Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre, Trongate

Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre, Trongate, Glasgow

This afternoon, I visited the Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre in the Trongate, Glasgow, Scotland.
The term ‘Sharmanka’ is Russian for ‘”hurdy-gurdy” and indeed the exhibition has a fairground feel to it comprising, as it does, a large number of electro-mechanical sculptures which spring to life during designated performances with support from suitable accompanying music.
The sculptures are mainly the work of Russian emigre, Sergey Jakovsky (born St. Petersburg 1939). He co-founded the theatre, which opened in Glasgow in 1996, with fellow Russian Tatyana Jakovskaya. Sergey is still involved with the theatre and making sculptures.
The sculptures are unique and very ingenious. Certain of them suggest religious (Christian) and erotic influences.
The basic performance lasts about 35 minutes with 60 minute performances twice a week. Unusually, the audience walks around the display to view each sculpture as it comes to life. 

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