A workshop in partnership with Fusion Theatre Company.
JANUARY 2019- LONDON, UK
Our first workshop for The Medusa Project is complete!
We gathered for this workshop at Middlesex University, where all of our physical and technical needs were met by the incredible drama program there. We spent a lot of time building foundations for and exploring the practices of Butoh, Suzuki, and The Viewpoints under the instruction of Earl T. Kim.
Our ensemble consisted of London based artists including Nell Hardy, Eliza Harris, Saida Ahmed, Hannah Allen, Gabrielle De Saumarez, Katarina Kikta, Aniera Evans, and Nicole McKay.
Over the course of our workshop time, we generated abstract performances and movement sequences focusing on Medusa’s story through the lens of Transformation. In which moments was Medusa transformed - voluntarily or against her will? How does isolation transform women in power? How do our experiences of trauma and violence transform how we process and interact with stimulation from our environments?
We also began then first attempts at integrating access design into our process. This included thinking intentionally about how what we were generating would be experienced by people from different experiences, and how to develop Accessible content that is present in every performance of a piece, rather than specifically assigned dates for those who would seek out those services. Over the course of our collaboration with the tireless Anna Donnell, we were able to share a performance that was equipped with open captioning, integrated audio description, and a visual story and accessibility guide provided to all guests before the day of the performance.
Both the ensemble and the facilitators brought their best selves to the room. Everyone was generous, hard working, curious, creative, and willing to ask difficult questions. We demanded a lot of one another, and each individual rose to the occasion. We learned quite a lot about how each of the facilitators leads a room, how to take care of the needs of the performers, questions and resources we need to be thinking of earlier in the process, and how to share the creative burden of devised work in a way that is sustainable, driven, and malleable.
The facilitators are now hard at work, adjusting our plans based on what we’ve learned, and setting ourselves new challenges for our next workshop in Paris, France.