Cuckoo is a contemporary and timeless piece carved from cherry wood and features a working cuckoo clock, bell and pendulum. This work has been made for dancer Welly O’Brien and is central to a visually striking and playful dance film from Candoco Dance Company for Sadler’s Wells digital stage. This short choreography for camera is a reflection on our changing experience of time passing, set to a poetic musical score.

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The leg, carved inside and out from 2 blocks of cherry wood, houses electronics which when operated remotely work the clock and pendulum (at various speeds). The pendulum defies gravity, working even when the leg is upside down or on its side. After a ding of the bell, the cuckoo sets  off out of the knee with chirping and the classic cuckoo song. Mounted in the socket, the clock is connected via the side steels to the battery in the leg.

Cuckoo is co-produced by Sadler’s Wells and Candoco Dance Company and made in collaboration with The Alternative Limb Project.

Bespoke Alternative Limb:
concept and design by Sophie de Oliveira
Wood carver and design input – Sam Rudman
Prosthetist – Chris Parsons
Electronics – Rory Thompson
Metal worker – Sadie Clayton
With thanks to John Downie and Bill Bruce

This film is a co-creation.
Co-directed by Charlotte Darbyshire and Sophie de Oliveira Barata
Dancer – Welly O’Brien
Filmmaker and Editor – Sarah Vaughan-Jones
Composer – Jules Maxwell Production Manager – Phil Webb
Producer – Ellie Douglas-Allan
Audio Description – Caroline Burn

With thanks to Tate Modern

Co-produced by Sadler’s Wells and Candoco Dance Company