Revellers were immersed in the raw and real world of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Outside the Capulet Ball, as guests showed their tickets, they were secretly marked as either members of the House of Capulet or Montague.
Rogue packs of Montagues prowled outside the queue. Fights broke out (‘Do you bite your thumb at me sir?’) between territorial Capulets and the Montague chancers.
Those guests that the security guards recognised as Montagues were thrown out at the main entrance but then puled into a disused building where other Montagues – Romeo, Benvolio and Mercutio, were debating how to gate crash the ball. After downing vials in solidarity and donning carnival masks, guests snuck past the bouncers, up the fire escape and through the industrial kitchens and backstage, until they emerged victorious into the party.
Passing through the main entrance, the ill divining soul of the play manifested through the apothecary women, handing out vials of poison (potent cocktails from Hendrick’s Gin), whispering premonitions of the deathly fate of the lovers.
Inside the Ball a gaggle of Capulet drag queen beauties welcomed guests, all sequins and squeals. Then came Opera soloists, spectacle fire performances, a gypsy band flown over from Puglia, Italy, aerial trapeze. Fights broke out as Tibalt spotted Romeo in the party, a testosterone fuelled face off ensued, with guns and breakdancing that eventually chased the Montagues out of the party. “Young hearts run free” sounded to the rafters, with confetti canons covering guests in silver and a host of international DJs then played into the early hours, finished off with the finale from the Animal Swing Kids of Berlin.
In August, Edinburgh residents were treated to the delightfully diverting Hendrick’s Emporium of Sensorial Submersion – an unprecedented panoply of sensory enlightenment, which offered audible, palatable and tangible stimulation to all curiously minded individuals, in the homeland of Hendricks gin, at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Within the sumptuous surroundings of 91 George Street, Hendrick’s Emporium of Sensorial Submersion immersed festival goers in the experimental, the esoteric and the entertaining. Charming cocktails enlivened auricular and gustatory perceptions. Guests left a smidgeon better educated and an imperial ton more befuddled by the absurd abilities of their very own senses.
Inspired by this most unusual gin, we collaborated with world-leading sound artist Mark IJzerman from HKU University of the Arts Utrecht, in order to create a programme of mind-expanding diversions that utilised the senses to deconstruct the cocktail drinking experience. They were enlightened by the harmonious sounds of cocktail shakers in the ‘Cacophony Bar’, had their palates and minds cleansed by the ‘Quietest Bar on Earth’, were part of a mysterious and magical synaesthetic experiment in a delightfully peculiar laboratory, channelled the forces of the Universe in the Quantumphysical Soundscape and were then purified in the Sonic Cucumber Bath
Hendrick’s Ministry for Marginally Superior Transport- A bureau working endlessly to help remedy the ills associated with the UK’s transport system- launched a luxurious bus service to help Londoner’s escape their travel gloom. Hendrick’s Extraordinary Roving Bus for Exceptionally Refined Travel or H.E.R.B.E.R.T as he is affectionately known.
H.E.R.B.E.R.T traversed London picking up passengers whisking them into a curious world of delight and marginally superior luxury and, of course bartenders on board the bus served the perfect Hendrick’s gin and tonic with a slice of cucumber, cocktails and offer cucumber infused macaroons.