On the 7th of July, Why Must I Be So Black and Blue took to the stage at Chapter Arts Centre! It was amazing!
The show combined choreography from 2 of Sam Boardman-Jacobs previous shows, Street of Crocodiles and the Pain show. The thing I loved about this process was discovering how the same choreography from a show I had done only 2 weeks prior, could feel so different once a new narrative had been found. I found it fascinating the ways we could make material feel new and fresh and deliver a totally different story. Where in Street Of Crocodiles my narratives were found in relation to Bruno Schulz and his mother and my part to play in his story as well as the bigger picture of what was going on in the Second World War. This time my narrative related to people within the more recent sieges of Sarajevo and other turmoil going on in the world at this time, with regards to Greece especially. The idea of this narrative was “A Body in Pain is like a City under Siege”. We thought not only about specific incidents of the past but also what leaders are putting their people through today, which drew me to creating my narrative based around the hideous events that are happening in Zimbabwe!
The whole piece felt new. The dynamics of the ensemble we had this time was completely different than in Street of Crocodiles. Going from 20 performers to just 8 brought the whole scale of the thing to a different level. It seemed more personal and closer but the energy that radiated on stage during the rehearsals and performances was stronger than ever! The relationships I formed with that brilliant group of performers was incredible. Artistically, creatively, socially, we all found a bond that (eventually) we were able to bring to the stage for the performance. We, narratively and performatively, got each other through the events of the show which to me was a stronger connection then when there were 20 of us.
The final night was hard. We had all worked so hard for the last three nights and maybe something was last on the way. At one point during the performance I thought to myself, “Where’s the connection? We don’t seem to have it tonight…”. I felt as though it was probably my worst night. The feedback was incredible. I was told I was at my best. I realised that while I was performing I was not trying to be the best I could be. I was not trying to perform well, I just got lost in it, and so when I came off stage I felt as though I hadn’t done enough. In fact, I had mastered exactly what Sam had been asking of me the whole time - Just live in the moment. Discover new things. Just be. That is a sensation I will hold with me for the rest of my life.
Following the successful run of Found Reality’s show “Street of Crocodiles” @ ATRiuM, Cardiff, a selected ensemble group is now in the process of devising/creating a new performance piece, called “Why must I be so Black and Blue”, reprising the theme of PAIN, previously explored by the company in “Cabaret of Pain”, and reworking it to the theme:
“A body in pain is like a city under siege…”
With Abbie Hendy, Abi Haase, Asha Cecil, Ashleigh Bull, Claudio Laurini, Robbie Hilton, Sarah Harvey and Theo Maggs.