets will feature hundreds of young folk from the Fraserburgh, Peterhead, Mintlaw and surrounding areas. Maelstrom celebrates the stories, adventurers and myths surrounding Kinnaird Head and its lighthouse. It promises to be a stunning spectacle culminating in a fantastic fiery finale.

Theatre Modo has run a youth regeneration project in the area for the last three years in partnership with Shell, the Reaching Out Project, Aberdeenshire Council and Community Planning Partners. Fraserburgh’s Fantasmagoria parade and Peterhead’s Leviathan spectacular were huge successes in 2010 and 2011, enjoyed by more than 10,000 people in the local community.

As well as the building of the lighthouse, the Maelstrom parade will bring to life a favourite local tale of mystery and intrigue, that of the ill-fated Bonaventure.

So the story goes, a Russian ship bound for England with a cargo of unquantifiable gold and other treasures was lost in a fearsome storm off the coast of Fraserburgh in 1556. Its cargo, intended as a gift from Russian Tsar, Ivan the Terrible to Queen Mary, was never to be found....

Over the five weeks that Modo have been in residence in the Broch, participants from local schools, youth and community groups have been taught to stilt walk, juggle and breathe fire as well as having the opportunity to make their own costumes and props all under the guidance of Modo’s team of professionals and volunteers.

The event is free and will be taking place whatever the weather.

Parade Route: starts at Fraserburgh Academy – Dennyduff Road – Charlotte Street – High Street – Broad Street – Victoria Terrace – Saltoun Place – Maconachie Road – ends James Ramsay Park.