Working with Festive Road to produce the soundtrack to this year’s Paraffinalia was a pleasure. I was glad to be involved from the outset, helping to shape the performance and responding to the ideas of the design, pyrotechnic and puppetry teams. The feedback I got from the production team was positive and constructive and helped immensely in creating music that supported the movement of the various characters and the moods in each scene.
I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge of creating the soundtrack and have been impressed again by the level of professionalism, organisation and creative energy at Festive Road.

Richard Bentley - Musical Director,

The arts play an integral role in the educational and personal development of young people, and the vibrancy and dynamism of the community as a whole.
Festive Road stokes the fire of the heart of Milton Keynes, like no artistic organisation I have ever come across before. The excitement, the unity of spirit and the collective awe at such breath-taking creative marvels, in a park that was empty just hours before, was tangible throughout the Paraffinalia Festival. It pushed the boundaries of what I thought possible for a free community festive and, as such ,it puts Milton Keynes on the map, not only locally but internationally. The Arts Council should be commended for recognising and supporting the area’s most innovative export. In the light of the unexpected, social barriers are brought down, and in a time when this is essential, Festive Road never ceases to amaze.

Stephanie Finegan, Puppeteer,

It’s always an exciting and stimulating experience when we are asked to work on a Festive Road project.
There’s always a special feeling of collaboration, being part of a creative work that’s essence is participatory, a process that stretches and includes both makers and audience; the participants are brought together to form exciting visual work.
These artists have the craft to form atmospheric staging on a big scale, there’s brilliant technical invention. We worked on the Paraffinalia show; I climbed up the little hill to get a good view of all the lantern work - it was stunning, a medieval camp of mythical knights and court jesters had appeared in Campbell Park!
This is art as a tool, touching the collective subconscious, empowering, enriching and playful.

Chris Winch, Bright Spark Fireworks,

I have been privileged to work with Festive Road for a few years now. They are joy to work with; really pushing the bounds with their carnival puppet work; always striving to create something that is uniquely engaging and aesthetically sophisticated. There are not many companies in the U.K. who are creating work of such confidence and constant experimentation in terms of how to bring puppets to life, and actually push puppetry as an art form.
For many years I lived and worked in Spain, working with the professional puppet makers and performers pushing the bar of high level international puppetry. When I returned to the UK, I sought the equivalent here and, luckily enough, at a workshop with Mandinga met Jessica the Creative Director of Festive Road.
Paraffinalia really did show that they could bring a group of skilled practitioners together and harness them with a strong vision.

Jo Munton, Vagabondi Puppets,