Established in 2008, Hocus Pocus Theatre collaborates creatively with multi-skilled artists to devise shows. Their work is rooted in the surreal, seeking to transport audiences to another world and giving them the freedom to explore alternate realities, get up close and personal with intriguing characters and get wrapped up in the magic of it all.
The company has outdoor shows and walkabout acts suitable for the whole family and immersive theatre shows, transforming venues and making epic site specific and responsive shows that disrupt perceived normality and put the audience in the driving seat. Having never strayed too far from their cabaret and walkabout roots, their unique interactive style seamlessly blends comedy with the absurd.
“Pushing at the boundaries of experimental and crossing into the bizarre. They do it superbly well this fresh young company, never taking themselves too seriously and mixing genres, fusing styles and lampooning horror with happy abandon.” – David Porter, Eastern Daily Press
Hocus Pocus Theatre are Associate Artists of SeaChange Arts.
Their work has been funded and supported by:
Arts Council England, StartEast and Norfolk County Council.
Lucy Enskat - Artistic Director
Lucy dreams up the concepts for the creative work of the company and wears multiple hats in the making of it. From director, writer, designer and producer to performer, promoter and manager there’s a lot this lady now knows about making theatre happen. Driven by a genuine desire to put the audience at the centre of the experience and to make it an unforgettable and moving one, Lucy is a visual storyteller who enjoys igniting imaginations and empowering people through play.
With a degree in Drama from the University of East Anglia and having studied prior to that at The Oxford School of Drama Lucy has since taken Masterclasses in Clown with Complicite, Avner Eisenberg, Phillipe Gaulier and Peta Lily. As a performer and Clown she feels she is continually learning but found herself delivering workshops to UEA undergraduates this year, completing a full circle after 20 years working in the industry.
A great believer in the power of humour to transform and of the arts to instigate positive change and increase wellbeing, Lucy also works on the side as a Clown Doctor for Suffolk Artlink and as a Creative Practitioner in a variety of settings with people of all ages and abilities. She is also on the Board of Trustees at Norwich Puppet Theatre.
Collaboration is at the core of the company’s work and Lucy sees her role as an instigator, valuing each artist she works with and their individual talents and providing stimuli for them to make beautiful work together and make magic happen for those who experience it.
Take a scroll down below through a list of some of Hocus Pocus Theatre’s core collaborators and key players. We have worked with so many tallented artists over the years but these ones have done time for us on more than one occasion.
Kate Evans - Creative Producer / Performer / Collaborator
Kate Evans is a theatre & circus performer, workshop facilitator and arts administrator. She has worked in outdoor performance since 1994 when she founded street theatre company Creature Feature with whom, amongst other performance troupes, she has performed nationally and internationally. She is a skilled stilt walker and experienced deviser of comedy performance. She worked for Hocus Pocus Theatre as a Creative Assistant in 2018, a role funded by Start East as part of a business development plan for the company. Kate was assistant producer alongside the Artistic Director for the company's last ACE funded show 'Factory of Broken Dreams'. She is a core team player for the project, co-producing and working creatively to assist the Artistic Director on the realisation of shows and contributing as an experienced interactive performer.
Louise Cole - Creative Collaborator / Performer
Louise was one of the original devising team behind Sideshow of Curiosities and toured with the company to France for the Fish n Chips Festival at Soteville Les Rouen’s Atelier 231. The company also spent some time in residency there. She and Lucy Enskat collaborated on most of the company’s double walkabout acts from the infamous Swingers in drag to Bills and Moon’s creative writing boudoir. Louise is a skilled improviser and interactive performer. She works as part of the company’s Clown Ensemble and still plays the occasional mermaid. A talented and brilliant creative, she has made her own accessible sensory work and recently had her first short story published.
Saffron Saffron - Performer / Collaborator
Saffron has been performing professionally since 1995. She specialises in singing, musical and comic outdoor street theatre, site-specific installations, clowning shows and audience-interactive adventures. She co-ran Theatre of Adventure for many years alongside Charlotte Arculus, performing their shows Organzola & Friends, The Percussion Monkeez, The Lah Revolution, as well as many commissioned community outdoor theatre projects. They still work together on Magic Adventure, an indoor immersive theatre installation for Early Years.
Saffron’s current ongoing street theatre shows include The Ukulele Elves and The Banana Ukulele Band, and is also lead singer of The Sweetbeats. She first performed with Lucy Enskat in 2008 in ToA’s Forest Quest (an outdoor site-specific theatre/adventure game) and joined Hocus Pocus’s Clown Ensemble in 2018.
Beverley Bishop - Performer / Collaborator
Beverley Bishop is a passionate advocate of the power of laughter to improve health and wellbeing. She is an actor, therapist and laughter yoga practitioner. She combines her skills to provide events and workshops that are fun, interactive and informative.
For five years she was one half of the double act The Tinamarinas, taking their show Being Gorgeous to the Edinburgh Fringe and receiving a nomination for Best Comedy Show at the Buxton Fringe. She was commissioned by Arts NK to create an immersive theatre experience set in a pampering parlour in an experience that explored the connection between arts, health and wellbeing. Following this he created The Complimentary Critic for Cley Exhibition. This was an interactive promenade performance created with the aim of generating debate, playfulness and evaluation data for the participating artists and organisers. She joined the Hocus Pocus Theatre Clown Ensemble in 2018 and is an associate this year on the company’s new, Laughter Matters production, ‘Fun Clinic’.
Lalita is a freelance performing artist who also manages Theatre of Escapades. She creates character-based theatre for the stage, street, cabaret and immersive installations in a variety of spaces with interactive comic fun. She has also worked within performing arts education for some years in various capacities. As a DJ's Lalita plays eclectic music and heads up female DJ collective GRL DEM producing a club event at Norwich Arts Centre among other venues. Performing with Hocus Pocus Theatre on numerous occasions over the years in walkabout for their events; at Salon Rouge in Cambridge; in installation with them at SHOWZAM, Blackpool and in 'GUILTY PARTY!'. Lalita is also currently working on a wellbeing project of her own and is part of the collaborating team for ‘Fun Clinic’.
Freddie is a comic performer and director, who recently graduated from University of Kent’s School of Arts. While in Canterbury he directed thrifty devised comedy and an adaptation of Coraline, infusing his work in the light and campy with sombre twists.
Since graduating he has launched his theatre company Bon Appétit Theatre, with reality TV parody, The Last Supper: Gospel of a Heinous Housewife. This ran for 20 nights in Edinburgh at PBH’s Free Fringe 2019. He also writes and performs for BBC New Voices, as well as doing stand-up regularly. He also joined the Hocus Pocus Theatre Clown Ensemble in 2018 and is an associate this year on the company’s new, Laughter Matters production, ‘Fun Clinic’.
Lucy Garland - Performer / Collaborator / Co-Writer
Lucy has performed as one of the company’s Bearded Ladies, meeting Prince Charles on whom she made quite an impression. She also devised and co-wrote the original GUILTY PARTY! script with Lucy Enskat and together they adapted it for the Norwich Arts Centre extravaganza for NYE 2016. A remarkable individual, she also runs her own company Frozen Light who create exciting and original multi-sensory theatre for audiences with profound and multiple learning disabilities (PMLD) and tour their productions across the UK.
Laura McGill & Sarah Lewis
Dancers / Choreographers / Performers
Laura and Sarah are visionary dance artists, choreographers and teachers who run Glass House Dance. They have collaborated with Hocus Pocus Theatre and performed in GUILTY PARTY. Laura also choreographed ensemble moments for ‘Night Magic’. We love working with these wonderful ladies. They know how to get people moving with their infectious passion for dance and play a mean pair of criminals too.
GOSSAMER THREAD CIRCUS
Daisy Black - Aerialist
Alex McAleer - Mindreader
This dynamic duo combine the talents of Daisy Black, aerialist, writer and founder of contemporary circus company Gossamer Thread Circus and International Mindreader extraordinaire Alex McAleer. Alex has been touring with Champions of Magic and Daisy producing her own shows and cabarets together as well as touring their own acts. They headed up the cabaret element of GUILTY PARTY and co-wrote Night Magic with Hocus Pocus Theatre, famous for their macabre act of actually sawing Daisy in half. Has to be seen to be believed.
Ali Houiellebecq - Musician / Performer
Ali is an extraordinary multi instrumentalist and theatre performer and has been a core-collaborator composing and making music with the other show musicians for GUILTY PARTY!, Night Magic AND Factory of Broken Dreams. She also composed music for ‘Like A Tree’ too.
Akustriks believes in music being not only an audible experience but a visual one too. She is a veteran of this having worked over the years with Mummerandada, Ra Ra Zoo, Desperate Men and Le La Les among others. She has recently been working with Ramshakalicious on their show Band At The End of the World. We love Ali and our audiences love her too.
Paul Preston Mills
Another multi-skilled and talented associate of the company, Paul compered many of the company’s No Strings Cabaret events. A cabaret artist himself as part of the double act Lipstick and Wax, he also worked with the company on Night Magic for which he was commissioned to make his mad monkey puppet Psychic Simian. Actor, street performer and puppeteer this man brings a lot of experience to the company over the years.
DJ Jazzlord brings the wonders of live vintage vinyl to most of Hocus Pocus Theatre’s events and has been doing so for the last 10 years. Co-promoter of the No Strings Boogaloo events at Norwich Arts Centre. He plays a wild mix of Jazz, Blues, Rhythm n Blues, Hot Gospel, Doo Wop, Soul, Funk, Jamaican Ska, Capypso, Cumbia, Latin Boogaloo and Afrobeat. Setting the mood carefully for all our immersive events he has played a few cameo roles over the years too from Death to the Starving Artist. Occasional stuntman he stole the show a bit in Sideshow of Curiosities jumping over the Bearded Lady on a kid’s BMX. Unsurprisingly he grew up in the theatre and takes to the roles we throw at him like a complete pro.
Dominic Biddle is a multidisciplinary artist, director, performer, puppeteer and mask maker currently working as a Creative Associate of theatre company 1927. He came on board with Hocus Pocus Theatre as part of the Clown Ensemble and embroiled in the making of a new piece about Nelson the Clown and the Great Yarmouth suspension bridge disaster which was scratched and shared at SeaChange Arts Open Doors event this year. He was also part of the core team of collaborators for Factory of Broken Dreams playing the sleep worker and shoe maker character. He was commissioned to make a puppet for this show too and created an unforgettable installation performance in Norwich Puppet Theatre’s Paris for this.