A busy weekend of rehearsing (on Saturday March 28th, in the Canongate) and performing (on Sunday 29th), followed by tea and debrief round a circular table. There is a group 'selfie' yet to be shared.
Michael Williams and Playback Edinburgh (with four actors, this time) and musicians, Pat Lambdin and Lynne O’Hare Sampsell, again worked well together at St Augustine's Church.
We are already invited back for next year's Festival and hope that Pat and Lynne will decide to formally join the company as our regular musicians.
Since our last posting, much has been happening (but the bloggers have been travelling instead of updating the news here).
The performance at the Storytelling Centre (see below) went down well, the audience were brilliant and our work earned us an opportunity to work again with Michael Williams. in March. Check out the events on the MESP festival website - we performed on the 8th and will be in action again on 29th March.
In January, we played back stories with the Dalmatians. And the session at the St Augustine Church on 8th March went well, even though we only had two actors, Susan and Kate. Well done them! Here are some fascinating reflections on that event from Michael, who by all accounts did a great job of warming up the participants - performers and story-tellers.
Sharing a story with the Edinburgh Playback Theatre troupe was a lesson in ‘letting go’. What would they do with my story once I told it? Would they understand my feelings or what the event meant to me?
However, once I released my story (a story from my childhood) the Playback performers and musicians breathed it into life through their art. I confess I felt some exhilaration as my story became a piece of theatre. The performers' movements, gestures, and vocalisations (complemented by the musicians’ improvised guitar and percussion) were sensitive and compassionate. I saw aspects of my story from different angles, like a cubist painting. Their interpretation allowed me to experience my story with some distance, giving me objectivity, inviting me to look and listen from a different perspective. The rhythm of the music and the performers’ movements lifted my heart and spirit.
In the capable hands of the Playback Theatre, my mundane story of childhood was transformed into a meaningful work of art with more universal appeal. It was as if the performers had tapped into the more primal or archetypal qualities of the story. I felt as if the audience and I were in the presence of some sort of Greek theatre or ancient ritual practice or celebration.
If you haven’t experienced Playback Theatre before, I urge you to learn more and take up the opportunity to participate in what is an unique story-making and community-building activity. The interaction between the audience and the performers create a truly transformative experience that you won’t soon forget.
Come and see us at the Scottish Storytelling Centre in the High Street this coming Thursday evening - 16th October, starting at 7pm. We're working alongside Michael Williams and other storytellers to support Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival. Click on the image to go to the booking page or you'll probably be safe to just turn up. Admission £5.
Saturday rehearsals working together to understand the purposes of different forms and their place in performance.
But where is the picture of scones and cakes?
Six of us met on a sunny Saturday. Serious fun.
Cake is one of our core principles but some deep work is fuelled by this deliciousness.
Juliana and Jackie joined a workshop in Newcastle facilitated by a young Russian - they brought back some ideas and these photos.
Kate, Jo and Gary enjoyed the journey there and back as much as the arriving and being there, joining in, with a lively group of play backers from around the globe.
These seem to be the only two pictures we have of our training with Davina at Craigmillar Arts Centre. How can that be?
The photos show two of the company experimenting with the use of cloth.
It was an interesting location - lots of art work and 'stuff' around the place.