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06 March 2024
7:00pm - 8:00pm
Free to CCCU staff and students, or £10, £5 concessions

An Exploration, in music, dance and the spoken word, of an ancient ritual

Pilgrimage will take you into the mystical recesses of the Cathedral's most ancient space: the Eastern Crypt. Some say the shadowy outline of Thomas à Becket can be seen on one of the 12th-century pillars. What is certain is that it's a place of quiet and timeless reflection.

Until, that is, the peace was shattered by the thousands of pilgrims who flocked to Canterbury after the murder of Becket in 1170 to venerate the mortal remains of the man whose fame spread across Christendom in the following years. His body lay there until Archbishop Stephen Langton, in response to popular demand, had it moved upstairs to the Trinity Chapel in 1220.

That must have left the Crypt as we find it today, and it is into this space that we bring our music, words, and movement to contemplate the notion of Pilgrimage, then and now. Chaucer makes his inevitable appearance, but our very own Sonia Overall contributes her experience of pilgrimage to Walsingham. Between those two writers, we hear from others of all ages and faiths. Meanwhile our music evokes both the spirit of medieval minstrelsy and modern reflection, as we hear in Vaughan Williams' settings of texts from Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress.

Performances will last approximately 50 minutes, and there will be two of them: one at 7.00 pm, one at 8.30 pm. There will, of course, be provision for anyone with mobility issues, but performers and audience will be free to move around the Crypt as different elements of the piece unfold.

Candlelight and the creative lighting of our talented colleagues will enhance what should be an unforgettable event for performers and audience alike.

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