This is a big event, and Liverpool City Council's Culture Liverpool team want to make sure as many people as possible get involved in the run up, during and after the show.
They are working in partnership with other council teams including the school improvement service along with a number of external organisations such as National Museums Liverpool, and Liverpool Primary Care Trust. Working together means an education and participation programme can be delivered which aims to bring together the entire city in memory of the events which took place on 15 April 1912.
Thousands of letters and postcards penned by Liverpool people will help form Sunday’s Sea Odyssey grand finale.
The idea for the letters, written as if they had been sent from people enjoying the Titanic’s maiden voyage, comes from the original inspiration for the giant spectacle – the letter sent by Liverpool schoolgirl May McMurray to her father who was a steward on the ill-fated liner.
The letter can be seen in 'Titanic and Liverpool: the untold story' at Merseyside Maritime Museum. The letter was never delivered and was returned to May after her father died.
In the three-day event, the 50ft diver wanders the city searching for his “little girl” niece, to give her a letter he discovered in the wreck written to her by her dead father.
Ann-Marie Vennel, from Royal de Luxe, said: “We’d done letter writing in Nantes with the idea of the Titanic, which came from Liverpool. But it has a very different resonance here. We want to make people feel like they are onboard and to get into the people’s physical spirits and their dreams, to take an identity and to think who they would send a letter to.”
Alicia Smith, Arts & Participation Manager for Culture Liverpool who coordinated the project, said: “This is the biggest participation project Royal de Luxe has been involved in.
“One of the most important things for us was how to get people involved and feel like they were really part of the show, and the letter writing is about us doing that.”
Culture Liverpool commissioned four city organisations – Writing on the Wall, the Windows Project, North End Writers and Blackburne House – to work with 18 different groups including community centres, youth centres, elders groups and primary schools.
And they also received letters independently from a further 10 Liverpool schools. Altogether, around 600 people aged between six and 80 have been involved in what has been a hush- hush project over the past few months.
From those 600, there were 100 letters chosen to be replicated and used in Sunday’s explosive finale.
Alicia said: “When we first started reading the letters, it was amazing. The imagination and content is lovely. Some are really funny and others very sad.
“It’s how it touches people, it’s that Liverpool spirit, they take on board whatever we give them and the imagination and creativity is just fascinating.”
The letters also form part of an exhibition to be held at the Merseyside Maritime Museum and Sudley House from 27th April. Such is the response the letters and postcards have had from the public who attended the event on Sunday 22nd a facebook group has been set up to celebrate and share the letters people collected - see Sea Odyssey Letters and Postcards
The Letter Writers
Emma Charlotte Bailey
Matthew De Asha
Mary - Florence Court
Ben/Riley/Marie – Walton Youth Project
Ellie Caitlin McNally
Crown St Day Centre
Jeanette & Martin – Hector Peterson Court
Thomas Vincent Powell