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Jun. 30th 2016

'Without an amazing crew like them, we would be unable to tell our story right.'

By Tunji Falana

When creating an outdoor show of any kind be it conventional theatre or physical theatre or a show on a loop for 8hrs that involves climbing down a 7m high structure, you always plan for a wet weather version. That is a version that should in case its drizzling, we do x y and z take it easy etc. Well the version for when its really bucketing it is just no show. This is what we were greeted with for our first show of Emerge/ncy at Brighton on the 28th May 2016, a bank holiday weekend. I know its silly but often I equate bank holiday to sunny day, but the weather/nature doesn't care what I think. So the show was delayed for 3hrs on the first day.

 

 

We began the show, it’s great, the audience is with us but with caution as the grass is wet from heavy rain and no one really wants to stand let alone sit in puddles.  As performers we braved our condition through slips and slides, I myself had a big fall/slide, but used it in the action as I was struggling to stay on a boat.

 

 

After my slip and fall, I couldn't help but wonder if that was a real boat. Then I started to think about those who have/had risked it all for a better life, perhaps did fall off a boat at some point and struggled to climb back on board. Some I presume made it back on and others didn't. I no longer felt sorry for myself but rather glad that we are able to give a minuscule representation or idea of what it would be like to flee ones home and go through such horrid condition in order to have a chance and a safer life.

The second day, we were off to a great start, the weather was great. Yes! A proper bank holiday, families were out, picnics, children running wild. Oh yes children!! They became our traveling audience who followed us back and forth, asking questions, making sense of the story, which was beautiful. The only thing is we really couldn't answer them with coherent language, stay true to the character and all. Nonetheless, the children made of it what they wanted and joined (although sometimes in the way) when they wanted. At some point I was beginning to think we were babysitters as parents watched their children dive into the deep end.

 

All in all we ended on a high, with the wind doing its part to make its presence know via props and costumes. All the performers did extra ordinarily well, our Directors needless to say are always brilliant. I’d like to give a big shout out to our crew especially Luke Gledsdale, Abbi Dawson and Jenny Kassner, for taking care of us, setting resetting, figuring and execution solutions to problems. From rehearsals to performance, without an amazing crew like them, we would be unable to tell our story right.

 

We aren’t done yet; next stop Woolwich 2nd July. Come one come all.

 

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