Behind the scenes with the Giants

Memories of August 1914, Royal de Luxe Giants in Liverpool
July 28th, 2014
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I do have a ton of photos from the full five days to put on the blog (you can see more of them already at my archive), but there are so many great pictures of the giants moving around (especially here at Mark McNulty’s Rivercool and Pete Carr’s Over the Water)  that I’ve decided to go for something a little different, a look at the men and women who keep the Giants on the move day after day.  Without them, the giants are just statues, but they’re the ones who make them move, give them identities and make us care about the antics of Grandma, the Little Girl and especially Xolo, but to most, they’re almost invisible when they climb aboard their huge rides.

I was lucky enough to spend an hour hanging around with them on the final morning, when the Giants were still asleep at Clarence Dock and there was no audience waiting to see them come to life.  This is probably as close as you get to hanging out backstage with a couple of giants and their handlers!  Normally the audience just gets to see the Lilliputian operators bussed in and march to their posts in military like fashion, barely a smile amongst them as they prepare for what is a physically and mentally demanding day ahead.  On Sunday, however, it was oh so different.  With no audience around, the arena was filled with music, dancing, stretches and a lot of laughs.  It was great to see them all relaxed and having fun, even if a bit of it was at my expense!  It was a brilliant end to a perfect weekend and that hour on Sunday, was my own personal highlight.  That seems strange to say given the incredible sights I’ve seen over the weekend, but it was just nice to be with a group of people who all clearly have a great time doing what they do.

 (Martin Waters)

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 And just to finish off a quick and dirty iphone video of a bit of that dancing!

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