Event Information

Birmingham 2022 Festival presents:  

Cultures In Common  

A Creative City Project generously supported by Birmingham City Council  

12pm – 4pm Sunday 17th July 2022  

At Selwyn Road Playing Fields and The Red Shed  

 B16 0SL – access from the path around Edgbaston Reservoir  

Cultures in Common is working with 15 groups of local people alongside professional artists to celebrate the reservoir through creativity.  This event will showcase and share their artwork, with creative activities to get involved in and a procession at 2pm around part of the reservoir that you can watch or join in with. Food and drink will be provided at the Red Shed.  

If you require any access support when attending this event please call, text or WhatsApp 07967 187822. Accessible parking is available at 79 Selwyn Road, B16 0SL

Performances in the marquee 

Some of the groups will be sharing the performances they have created in the Cultures in Common project in the marquee 

Time Dance group Piece 
12.30pm  Wan Sheung Chinese Cultural Dance Group Kung Fu Fan Dance 
12.35pm BREZA Slovak folk Dance    
12.45pm Birmingham Chinese Dancing Group Dun Huang Chinese Sculpture 
12.50pm Singamajig   
1.00pm Wan Sheung Chinese Cultural Dance Group Shuffle Dance 
1.05pm Open Theatre   
1.15pm Birmingham Chinese Dancing Group The Happiness 
3.00pm Birmingham Chinese Dancing Group The Happiness 
3.05pm BREZA Slovak folk Dance    
3.15pm Birmingham Chinese Dancing Group Dun Huang Chinese Sculpture 
3.20pm Open Theatre   
3.30pm Singamajig  

Wan Sheung is an amateur dance group that enables Chinese women to stay connected to their cultural heritage through learning and performing a variety of regional dances.  The group is diverse in age and experience as well as originating from different parts of China, Hong Kong and Vietnam.  Wan Sheung wear regional costumes appropriate to their dances so they are visually engaging and will perform a drum dance using small side drums and cymbals.  

BREZA Slovak folk dancing group are part of the Czech & Slovak Club UK CIC. Artist Petra Dono has worked with the group to create a special performance for the event with live musicians and children’s choir. They will be performing in the marquee at 12.35pm and 3.05pm and also joining the procession at 2pm. Czech & Slovak Club UK CIC have also been making traditional Czech flower crowns with artist Gosia Weber which participants will be wearing in the procession at 2pm. 

The Birmingham Chinese Dancing Group performs classical and folk-dance around the UK for cultural events and celebrations. They also organize dance workshops, and will perform the dances Dunhuang Coloured Sculpture and The Happiness.  

Dunhuang coloured sculptures were built in Dunhuang Mogou Crottoes, which were originally from the Han Dynasty thousands of years ago. This piece of Chinese traditional dancing mimics sculpture’s grace and vitality through combination of facial expression, hand movements and postures.  

The Happiness is a Classical Chinese dance with silks fans. The music comes from Chinese Dancing Drama (Confucius). It is a relaxing piece of music. 

Open Theatre use nonverbal physical theatre to collaborate with young people with learning disabilities, creating quality art which reflects and celebrates their unique creativity.  They wholeheartedly believe in the ability of young people with learning disabilities to contribute to the creative and cultural life of the places where they live, and work as advocates for their valued involvement as artists and leaders. For Cultures in Common, Open Theatre are creating a physical theatre response to the Commonwealth Games and what it means to young people who live in and around Birmingham. It will be wacky, wild and one to remember! 

Singamajig has been working in the local community to support singers of all ages to rejig a range of call and response songs from around the world to create new call and response songs that reflect their views of the reservoir, their hopes for the reservoir and anything else they wish to sing about! The group will lead the singing and we hope to create a participatory feel for those who attend.  

Procession at 2pm 

The procession will leave the playing field at 2pm heading towards the Rotton Park Road reservoir entrance and will loop around there and head back to the playing field. 

Groups in the procession: 


Karis Neighbour Scheme 

Birmingham Chinese Dancing Group  

Saheli Ladies’ Bellboat Racing Team 

Open Theatre 

Wan Sheung Chinese Cultural Dance Group – Chinese Community Centre 

Civic Square with Xi’an Loves 

Czech and Slovak Club UK CIC – BREZA Slovak Folk Dance Group and Czech Flower Crowns 

Creative activities and displays 

Discover all of the creative activities groups have been exploring as part of the Cultures in Common project and get creative yourself in the circle of pergolas near the marquee. We also have guest organisations providing information and activities around the field. 

Cultures in Common activities and displays  

Katy Hawkins has been inviting appreciators of the Reservoir to write Tanka poems, following two 
creative walks we hosted in July 2022. You can find the poems installed at the particular sites they relate to, dotted all around the reservoir. 
We hope you enjoy encountering the poems, and that you will write and add your own Tanka to the collection. 

Artist Elizabeth Naylor has worked with Karis Neighbour Scheme to create batik flags that participants will be carrying in the procession. Elizabeth will also be inviting you to creae your own tie died flag at the event. 

Artist Xi’an Loves has been working with local people at Civic Square’s Front Room and other venues in the lcoal area to create placards about people’s thoughts and feelings about the reservoir. They will be part of the procession at 2pm and displayed in the circle of pergolas. 

Bring your little piece of Birmingham to make a model of the reservoir! Model maker Steve Walker from Newbigin Community Trust invites you to bring leaves, stones, and found treasures from your local area to create a miniature model of the reservoir and surrounding areas.  

The Saheli Hub  promotes health and wellbeing within the community. Saheli’s ladies’ bellboat racing team have created a boat structure made out of recycled materials.  The textile sail which is decorated with patterns and symbolic imagery illustrates their connection to the Edgbaston Reservoir and celebrates their cultural background. 

The Good News is a non-traditional printed newspaper, co-created by and for the neighbourhood. Neighbours take on the roles of reporters to share the good news of today, and imagine what the good news will be twenty years into the future. Anyone can be a reporter, everyone has something to share.    

Generous Waste and artist Khadijah Carberry have worked with Ladywood Leisure Women’s Group and residents of St Vincent Street to turn paper waste into something new and beautiful. Join Khadijah and participants to have a go at making paper and discover the artwork the groups have created on paper that they have made. After a paper making and paper decorating session using lino printing techniques as well as printing using plant matter from the neighbourhood, they’ll be joining you on Sunday with a papermaking workshop using recycled waste paper from the neighbourhood such as single use coffee cups! There are so many special places and people on St Vincent Street. Portraits of residents will be exhibited with voice notes attached so passers-by can listen in.. The Portraits are printed on handmade paper.  On the day there will also be workshops using paper to explore voice, history, heritage and place. 

Artist Wahida Kouser has worked with Benson Community Hub Women’s Group to create a collage inspired by the reservoir. Join Wahida and some of the participants on the day to create your own collage. 

Other groups, projects and activities at the event 

Birmingham Settlement and Edgbaston Reservoir Running and Wellbeing Group 

Birmingham Settlement are hosting the event in the playing field and Red Shed. They are also providing sports activities in the field and food and drink for visitors and participants in partnership with Edgbaston Reservoir Running and Wellbeing Group. 

Civic Square 

Civic Square are hosting a Regenerative Neighbourhoods Festival in Selwyn Road Playing Field from 10th to 28th July and are kindly hosting our event within their beautiful marquee and pergolas, and providing drinks and cakes in the Red Shed. 

The National Trust 

The National Trust will be explaining how residents and organisations based around the number 11 bus route can receive a free blossom tree this winter, as part of their Blossom Together project. You can also create a mandala-inspired blossom petal for our tree mural. 

Dreaming the Reservoir 

Ladywood Arts Forum & Bertz Associates presents “Dreaming the Reservoir”, a visual arts workshop with Gugan Gill. The open workshop focusses on visitors engaging in conversations around the Edgbaston Reservoir, taking ownership of what this space means to the community. The workshop will encourage participants to draw on their own experiences, thinking about what they love about or dream of for the reservoir and its future, helping to create a reimaged map of the reservoir. 
Gugan’s practice is a visual and poetic investigation  exploring themes of home, identity, time and place through a sense of community and conversation. Her practice led approach to making is vital to her art, creating a space that allows for all of us to engage with the world around us. Delving into the importance of radical (re)learning and community, her approach to making revolves around documenting and reflecting on the wonders of everyday, capturing a sense of domestic feminism and the life story.   

Smashing Metal Blacksmithing Group 
Based in Winson green, the Smashing Metal Blacksmithing Group  will be demonstrating blacksmithing and displaying work from their anti-knife crime project from their youth and men’s group with some items for sale!