Friday Late Spectacular at Wellcome Collection

Friday Late Spectacular at Wellcome Collection, Design by Wellcome Trust 2016

An intimate evening of dance and sound to explore what it means to display and to be on display.

Location: Wellcome Collection, Euston Road

What is exposed when we are exhibited? What is seen when we are shown? What is heard when we are listened to? DISPLAY looks at opposites: the private and public, intimate and shared, exposed and hidden. Shifting between displaying and being displayed, between what is audible and what is visible, how much dare we reveal?

As exhibits for the evening, Candoco’s dancers performed throughout Wellcome Collection’s spaces, asking us to consider the subtleties and complexities of what it means to be on display. Audiences experienced a different kind of Friday Late Spectacular as Candoco brought a fresh perspective to the Collection.

Choreographer, Mirjam Gurtner said

>Working with 12 dancers for one week, I was interested in how we can really meet each other. How can we let go of set ideas and patterned replies and take the time to find out in the moment. How does your body relate to mine? What lies beneath what is already known? And how much are we ready to share in an exposed state?

Beyond performance, visitors to Wellcome Collection were invited to experience sound installations by Tom Slater and Matthew Lewis, attend a range of talks or take part in a dance workshop.

One of the activities involved filling in a questionnaire to find out how much our audience displays about itself based on where they sit on the scale of Wallflower to Peacock (see definitions below). Over 100 people took part and 95 submitted their responses. We loved finding out a bit about ourselves and it has given us a sense of who our audience was on the night. What a balanced bunch!

The results:

28.5% Wallflower

43% In the middle

28.5% Peacock

If you missed the event, this short film by Paul Fenn Films for Wellcome Trust captures the essence of the evening in just 3 minutes…

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Production Details

  • Year: 2016
  • Performance choreography by : Mirjam Gurtner
  • Curated by: Candoco Dance Company
  • Dancers: Erwin Aljukic, Megan Armishaw, Sophie Arstall, Joel Brown, Tanja Erhart, Adam Gain, Kathleen Hawkins, Leah Marojevic, Chris Owen, Laura Patay, Sindri Runudde, Toke Broni Strandby
  • Sound Design: Tom Slater and Matthew Lewis
  • Thanks: Natalie Coe, Francesca Piddlesden, Scout Davies and the team at Wellcome Collection

Wallflower - Peacock experiment definitions:


Compared to your peers, you are more of a wallflower. You are more likely to keep to yourself and be reserved in your opinions, rather than risk making a fool of yourself. Comparatively speaking, you are neither vain nor self-obsessed and image does not play a hugely important role in your life; rather, you are more about function than style. Sensibly, you know your limits and you like to ‘keep it real’.

In the middle

You have scored in the midrange region for this test, meaning that you are neither more of a wallflower nor more of a peacock – rather, you often like to be down-to-earth and keep to yourself but simultaneously you put thought into your appearance and you don’t let people push you around. Many people feel attracted to your natural charm.**


Compared to your peers, you are a more of a peacock. You care about your appearance and you feel good about it too. People are lucky to know you: you are outgoing, confident and comfortable around others, and you are often the life of the party. Socially, you often take the lead with your wonderful charisma. Life is your oyster, and there are no limits to what you can do.