Anansi The Spider (2022-)
Anansi The Spider was a participatory project led by Unlimited Core Artist Lauren Nicole Whitter for womxn of colour to create new retellings of the Anansi Spider Story. Supported by Arts Council England through their Project Grants scheme.
- The Anansi Spider Story is an Akan folktale character who takes the shape of a spider and is sometimes considered to be the God of all knowledge of stories. He is one of the most important characters in West African, African American and Caribbean folklore. Originating in West Africa, these spider tales were brought to the Caribbean during the transatlantic slave trade. Anansi is most well known for being able to outsmart and triumph over more powerful opponents through the use of cunning, creativity and wit.
- To create these retellings Lauren worked in partnership with venues to lead workshops with womxn from the Global Majority from local communities in partner venues to develop ideas through personal stories, creative workshops and staged pieces of performance, unpacking the themes within the Anansi mythologies.The project was a co-production with Anansi Theatre (that Lauren founded) and development was supported by ARC in Stockton and Derby Theatre. Initial R&D took place in Stockton in November 2022, with a further phase of R&D in Derby in February 2023. A work in progress was shared at unFinale in September 2023.
- The project continues/continued with Anansi Theatre.