Theatre group exchange sweets for thoughts in unusual Norwich event

The old saying goes that nothing in life comes for free.In Norwich today that thought was being made a mockery of as free sweets were given out in exchange for people's knowledge, jokes and thoughts.

The Slung Low Knowlege Emporium hitched up outside the Forum this afternoon for the first of five days of spreading a little bit of joy in the city.

After a huge debut success at Portobello Market last July, Slung Low have brought their 'Big Book of Everything We Know' to the Norfolk and Norwich Festival.

The Knowledge Emporium is an old fashioned sweet shop in a converted 1950s airstream caravan which trades in sweets such as bon bons, jelly beans, flying saucers and sherbet lemons, but doesn't accept money.

Artistic director Alan Lane explained further, saying: 'The same thing always happens, people are always wondering what the scam is, why the sweets are for free.

'Once people realise that it isn't a scam they enjoy the innocence of the experience.

'A lot of people ask who pays for the sweets and I suppose that is the day and age we live in, things have changed and people are always worried about money.

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'But people then really enjoy that innocence because we are all a bit stressed out nowadays.'

Slung Low is a theatre company based in Leeds who have enjoyed great success with the Knowledge Emporium as at the end of their time based in various venues, they then have a new 'recipe' of people's thoughts to perform at the end of the week.

Mr Lane continued: 'We have had over 2,000 entries, but my favourite was a man who didn't speak and couldn't move his head or hands. It took about an hour to get 15 words down but it was worth it because it is like a little gift of people's thoughts.

'We believe that everyone has got something of interest and you can see that in the readings, in a good way.

'Another one I remember was a young girl in London who said she would come back the next day and tell us her thoughts for some sweets.

'Then when she came back she said, right I'm going to show you but I'll need a box of matches. We laughed and just let her have the sweets but I have always wondered what she was going to do with that box of matches!'

The Knowledge Emporium moves to Chapelfield Plain for tomorrow and Thursday, before heading back to the Forum on Friday and Saturday, between 1pm and 5pm each day.

From 6pm on Friday and Saturday they will also give out headphones for up to 300 people and talk through the knowledge that they have been passed on during the week.

david.freezer@archant.co.uk

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