Spanish street theatre company Sarruga share their passion for returning to Derby

Sarruga DragonsPakito Gutiérrez, director and creator. “The Sarruga project stems from a very basic idea: paper figures working on a large scale with awe-inspiring consequences.

“Sarruga has travelled the world for 22 years and the idea to create street performances comes from a very clear idea: to create enormous mechanical creatures in the form of dragons, insects fish and many more to come.

“Our shows transform everyday spaces and streets into a fantastic world, change the routine, arouse curiosity, stimulate the imagination and feed the senses of the audience.”


How did you originally become involved in Derby Festé?

“In 2007, I received an invitation to participate in the first festival. At that time, we performed with the show called Kremah Dragons. From that first contact, the following year, in 2008, we conducted another performance with the show Insectes. In 2011 we returned to Festé with Peixos.

“Derby has always been very open to receiving the original Sarruga creativity. The ability to see the reaction of an audience like Derby, over the years and with different shows, is very enriching for me because it allows me to share with them and also observe the evolution of our work.

“As for the UK, in recent years it has become one of the countries where we show my work. I must say that we have always had an excellent, cheerful

IMG_4315 and friendly welcome, in our actions, by the public.”

“For a few years, the situation for street arts has become very difficult due to the economic problems in our country and throughout Europe in general. I think the street theatre is very important because it is probably the most democratic and free way to bring art to all people, and to get communities to share emotions in an open way.

“In this case, Derby Festé represents one of these platforms, perhaps one of the most important for the company Sarruga.”

Why the arts are important to you?

“Street art, in its various artistic disciplines such as music, theatre and sculpture, is one of the best ways to get people from all cultures and backgrounds together. Another aspect that I think is important is to bring something different to the places we are so familiar. Urban interventions transform the streets to become full of magic, and the public can see their city in a completely different way.

“Without any doubt, nature is what motivates me to build Sarruga shows. Animal life and our relationship to it, is what excites me to continue working, especially now, where we are slowly destroying the ecosystems of this planet. Somehow, the characters in the shows become ambassadors of nature remind us to protect the environment and if they disappear, we will too.

“I would love everyone to come and to see the show and to go with the music, images, joy and magic that we try to convey, you try to open your mind and return to childhood for a moment.”

IMG_4344What do Sarruga have planned for the future?

“Indeed, the future is already present. Apart from the shows that we have presented in the three at Derby Festé with the of dragons, insects and fish, we performed two new shows: one on the African savannah featuring elephants and giraffes called Hannavas; and Arktika which features heroes of the Arctic: polar bears. For next year, we hope to make a new production. There are several issues on which we want to work, including one very colourful, the world of plants and flowers. Another possibility is to approach the world of primates. We will see what finally we decided.”

Which have been the most important moments in the career of Sarruga?

“Over the past 22 years, we have had many moments that have marked the history of the company. Some have been very positive and others very difficult. It has not always been easy to continue the career of Sarruga. Nevertheless, being able to show our work in various parts of the world such as South America, Asia and North America has motivated us to keep working, and allowed us to stay in an independent way in our creations.

“We will start next year with a new tour of the Festival Teatro a Mil in Chile, where we present our work. We are also looking to perform in China, Montreal and Acapulco. These job prospects keep us excited, but perhaps the most important goal is the creation of a new show.”


The giant fire breathing dragons will stalk through the streets of Derby from Riverlights down St Peters Street and into the Cathedral Quarter on Friday 23 September from 8.45pm to 9.45pm.


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