Community Gets Creative to Light Up Enchanted Land at Moat Brae


Young impresario Sullivan Michael will take over the Birthplace of Peter Pan in Dumfries on Monday 30th November for a ‘Welcome to Winter’ showcase featuring work by artists from across the region as well as characters from Peter Pan. Sullivan has been so inspired by the ongoing work at Moat Brae that he couldn’t wait until it is transformed into a National Centre for Children’s Literature in 2018 and will present this free, drop-in event there for one night only from 6pm – 7.30pm following the big Christmas Lights Switch-On in the town.

1 a 1 a peter pan 9_edited-1Sullivan, aged 28, has arranged a mix of exhibitions, recitations and music which will transform Moat Brae house using light, art installations, stained glass, recitations, Peter Pan shadows, face-painting and photography. There will also be a fascinating photo documentary by Margaret Elliot highlighting buildings across the region which were designed by Walter Newall, the acclaimed Dumfries architect who built Moat Brae in 1832. Another highlight of the evening is a presentation of ‘The Ghost of Christmas Eve’ by Peter Pan creator – JM Barrie, performed by the ever popular Mostly Ghostly.

Every contributor to the event comes from the Dumfries & Galloway community and they range in age from 4 to 79 years. Some of the younger artists have been preparing in workshops at Gracefield Arts Centre and the Dumfries & Galloway Multicultural Association, others are working in groups or individually and have designed their own pieces especially for the occasion. The whole exhibition will light up the inside of Moat Brae and provide a unique insight into the creative talents of people from the region. The contributors include Mostly Ghostly, People’s Poet Peter Angelini, Carolyn Barlow, Rachel Carlyle, JP Larkin, Gordon Robertson, Sullivan, Ivor Gott, Sara Redden, Donna Winter, Sophie Jones and art students from Dumfries & Galloway College.

This Free event will also give visitors a chance to meet characters from Peter Pan and to see inside the place that inspired one of the greatest children’s stories of all time. The partially-renovated Moat Brae has been made available by the Peter Pan Moat Brae Trust who will also be displaying their plans to create an international visitor attraction and National Centre for Children’s Literature and Storytelling in the heart of Dumfries.

Organiser Sullivan Michael said: “Moat Brae is a great place which means a lot to the artists of Dumfries. I would say it’s possibly the heart of the town’s imagination, both historically and presently. Moat Brae’s done so much for the town this far, imagine what it’s got to offer for the future! I felt this exhibition would be a great chance to bring lots of imaginative folk together for the coming winter, Neverland style!”

Caroline Buck, Trustee of the Peter Pan Moat Brae Trust, said: “We are really looking forward to seeing how this artistic endeavour comes together on the day. It promises to be a lovely event, not only for the visitors who can enjoy the experience of walking around a transformed Moat Brae, but also for the individual artists who are working so hard to bring their imaginative ideas to life. We believe that everyone has the capacity to be creative and, no matter what your age, you can use your imagination to make great things happen.”

The ‘Welcome to Winter’ drop-in event is free to attend at Moat Brae house and the entertainment will run from 6.15pm on Monday 30th November following the big Christmas Light Switch on in Dumfries town centre. The house will be open from 3pm for visitors who would like to see inside the partially-renovated Birthplace of Peter Pan (which is not yet fully accessible) and to view the exhibitions

More information can be found at www.peterpanmoatbrae.org

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