LANDED in Brixham

Ageing Well Festival LogoWe’re delighted to be taking part in Torbay’s Ageing Well Festival, especially as the event addresses some of the same ideas about older members of our communities as our LANDED project set out to investigate and challenge. All sorts of events are happening across the 1st-4th in Torquay, Paignton and Brixham: we’ll be taking a look at some of the other projects while we’re there.

With LANDED, we’ll be working with local elders to share their stories at the quayside in Brixham on Saturday 3rd October — we’ll be there from 10:30 until 4:30, so there’s plenty of chances to listen to someone else’s loves and to share your own as part of the installation around our chambers!

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Rest

Having spent a week in Marrakech, we are back and ready for the Autumn Season which sees us taking Manpower on the north west road, landing with Landed on a Devon harbour, devising a show with third year students at University of Winchester and taking Near Gone on a trip abroad.

Come and see:

An ending

We have spent three weeks in Edinburgh! It has been exhilarating, exhausting, difficult at times but mostly BRILLIANT! We are very pleased to have been assessors for the exceptional Total Theatre Awards, we performed Near Gone to full audiences, leading to lots of lovely conversations over late-night drinks (particularly with several international visitors with whom we discussed differing approaches to making performance), we created wonderful connections and we saw, debated, dissected, argued, agreed on some excellent theatre. Highlights included The Encounter by Complicite, 887 by Robert Lepage, La Meute, Smoke and Mirrors by The Ricochet Project and taking time out to swim and sweat in Portobello’s Turkish baths (not fancy, but very effective)!

Summer Stage

We have just spent two weeks working with eleven brilliant young people from Salisbury creating and devising a piece of Theatre. We made a wonderful show foregrounding the voices of those young people, what matters to them, what frustrates them, what they hope for their future and what they feel it’s worth fighting for.

We started with a very blank canvas and we achieved collective magic in two weeks. We feel very proud to have played a part in these young people’s development and we hope their time with us has broaden not just their skills in theatre making but also what they think theatre can be and do.

Back in Edinburgh, back with BSL

We’re delighted to announced that our award-winning Near Gone will be back at Summerhall in this year’s festival. At 10pm, it makes a great way to finish your day at the Fringe between Tuesday 25th and Saturday 29th August. We are also very pleased that the performance on Thursday 27th will include integrated BSL interpretation, by Yvonne Strain.

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Feeling it

We’re just back from Poland, where Near Gone had its first surtitled performance. For a show that already deals with translation — of words and gestures and emotions — this extra layer felt like a risk. There were many sensitive conversations with the team at Teatromania, about meanings, about the placement of words in space, about the the timing of our spoken words and the written words. But how it would land with an audience — that was unknown.

It was great. From the stage, there was a little bit of a sense of watching tennis at some moments, as the audience would turn their heads in one choreographed movement to check a translation as it appeared, but the rhythm and energy of the piece was uninterrupted. The audience (more than sold out, they were standing in the aisles, and crouching at the front of the stage) were grabbed just as the organisers had promised they would be. Now, we’re looking forward to being able to try it again.

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The next performances are in Ireland, at Clonmel’s Junction Festival on 7th and 8th July – no surtitles required!

Before that, the first performance of LANDED brought lots of interesting conversations with audience members. People shared their stories of love – sometimes simple and sometimes complicated – and they shared their tears, the depth of their connection to the person who had shared a story with them inside our LANDED chambers…we’re really delighted to have worked with such great performers on the project, and we’re looking forward to discussions with more festivals about bringing the piece to more audiences. In the meantime, there’s another chance on 13th June to see the piece in Eastleigh.

At Tour’s End

We are just back from six weeks of touring Near Gone visiting people from Constantine in Cornwall to Eden Court in Inverness. We come back exhilarated by the experience and how the work was received. We have cried and laughed and so have our audiences. We have danced our feet off and we have given 3600 white carnations away (after dancing with them of course)!

For now though, we hang our costumes, with hopes that Alister’s shirt and Kat’s shoes will indeed get replaced. Next up, we will be flinging our flowers in Europe. Watch this space!

Developments

We’re delighted to have been awarded an Arts Council England grant to assist with artistic and organisational development. It means that this year, we’re able to look further at international relationships, building networks beyond our home country for investing in our work and showing it. Not only that, but we’ve got a little time to visit some international festivals to see the work made by exciting companies we wouldn’t otherwise encounter.

At the same time, we’re looking at how our company is constituted, recruiting board members from outside the arts to give us broader perspectives and ideas.

This is a really exciting project from which we’ll emerge stronger, with more diverse artistic ideas and networks, and a more robust oversight of our work. The Two Destination Language family will be getting larger, and we’re starting with a producer for one of our projects.

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