Anniversary Party

There was some debate in the Stan’s Cafe office as to whether it counted as hubris to have a 25th Anniversary Party. The deal we came to was that we would throw a party but only if we had a new show at its heart and that this show would be inspired by the tension between celebrating your own modest endurance in the context of world events. The other condition was that we would do the party properly, pull out all the stops and make it an evening to remember.

So our friends at mac agreed to let us take over the venue for a night. We made a new show, Time Critical, for the main theatre. We screened the film of Twilightofthefreakingods in the cinema. An installation with projections, slides and monitors filled the cafe walls. Having chosen a day between exhibitions we were able to place active installation pieces from our archive in the upper gallery and filled the lower gallery with objects from our history. Around the public spaces food stations were themed around shows from our back-catalogue. We commissioned a magnificent cake. We made speeches thanking people, talking a little of what is to come, launched Scheming Friends (our individual giving initiative) and then Graeme stormed the stage to smash up the magnificent cake with a cricket bat; his message was clear Stan’s Cafe isn’t about the comfort of cake – Stan’s Cafe is dead, long live Stan’s Cafe.

Tour Dates

  • 13 November, 2016
    MAC, Birmingham


Studio Theatre: Time Critical
25 minutes of world history vs 25 minutes of personal history
A new show devised by Rochi Rampal, Craig Stephens and James Yarker
Performed by Rochi Rampal and Craig Stephens with Direction from James Yarker

The Cinema: Twilightofthefreakingods
A film by Reel Access of a performance by Stan’s Cafe
Filmed @ AE Harris, Birmingham 10 & 12 October, 2013

Upstairs Gallery: (mostly) hands on activities from
It’s Your Film
24 Hour Scalextric
Finger Trigger Bullet Gun
The Steps Series
and Of All The People In All The World

Downstairs Gallery: Archive exhibition
With help on the day by Ana Rutter

Around the building: Food Stations
Food by MAC Catering
Designs by Denise Stanton inspired by:
Bingo in the House of Babel (popcorn)
The Anatomy of Melancholy (pies)
Fruit and Veg Cities (vegetables dips Etc.)
A Translation of Shadows (sushi)
Comfort Hour (deserts)

DJs: Alan James and Graeme Rose
Video Work: Grey Circle
Production Management: Darren Walter
Executive Producer: Roisin Caffrey
Administration: Jessie Coller
Photographs: Graeme Braidwood
With thanks to everyone who has helped, especially mac and its staff.