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THE DRAWING BOARD Compiled by Lewys Holt, Katherine Hall, Daniel Nicholas and Jack Britton

Design Libby Sidebotham

Contact tetradcompany@gmail.com www.tetradcollective.com

Š Tetrad Collective 2016. No part of this publication may be reproduced in whole or in part without permission from Tetrad Collective. The views expressed in The Drawing Board are those of the respective contributors and are not necessarily shared by Tetrad Collective.

Supported by


The Drawing Board is often seen as something we return to, which inherently implies this must be a place to depart from. It can be given a bit of a bad rep — “The drawing board” cast in a negative cartoonish light. Take that classic Loony Toons scene for example. ‘Oh goody’ Marvin the Martian states picking up a fizzling stick of dynamite. ‘My Imodium Q 36 explosive space modulator’, as it comically blows up in his face. ‘Well back to the old drawing board’, he dizzily fumbles for words as his floating laboratory collapses around him. In this booklet we are exploring The Drawing Board as a point of departure rather than a point of return. We’re diving head first into the blank canvas, we’re stood right in the centre of square one and we’re on the tentative edge of that first step. We are Tetrad, a Midlands based collective dedicated to the evolution of contemporary performance as well as the discussions around it. We created The Drawing Board as a collection of artists practices who are sharing their experiences of beginning. This is not a manual, or a guide to kicking of the perfect performative ideas, it’s more of a messy laboratory, here to encourage your exploration and experimentation. What follows is a collection of articles, texts and musings from ourselves, artists and people we value in the industry. They all contemplate those early strides into the unknown ocean that is creating something. We are Marvin’s tingling excitement, his cautious optimism and his trepidation as he first conceives of the ‘Imodium Q 36 explosive space modulator’. We are Marvin, as he picks up his pencil. tetrad 2016

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CONTENTS

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Wr i t e i t d ow n ! JA C K B R I T TO N

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Two i m p rov i s e d texts ELISE NUDING

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Bl o g JA M E S M OR G A N

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How to d i s t ra c t yo u r s e lf from c re a t i n g a p e r f o r m an ce D A N I E L N I C H OL A S

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C o n s t r u c ti n g p e r f o r man ce: Mi s s i n g Sc rew s R O S I E G A R TON A N D I L D I KO R IPPE L

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M Y R E S OU R C E S , w h e re are th ey ? KAT H E R I N E H A L L

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A re c i p e f o r p e r f o r man ce ( a n d r i s o tto ) M AT T WAT T S

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A l l I h a ve t o d o i s start L E W Y S H OLT

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You wo n’t b e l i eve th e s e 8 reason s why p o p u l i s t tra s h i s t h e h igh est f o r m o f m o d e r n art C O N WAY M C D E R M OT T

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Do o r s i n th e wa l l : A diary for a r t, l i f e & p s i l o c ybin A . D OU B L E YO U

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Wo r k i n g i n c i rc l es A C ON V E R S AT I ON W I T H O U R F R IE NDS

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C o n tr i b u t o r s

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WRITE IT DOWN! Jac k A .G. Bri t t on _

For me, the good ideas bubble under the surface for weeks before eventually I go ‘Oh yeah, I can do something with this’. I hold an attitude of ‘I might make a show about’ or ‘I’ve been considering working on something to do with’ for a fair while before eventually I commit to an idea. There’s no eureka ‘BY JOVE I’VE GOT IT’ moment its more of a:

‘this?…This?…….hmmm this? ….Nah but this?…..oh…this…. yeah no this…This…..THIS!’ My ‘EUREKA’ moments are more a succession of miniature explosions, lights being switched on in a dark corridor flickering gradually into life one by one. However, I need to get to the point really, this article is more about the way I don’t approach new ideas. I do like many creatives pop a little note in my phone when I think ‘Ooh that could be neat’ and then what do I do? Do I systematically go through all these notes at a later date separating the wheat from the chaff and beefing out these ideas to gain a better understanding of what they could become? Do I fuck. I’m not that organised.

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BUT THAT’S WHAT I’M GONNA DO NOW! And maybe after reading this you’ll be inspired to do the same. So I’ve selected a few ‘Notes’ pages from my phone to display here and ‘discuss’ or ‘attempt to desperately to make sense of’. First we need to address the grammatical elephant in the room. Surely ‘All of the screens in my house’ is what I meant. Secondly we should probably disregard ‘Snarky Puppy’ as irrelevant, this is a band I wanted to check out, they do a cool remix of…IRRELEVANT MOVING ON! ‘All of the screens in my house’ that’s a grand total of 17 screens. A mixture of laptops, phones and other devices 6 of which are actually used or not broken. The idea here was to gather all the screens in one place, have them all switched on possibly displaying a message that states

‘17. How many screens are in your house?’ tetrad 2016

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I’d take a photo of this and post it online encouraging others to do the same.

Why?

Why?

Why?

But seriously why? Well maybe its a comment on consumerism, maybe it’s a statement about our reliance on technology these days, or maybe its a chance for me to do a car boot sale and shamelessly squeeze some art out of it. Ok, once again lets start by addressing any grammatical or spelling errors here. I don’t actually mean ‘Eli’ I mean ‘ELO’ or ‘Electric Light Orchestra’. You know. ‘Don’t bring me doooowwwn Groos!’ WHAT DOES ‘GROOS’ EVEN MEAN!? Anyway, that doesn’t matter, whilst a documentary piece of journalistic theatre about the use of the term ‘Groos’, it’s origins and meaning in this song would be fascinating that’s not the idea at play here. The idea is, essentially, about a mixtape, or mix CD to be more accurate. Let me explain.

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My Mum had a partner for a while when me and my sister were growing up, I’d have been about 9 — 12 at the time, and during this time, obligatory family holidays to Cornwall would take place every summer, as well as trips to see family and old friends. I feel like everyone has those albums that got rinsed on long family car journey’s, for me it was Alanis Morisette, Finley Quaye, Gomez and this Mix CD put together by my Mum’s aforementioned partner.

1. Don’t Bring Me Down: Electric Light Orchestra

2. Hotel California: The Eagles

3. Champagne Supernova: Oasis

4. Can’t Buy Me Love: The Beatles

5. I Wanna Hold Your Hand: The Beatles

6. American Woman: Lenny Kravitz

Now I have somewhat of a limited memory of what was actually on this CD, the list above contains all the songs I remember, I’m pretty sure there were more than 6. This is certainly just a starting point, how this can be applied to performance I’m not sure, is it the story of filling in the blanks of this playlist, whilst recapturing stories from my childhood at this time? Do I perform covers of the songs throughout the show? The more I write about this one, the more it intrigues me, maybe this is a work about music and how it punctuates periods of our lives; desert Island disks meets a coming of age story. Who knows, but there could be something to play with here.

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3. ‘I Finish My Panini’

My final note chosen for this exercise is of a very different species to the prior two. This isn’t a random scrawling to remind me of some vague idea I had. This is something a little more crafted. In devising performance, workshops or rehearsals a lot of free writing is used, I guess this is an example of that. At the time of its creation I was killing time in a Costa Coffee before a meeting in Derby, I was reading David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest at the time and the idea of teasing out excessive, sometimes dramatic detail from mundane situations must have been playing on my mind. How I use the above text remains to be seen, it’s there for the taking though, if the need ever arises. I suppose I’ll wrap up my intro and let it speak for itself.

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I’m not going to finish this article with a cursory ‘In conclusion…’ I’m going to finish with a set of instructions for any fellow smartphone note takers.

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Remove phone from pocket/bag

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Unlock phone

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Go to ‘Notes’ app

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Close your eyes

5. Perform about three or four thumb scroll motions 6. Tap on a ‘Note’ page to open a random one (no peeking) 7. Read the entire note 8.

Decide whether or not to delete it

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Act accordingly

10. Open up a new note justifying why you did or didn’t delete this note.

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TWO IMPROVISED TEXTS Elis e Nud i ng _

A text in response to and as an extension of/complement to an improvisation practice that has, in the recent months, been the mainstay of my dance practice Where to begin? I remember being told that Merce Cunningham always started his classes with the phrase, ‘let’s begin again.’ (This was when he was alive, and still teaching classes in New York). ((At the Merce Cunningham Studios, where, incidentally, I have performed. And Mikhail Baryshnikov was in the audience, but that was because his daughter perform was performing in the work we presented, rather than due to any particular characteristics, merits, or other distinguishing factors of the work. By the way, it was not my work; I was just performing.)) But I think about that phrase of Merce Cunningham’s a lot. Let’s begin again. Ok, so this is a text in response to my improvisation practice. Dance practice. And because I lack ima lack imagination — no, wait, that’s not true. I lack many things, but imagination is not one of them. Luckily.

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But who said this text had to contain only true things? Or any true things, for that matter? (But the thing about Merce Cunningham is true, I promise). Would it make it less valuable if it wasn’t true? If he never said that? I suppose he might not have. But it is true that someone told me that he said that at the start of his classes. And maybe it would be just as valuable — or more so?— if it wasn’t true, but as it just so happens it is true. That someone told me he said it, that is. But to return to what I started to explain, in regards to this text relating to my improvisation practice… [sometimes you need pauses; in fact, more often than not we are tempted to do too much. It’s a cliché (actually it’s a slogan from the Modernist movement), but often less is more]. So now I will take a pause. […] Ok, I am ready to continue now. I counted to 10 before I picked up my pen again. It was quite a slow count, by the way — just in case you are worried about the possibility that I might be fatigued. Timing is very important whe in improvising. So is the ability to stop and start things. The You do not always have to follow things through to their end. You do not always s have to —

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(This applies to sentences as well as movements — something that in I indulge in when speaking. But somehow I always feel the need to wrestle a sentence down to the ground — that is, to its end. But perhaps I should begin again.

(After all, isn’t a beginning what comes after an end?)

((Now that I proposed that as an assumption, I’m not so sure that it’s true)).

But I was trying to say something about the relationship of this text to my improvisation dance practice. Which is exactly that — I need to qualify the phrase “improvisation practice” with the word “dance.” That is to say, in other words, meaning that for me “dance” is implicit when I say “improvisation practice.” But what I’m really trying to say is that of course there can also be such a thing as an improvised writing practice. And I do it all the time. Which is what I wanted to say in the first place: that this is a text in response to/in complement to my practice of dance improvisation, and the way it relates to that practice is that it too is improvised. There, I’ve said it. Which leaves me needing to begin again.

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An improvised text attempting to get a grip on some of the questions accidentally posed by the previous text To begin again — to start after stopping (for how long?) (how long did you stop for? Because this shapes the beginning.) Starting from nothing when it is actually something. It just feels as if there is not enough to start— — to generate an impetus, momentum, movement. To begin (again) is to move. (Perhaps). It takes energy. Effort. Labour. Maybe it would have been easier to never have stopped…but this too takes up energy. Energy which runs down and out. So we must stop in order to start anew, afresh. Beginning again. This is the beginning (again). And again. But it is also a continuation, where starting anew is really only carrying on and on, just with a

Perhaps. A drawing out of the time involved in a process of continual doing, where abstract, arbitrary boundaries bookend endeavours, eras, things. And define them.

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Delineating and deciding where one thing ends and another begins. Oftentimes someone’s beginning is also a middle, or an end. Or an inbetween. In between the beginning and the end there is — A beginning again that repeats but is also new. Similar but different. Familiar in its reappearance but unfamiliar by definition of its new beginning. Unless we are talking in circles, where snakes end up eating their own tails. Where we inscribe over existing layers, saying the same things. (but differently?) ((If it is the same thing, differently, is it the same?)) Always, the question remains: Have we been here before? And if we have been here before, then what does it mean to retrace these steps, following known pathways, yet finding something(s) different. Here, we stop to wonder, starting to wander. Beginning again to see where we are and where we have been. Beginning again to draw out something — not from nothing but from something else. Or maybe we begin again to scratch that, do it again. somet (something wasn’t right). This is a denial, a reversal, a backtrack. Start again. Throw it out. No good. A desire to erase through rejecting. When really we only stop, pause, and… … Well, if we’ve stopped, then at some point things must start again.

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BLOG James Morgan _

Written during the ongoing process of making

‘DRAG ON’ >

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> SUNDAY  19th June

Performance pieces I have the urge to make, but probably won’t: A solo where I perform as a drag-dragon hybrid, and chat about the similarities between dragons and drag queens, and the idea of ‘realness’. With massive extendable wings. An immersive murder mystery dance theatre performance. There’s no performers, just a very large, elaborate set. The audience can’t leave until they’ve worked out which of them is the choreographer. Something genuinely really scary. A dance that looks like the overwhelming exhaustion you feel when you hear about another shitty thing happening in the world.  piece where none of the time A spent making it should be considered ‘work’ — it is to be made only at my leisure and should never involve ‘labour’ in the broadest sense.

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No to strenuous physical activity or thinking too hard.  rant about people saying A ‘interpretive dance’. It’s stupid and it doesn’t exist.  thespian reading of the Chilcott A report, with inflatable Tony Blair (I’m pretty sure I thought of this before it went to the fringe).  choreography of fruits and A vegetables, made with stop motion animation.  choreographed list of A choreographies. Inspired by the Wiki page: Lists of lists of lists.  ne Direction erotic fanfiction, O performed by a cast of 40.  lipsync of the entire BBC2 live A referendum public debate, whilst hammering nails through my scrotum.


A piece where the only aim is to make sure that my parents like it. ‘Intermission 2’ — the sequel to a piece I made in the third year of my degree. It had a dancing, eightlegged, gold pantomime horse, which in retrospect was probably the peak of my career. A piece made from bits of all the pieces I’ve seen and loved, but altered and re-contextualised so that you can’t really tell who I’m copying.  piece where the audience text-in A what they want to happen next, which is relayed to a projection on the back wall of the stage. The performers respond live to their suggestions, but we will have spent a lot of time in the studio trying to guess what the audience will suggest, and try to come up with highly choreographed, witty, and improbable responses. The

audience will think we’re improvising, and we sort of will be. And it will reveal something about democracy… (Tim Casson’s actually doing something similar to this) The accelerationist manifesto, on ice. S omething politically engaged without being preachy. Which acknowledges the world is complicated and probably can’t be explained or fixed by with a performance. But it does what it can, achieving a balance between bitter irony and solemn earnestness, never stopping to check if the audience have been left behind.  piece made of a series of endings. A And despite the fact that the audience quickly work out what is happening, they somehow keep forgetting and believing it’s over and trying to get up to leave. >

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> MONDAY  20th June

I often try to assert to myself that good work is stumbled across — it’s usually not the thing you set out to make and arises organically out of the right conditions, a physical rigour and the spirit of play. I’m sure I’ve been told this a thousand times — particularly in my training. Those thoughts seem to linger and I find myself turning my nose up at the idea of ideas: “less talking, more doing”. And yet, at the moment I seem to spend more time writing about work than actually making it. I’m aware this is a pretty common complaint, but I wonder at what point my practice becomes ‘idea-making’ as opposed to dance/performance making? And does that mean I’m doomed to fail, or should I just shift the goalposts and be ok with being an idea-maker? I feel like I can see the effects of idea-driven thinking on my time in the studio. I try to do the open research thing, but it doesn’t seem to work well for me. Typically things only go well if I arrive with a pretty fullyformed idea of what I’m going to make. Maybe that’s just because I’m working solo. I feel like I have a pretty clear idea about collaborative models of making, but I’ve recently fallen into solo performance and am slowly realising I have absolutely no clue how it is done. I’d love to meet someone who, alone, is able to cultivate a playful, rigorous, fulfilling studio practice in which material simply emerges. Of course I can do all of the right things to help facilitate a better working environment — film myself, invite outside eyes, go to morning class beforehand, but generally it is a pretty isolating place to be... >

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> FRIDAY  24th June

...Before today I’d had the chrysalis of an idea sitting, pretty-much dormant, in my mind for about nine months. I didn’t start making, I guess, for all the usual neurotic, confused, artist reasons — fear of failure; the wrong conditions; no space/time; lack of a deadline. But when the right moment presented itself, it felt like all I had to do was take this thing out of its cellophane wrapper. It was basically already formed. Maybe I should stay out of the studio until I’m ready, and shut up complaining. >

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> MONDAY  15th August

Now I have seven days of studio space to try and work out if this little nugget of a piece wants to become something more fully-formed. Wish me luck. >

> TUESDAY  16th August

...searching for MA courses; thanking people on Facebook for suggesting interesting articles (I haven’t read them yet); moving around pieces of furniture; sending text messages to make sure that everything’s ready for dinner tonight; googling words to check I understand them; organising tabs; organising google drive documents; picking bits of skin from around my fingernails; talking to other people about ‘process’ over the artist’s breakfast and lingering when people start to leave; filling up my water bottle; planning what I’ll do this afternoon; lists; lunch; the time taken to move between tasks; writing blog entries; reading an article about a baby born at 17,000ft on a plane — they gave her 1 million air miles; thinking about better ways to record connected ideas (than a spider diagram) — I find limiting the notion that everything should connect to a singular nucleus; trying out online mind-map software; worrying I’m wasting time, abandoning it, and going back to paper; considering my own distraction and trying to work out whether it is productive or destructive; googling “is it ‘which’ or ‘that’?”; more reading; 20 minutes dancing... >

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>

W  EDNESDAY 15th August

Perhaps proximity is more important than connectedness. I thought about this yesterday when I was trying to make a mind map. I realised that the connections between my research subjects and thoughts were so multifarious than I couldn’t possibly make coherent sense out of them. The whole page was covered in lines. Connecting but also dividing. Everything seems way more clear when I blurt out loud a stream of consciousness to another person than when I try to get my thoughts down on paper. And I keep hearing a voice in my head over and over that the ideas I’m working with cannot possibly be translated into movement, as if these were two languages, directly compatible — if only I could find my text-to-dance dictionary. No. There is knowledge in the body and by placing things in proximity and squaring up to the ideas, there will be clarity in what I am doing. So they say. Or maybe clarity isn’t the word I’m looking for. This is performance, not an MA thesis. So I danced for 15 minutes (it seemed like 30), to very loud, industrial techno music with the audio of a keynote speech I was watching earlier over the top. And I felt better. >

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> FRIDAY 19th August

Today is day five. I decided to invite some people to the studio three days this week for an ‘alternative morning class’ (I stole the idea from Jamila). The idea was that when they left I’d be able to roll with the momentum. It hasn’t exactly worked out like that, but it has been a great excuse to dance with other people. This is a task we tried, which I stole from Lois Weaver. She calls it ‘porch-sitting’. I found a way to add in some movement, but that part isn’t necessary: There should be as many chairs as people. Everyone sits facing the same direction in a cluster. If there is a window in the room, you could sit facing it. Any person can speak at any time, but the speaking needn’t follow a logical conversation — there can be long pauses. It might be helpful to have a sentence starter to begin with, like “I wonder”, or “In the future”, or something which might steer the conversation towards your particular enquiry that day. This can be dropped over time. The idea is that you are watching the world go by, as if you were sitting on a porch, absentmindedly observing whatever is in front of you. One person can move in the space in front of the sitters, but they needn’t worry about trying to be interesting. At any time they can decide to sit down and someone else replaces them. Its nice to do this at the end of a session, as a reflective task.>

> S ATURDAY 20th August

I’ve found something. And by that I mean my boyfriend suggested something whilst we were chatting at home, when I was supposed to be at the studio. I’ll skive more often.>

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> FRIDAY 2nd September

Making work is like being regurgitated, very slowly, by a large animal. [

]

At first it’s very dark, you feel damp. It’s not clear which way is the front, or top, or exit. It’s quiet except for the sound of your own heavy breathing. You look around and in every direction is the same, smooth, semi-reflective wall. Slowly the surfaces around you start to move, sliding over and across each other. They rise up and press against you. It gets very oozy for a bit and you seem to be s upwards as things get a little warmer and maybe brighter. Everything stops. There is a low rumble from beneath you and the pressure drops. A force rolls from your feet to your head and you are pushed out of the end of a long tunnel. Everything is very bright and when your vision comes into focus, staring back at you is the face of a massive dragon. It’s reassuring to know what you had been inside this whole time, not that it really looks anything like the dragons on tv. It’s also pretty overwhelming, so you nudge its mouth open, take a gulp of air and climb back inside. >

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>

SATURDAY 3rd September

No actually, that feels way too passive. It’s more like you’re trying to throw something up that’s a bit too big for your throat.

_

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HOW TO DISTRACT YOURSELF FROM CREATING A PERFORMANCE Dani e l Ni cho l a s _

You’ve got this big idea. It’s going to be great; people are going to love the show that you’ll have finished researching and developing from a year now. The potential of its themes seem endless, it’ll have emotive biographical content, scathing political satire, hilarious physical gestures, some movement that really pushes yours (and the audiences’) endurances. It’s almost definitely going to receive critical acclaim and sell out events; this is going to be the show that makes your career. Well done, you’ve just done the first step towards creating your performance, daydream till your heart’s content. Now let’s go and make it... First off shower. You’ve got to wash away all other thoughts, you need to be completely clean from distraction and conditioner is known for improving brain power. Next up find the right location. The right location will have good coffee, a great sound system for you to put on your new show playlist (we’ll get to that later), and people that you can bounce off of, or observe. If you’re a dancer or a performance maker then you’ll probably need a studio, or to move your furniture around in your living room (hey that could be part of the performance?!)

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Most of the work I make is either text based or improvised. As such I’ll go to a cafe to create. Cafes are great places for inspiration, there are people there to observe and engage with, and if you’re in a good cafe it’ll have great coffee and a vibrant sound system. If you are in a cafe without any of these things, it’s time to change location. It’s important to spend some time thinking about which cafe will help

T he right drink can really ensure your creative juices are flowing

you create most, is it the one that has the Atari in the corner? Is it the one which has a plethora of board games available? Is it the one where the Wi-Fi doesn’t work? Where ever it is, it should be somewhere that works for you. Now that you’re settled on a table, that’s hopefully big enough for six people, spread out all your notes across it, this is to give an indication to everyone, that you’re a busy artist about to go into a creative thunder storm. But before you can start, it’s important to make sure you’re hydrated, without being hydrated you will wither and die. The right drink can really ensure your creative juices are flowing. I nearly always get an Americano, or if it’s a particularly sunny day (even when it’s not sometimes) an iced Americano (with milk), however you may prefer to have a tea, or perhaps you’d like to reinforce your artist image. As such, I recommend an Americano on the rocks or a flat white. However if you have facial hair be careful, you may give off the impression that you’re a hipster. When you return to your table there is a possibility that someone might have sat there, politely explain to them that you’re an artist about to go through a

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creative thunderstorm (NB. Google synonyms for thunderstorm, before starting a conversation) and that they’re welcome to sit there but you’d like them to keep quiet, and not distract you. Then ask them about what they do? You never know it might come in useful, or at the very least it’s a chance to connect with others. We’re almost ready to start making! First off go over your schedule for the day to see how much time you can allot to making. It might also be worth noting the other important tasks that you need to get done that day, re-evaluate your schedule. It seems that there isn’t as much time as you had hoped to get things done right now, have a look at your weekly planner and see if there are any other instances where you can sit down and think. It might also be worth planning the rest of your month while you’re at it, although it might mean eating into more your time now, it will mean you have planned to allot time later. Nice one. A blank word document may seem daunting at first; this is easily resolved by bashing the keys and cackling manically. There, doesn’t look so unnerving now does it? You may get some looks for this action, that’s ok this just means people are looking at you and thinking ‘there is an artist about to go through a creative downpour. What a great person they are.’ Now that you have something written down (yes gengoiewjgoEWGOewgei is a start, don’t put yourself down, self-doubt is the worst enemy in any kind of creative cloudburst) it’s time to update your social media activity. Log in to Facebook and see what’s gwaning. Here in this echo chamber of your peers and other like-minded individuals, you will find out the latest news, gossip and short videos of cute dogs. Spend some time reading and updating yourself with the latest goings on — culture is everywhere and you will want to soak up as much as possible. Do this on regular intervals so you don’t miss a thing. This may have inspired some short term memory loss. It’s time to refocus on the task at hand, you’re going to create that award winning show remember?

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But what themes will it have? What points are you trying to put across? The best way to discover this will be to make your new show playlist. Search and scour Spotify (haven’t got Spotify? Download it— it’ll only take a moment!) for songs that you know and love, and ones that you don’t know or love, to compose a playlist that you think will articulately convey the emotion of your new show. Headphones aren’t necessary people will appreciate that you are a creative hard at work and will enjoy some behind the scenes action. I usually like to spend at least two hours on this, but you can spend longer if you wish. If you feel unequipped to make this playlist (i.e. you don’t know anything about your new show yet) then get lost in 90’s David Bowie albums; Earthling and 1. Outside are particularly good — whatever the critics said. So you’ve made your show playlist and have an idea of what kind of vibe the show is going to give off. It’s time to research that feeling by going onto the biggest and best research and resource site there is. Youtube. Here there are infinite possibilities of what you can watch, you can even contribute to the ongoing dialogue and comment on the videos (getting into debates is a healthy way of realizing how off beam most people are). By researching the emotions that you came up with from the show playlist, you can discover performances that have used that feeling as the main thrust of their piece, providing you with details on what your performance shouldn’t be like, as it’s already been done. And originality is everything. Of course this might also inspire some ideas that you may want to use. Nothing is completely original anymore. It’s good to write these ideas down, so you’re absolutely sure of what your performance won’t/will be like. If you’re struggling to know where you should start on YouTube, I recommend watching I’m Afraid of Americans by David Bowie. I’m pretty sure Trent Reznor is in it. Now you know the emotive feel for your new show, and have a list of ideas of things you should/shouldn’t do, you’ll probably find that your drink is almost

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gone. It’s wise to buy another, Cafes are increasingly becoming aware of people who come in and only buy one drink and then use their free Wi-Fi all day (based on experiences) it’s better to order something else to keep up appearances. If this is the case perhaps it’s time you had some food also, you must be feeling hungry by now, if you’ve followed this article step by step since you woke up then you haven’t eaten. Does the cafe you’re in serve food? If not perhaps your choice of location is wrong. Spend some time agonizing over the menu, food will help energise your brain and make you even more productive. It’s vital you pick something that will enable this to happen, I usually ask everyone for their recommendations and then ignore them and choose the chips.

Y  ou’ll probably find your drink is almost gone. It’s wise to buy another

Engage with the staff in some ‘light’ banter, if you come here and do this often you may get undeserved discount. Request for your new show playlist to be played over their sound system, it’s not a problem if they decline; failure is all part of the process. You’ve only got a limited amount of time before the food is served, it’s unrealistic to think you’re going to get anything productive done in this time frame, as such, accept it and use that time to engage with the latest news. You might be fairly liberal and already have The Guardian app on your Smartphone, perhaps lies are more your bag though, cafe’s usually stock newspapers so why not pick up a copy of The Sun, get a highlighter and go through and underline every lie and brainwa—oh the chips have arrived!

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Enjoy your food; you may not know when you will eat again. Now you are feeling nourished it’s time to crack down on making your amazing show. Review where you are at. By now hopefully we have thought about your soundtrack and what ideas not to do. The next step would be to type

R  elax and take the rest of the day off, there is always tomorrow

up and collate all the notes you have already made into a document, it’s vital you pick the right font, the wrong one could lead to you instantly discrediting the idea when you review it in the future. So you have your notes ready for future examination. What next? Perhaps it’s best to do a time check, still got time today? Great, imagine you’ve just finished the show and it’s had its premiere, journalists are gathered around, Lyn Gardner asks to interview you, you say yes a little bewildered at the fact that she was here at all, as you didn’t invite her. It’s good to think about what questions she’s likely to ask, here are a few sample questions to help you prepare for the interview with Lyn and others; What was the process like to make this show? (Remember to reference this article heavily) How do you feel having done the show? What would you say to the rumours around yourself and Kylie Minogue?

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These are only a sample of questions; you are welcome to think of more. Once you’ve thought of and answered as many questions as possible, it’s probably time you called it a day, you’ve worked hard and made some real progress, and you should be proud of what you’ve done. You’re on your way to making the most important show of the decade. So relax and take the rest of the day off, there is always tomorrow. Remember by no means are these the only tips on how to make your world-renowned show, you can also try using sleep to dream of new ideas, (remember to keep a pen and paper near where you are sleeping), Netflix provide a good source of constant cultural inspiration at your fingertips (might even be worth thinking of how your new performance can be adapted for it?) If you’re at home, the repeated action of ‘making a brew’ can be quite stimulating for the brain. And then of course there is staring into space thinking about your isolated existence and the inevitable death and destruction that the human race will ultimately cause on itself. Of course not all of these will work for you, and it’s important to experiment and find what it is that does work best for you, in doing so you may find some methods that aren’t highlighted in this article. If that’s the case why not share them with us? Good luck in making the most important thing to have ever have happened to the arts, and don’t forget to reserve me a ticket for the opening night.

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CONSTRUCTING PERFORMANCE: MISSING SCREWS Ros ie G a rt o n a n d Il d i ko Ri p p e l _

Doing.It.Yourself. A while ago I passed a billboard poster proclaiming: “We will come and do your D.I.Y. for you!” And in moments of stillness, this advertisement reappears, uninvited, in my brain, and I consider the confusing proposal of hiring someone else to do Do It Yourself. My house is in a constant flux of D.I.Y. projects at various stages, a growing condition over the eight years I have lived there. These projects generally fall into three categories: 1. Completed (but not quite to specifications) 2. Not-quite-completed (but getting used to) 3. To-be-started at some-point-soon Predominantly my D.I.Y. determination is driven by the desire to both prove my womanhood and to save money. But as someone who learns on the job, I have also identified an attraction to the exhilarating and demoralising experience of un-planned construction. This weekend I charged up my drill and began to work on a project in Category 3: To-be-started-at-some-point-soon. There are many items on this To Do list — shelves for kids room, tiles for bathroom floor… — marked around the house by pencil scratchings and droppings of screws, like evidence of a little D.I.Y. rodent resident.

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Meanwhile: Ildiko and I are in the midst of creating No Woman’s Land. There is a clear sense of labour in this particular devising process; we are struggling. We think we are half way through the build, and then we de-construct it and start again, and re-build at a different angle. Right now: in my front garden, I am building a shed and I am pondering all the performances we have made over the last fifteen years, and placing them into my three D.I.Y. categories. And it is pleasing to find I can order them in this way, just as I have the assorted screws into groupings of size infront of me.

Paving pacing panting Scraps of paper with heavy black scrawled headings on, such as Mann o Mann and Sausage Song, are laid like stepping-stones across the front of our rehearsal space. Last week there were ten pieces of paper; now there are about twelve. (This growth does not signify progression). During our making process, when an idea makes its way from chat to play, we name it and place it down — just somewhere — among the others. At this moment, we are staring down at this cobbled paper pathway, using our toes to drag some of these headings down into a sub-line of not-sure-if that-fits. In a sudden heightened burst of enlightenment, one of us will drop to our knees, and move a paper stone to another position in the queue. There are a series of guttural reactionary noises of agreement/uncertainty as we reach a consensus of whether or not we played the right move. After a time of thinking noises and weighted pauses, we remind ourselves that we have not used cement, that these stones are just in fact bits of paper dropped on a dance floor. They are movable, they can sit on top of each other, underneath each other; they can be cut in half, re-ordered, put aside. We have the ground plans for this piece; it is about walking, about the walk of Ildiko’s grandmother, about our re-tracing of that walk and about the images of walking refugees flooding the news. From early conception we wanted to use treadmills,

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machines that would insist on a fluidity of pace and endurance. And here they stand now, two treadmills in the space, the humming conveyor belts delivering an insolent rehearsal soundtrack. These masculine objects beckon us like sirens, and without discussion we find ourselves riding their backs, and it is in the heart of this monotonous kinesthesia that we find our feet. And here we are now, having gravitated towards the treadmills. Pacing, pacing, pacing, going nowhere. And thinking. We are wearing beards, trousers, braces, waistcoats, tailcoats. We are thinking about the women entertaining their audiences in the darkened Kabarett rooms of Berlin and Munich, steeped in an orgy of political arousal, as they shed their socially gendered positions. We are thinking about Marlene Dietrich in her trouser suit, singing to the American troops during the war to boost morale.

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I don’t know who initiates it, but we are now running. Out of breath and hot. And as is the nature of running on a treadmill, we have no destination. After some time, through panted breath, I ask: ‘Ildiko — is this entertainment?’ It’s a genuine concern. She seems to have picked up her pace. ‘Rosie, this is entertainment’ she assures me. She is definitely going faster than me; I competitively bleep my way up the speed buttons. ‘What about this?’ I holler as I wave my arms around frantically: ‘is this entertainment?’ I am grasping at straws, and nearly falling off. She makes an encouraging noise, and bleeps up two more speed notches. ‘What about this?’ she cries as she does some impressive time-step footwork on the speeding conveyor belt; ‘is this entertainment?’ Yeah, it is. And she knows it. What’s my next move? I rapidly open my waistcoat, fling it to the floor, pull down my braces so they hang down to my knees, undo the top two buttons of my shirt and whisk it off. I am running harder now, breathless in my bra and trousers, raising my voice in desperation to our imagined audience, ‘what about this? Is this entertainment, am I entertaining you?’ Ildiko is hot on my heels, and is shouting, ‘IS — THIS — ENTERTAINMENT?’ I look across to catch her ripping at her shirt so fiercely one of the buttons has Frisbee-d across the space, she is bra-less and laughing at her breasts bobbing up and down as she runs. Now that is entertainment. We run together, laughing, on the edge of hysteria, then in silence. Our verbal hush is underlined with our heavy breathing and the persistent whirring of the treadmill. Suddenly feeling exposed, like we’d gone too far, like this isn’t funny anymore. Now we are thinking about the women who obligatorily handed over their bodies for the evening’s entertainment for the Russian soldiers, accepting their place on the abortion cart, being bled until their shelled bodies were ready for the entertainment market again. We slow the treadmills down, sweating and abruptly cold and look around for something to cover up our bodies. Stepping off the treadmills, shaking with the sudden exhilaration, I write Entertainment on a page torn from my notebook and place it among the pathway of headings. We may abandon it tomorrow.

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Completing (?) the build At home, I finish building the shed. I confess, it’s a flat-pack; I followed the instructions carefully. I drilled too many holes made certain amendments, but essentially the completed image was as sold in the photograph. Although happy to have somewhere neat to keep bicycles, I am hovering on the edge of disappointment that all I have now is a shed identical to everyone else who Googled ‘bike storage for small gardens’. Theatre that follows an instruction manual offers something familiar and comfortable; teetering on the edge of formulaic and predictable. Many of us dabble with the desire to have our work liked; of thinking that the more gigs we get and the more tickets we sell, the better our work is. In this grading system, particular theatre trends lead the way and provide us with a blueprint. But if we are only making flat-pack performances in this way, then why not just call in the folk on the billboard who were offering to come and do our D.I.Y. for us? Why do it yourself when you can get someone else to do it perfectly, or least like it looks on the box? In making this flat-pack shed, I missed the thrill of not knowing whether it would work; worrying that I might have got the angles wrong, or that the screws would be the wrong length, or that in my enthusiasm I would saw that really expensive piece of wood too short. In adapting to these mistakes discrepancies, something new can be found that gives character to the projects I carry out, and so give character to my home. (‘Quirky’ is the word the estate agent used.) During the process of devising performance, notions of starting and finishing are variable. Construction does not mean an unalterable completion; cement is not required. A touring work may never be considered ‘finished’, as it adapts and responds to its shifting audiences. It’s in the re-building that we discover that the intricacies of wrong angles, excessively-drilled holes, and even disappointing woodworm are what separates each performance work.

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Next week, Ildiko and I will be back on our treadmills starting the same idea, again, in a different way. We have picked up speed and we are briskly pacing our way towards category 1: Completed (but not quite to specifications). And if the whole thing falls down — well, that’s entertainment.

_

HOW TO BUILD A SHED:

Step 1:

Figure Out Your Needs.

Step 2:

Get Shed Plans.

Step 3:

Build the Foundation and Floor Frame.

Step 4:

Frame the Walls.

Step 5:

Frame the Roof.

Step 6:

Build the Gable Overhangs.

Step 7:

Install the Fascia, Sheathing and Roofing.

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MY RESOURCES, WHERE ARE THEY? Kathe ri ne Ha l l _

At this moment, I am mostly dance-making as a solo artist. This is charged by a desire to understand how one body can pass on, carry, scatter, lift up, share, assemble, filter and collect many voices in choreographic movement. The performance work that I make is often informed by a searching to tangibly understand the environments, emotions, experiences (EEE) that I encounter. I’m often thinking about arranging movements to create a space for others to playfully reflect on individual and collective behaviours. Where does my work begin? I sense it is in seeing something that I feel connected too. My research is set alight by seeing something through my body, a feeling, a vision, a protest, a disapproval, a light joy, a balancing. How do I start from this sensation? Going beyond desires and encounters, I am noticing that my first steps will often occur in the resources that I carry and are available to me. Perhaps these are the places to re-find centre points in which I can work and move outwards from?

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MY RESOURCES, where are they? — In my mornings I’m awake. I take a pen and notebook. I find a comfortable position to sit or stand. I close my eyes to pay attention to the dances moving within me. I give notice to the lightness, groaning, aching, twinging, murmuring, rushing, tingling, beating, weightiness, breathing, filling, opening, hunger I can see dancing through me. Still, with my eyes shut I use the pen to trace and mark what I can see. My inner morning dances.

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— In my friends There are days where I think I know my friends, who they are and what they can offer. But is what they are offering me only what I am asking of them? Is there more to my friends than what I am choosing to see? Can I call it a friendship if I can put [insert any of five below] in a box and use them at my disposal? How can I work with [insert any of five below] in a relational, tangible, daring way?

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Friends, I see that I cannot know you without experiencing your nature and forces. I barely know what my body can do.

— In my seeing

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See Tracks

Seeing the Tracks

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Seeing the Traces

In my practicing

[

]

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What can I see?

Above are some notes of my immediate noticings of what I can see in this excerpt of dancing. They are mostly small attempts at describing the movement that is happening.

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This is only the beginning in unpacking this section of movement. I must go and make a tea, read something different and then come back to this for the second, third, fourth, fifth time. I wonder what more this dancing is doing or saying. Perhaps it is not doing or saying anything? That is also okay. Perhaps it is. And it will be. I could arrange the found movements to do or say something if I can see that it has potential to do that? Reflection is a key process in my making. It opens my focus or viewing of my work. It allows my immediate responses to settle and see the work more as it is and less how it feels. It allows me to consider the streams of context that the movements might situate with or connect too. It allows me to consider what I am offering. I move out of a process of reflection when questions arise. The questions are useful as the “what is next?� points of departure. They continue my momentum of inquiry out of an unending cycle of reflection, which for me often welcomes doubt. I am seeing this, so how can I investigate this further? What could I follow next?

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A RECIPE FOR PERFORMANCE (AND RISOTTO) Matt Wa t t s _

You know that feeling of emptiness in the pit your stomach after a long day at work? You want to pop your aching limbs onto the sofa, order a takeaway, and turn into a vegetable. Well, a ha ha ha, I’m here to tell you that maybe cooking some vegetables would be better for you! I’m Matt Watts and today I’m going to show you how to cook up one of my famous performances, the perfect dish for entertaining. I like to use what I call the George’s Marvellous Medicine approach. Go to your larder/pantry/small cupboard/large cupboard/fridge/freezer/fridge-freezer/ vegetable patch, and grab a little bit of everything that you like. I mean everything. It doesn’t matter if the flavours don’t traditionally go together. Some people might call that a mistake, but I call it innovation. Some people might call that needlessly pretentious, but I call them heathens. Some people might call that childish, but I place my finger and my thumb in the shape of an ‘L’ on my forehead and that really shows them who’s boss. Chop your ingredients into bitesize chunks and throw them into a casserole dish with some oil. Put it on a medium heat. Once they’re nicely browned, you’re going to add the rice and the stock. It’s a common misconception that rice is a bland carbohydrate whose only purpose is to provide substance. You must realise the

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truth: it isn’t there to pad the performance; it is the performance. As you cook, the rice will expand and take on the flavours of your ingredients, creating a perfectly proportioned performance which both satisfies and excites. If you’re feeling a bit naughty, you can add a big old whack of full-fat self-indulgence. Some performers will tell you that self-indulgence can be unpalatable and overpowering, but some of my favourite performances are smothered in the stuff! I’ve tried working without it, but it always manages to slip in there somehow. The only rule I have is that it must be an ingredient and not a performance in its own right. Once it’s tender but not soggy, it’s time to take it off the heat. While many performers like to throw in a smidgen of insecurity to give an extra tang of realism, my secret ingredient is an over-confident certainty that I have something interesting to say. But that’s our little secret, so keep it to yourself! I hope you’re hungry, because it’s almost ready. All that remains is to season to taste. ‘But to whose taste?’ I hear you ask. As Henry Ford said “if I had asked people what they wanted, they’d have said faster horses” what a wit that man had. I saw that quote over a picture of a sunset on Facebook the other day and it really made me stop and stroke my chin and consider things. If you’re only creating for yourself, then you obviously season to your taste. It gets a little trickier when creating for others. You’ll want to keep that unique flavour, but you mustn’t be arrogant enough to think that everyone will like it, and it’s common courtesy to at least make it vaguely palatable. Now, my final tip for you: any performer/chef with good taste should be well aware when a joke/metaphor is becoming overstretched. If, however, he acknowledges this and carries on anyway, it can be passed off as a deliberate, thrillingly postmodern, artistic decision. It’s an insurance policy of sorts; if people dislike it, you can claim that they haven’t understood it. Serve with salad and an air of superiority.

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ALL I HAVE TO DO IS START Lewy s Ho l t _

Starting is essentially all I have to do

I want to think of the best idea

Something that will not only work….but will inspire and edify and cause extremes of satisfaction, challenge, comfort, risk and personal growth and development for all who pay witness…

But this is ego. I really only want those things in order to elevate myself. To know that I did a good job, to know that because I did a good job I will be able to rise up some kind of ladder somewhere… do I deserve this? Shouldn’t I be more selfless? Anxiety…. Avoiding the amalgamation of all these anxieties is easy. All I have to do is start.

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All I really have to do is start. Starting will put to bed an infinity of possibilities of the work I might make. These possibilities are in equal measure of course: Terrible. Awe-inspiring. Pathetic. Underdeveloped. Empowering. Of social pertinence. Mainly concerning the colour green. Grotesque. Inclusive. Beautiful. Crap. Garish. Delicate. Crass. Accidentally insulting to minorities. Accidentally promoting of social justice. A commercial masterpiece. Not quite good enough for an international tour. Too good for a small scale tour. Too logistically fudgy to get funded. Really, really good if we could just fix the awkwardness of those entances and exits. Dumb fun. Sexually confusing. Only good when viewed from a toilet seat. Concerning for those who care for children under 5. Entirely costumed by large sunglasses (head to toe). A kids show. A Genesis medly in dance form. Good. All I have to do is start. Talking about starting is probably going to cause me anxiety. If I don’t start then nothing will happen. I’m almost 100% certain of this. If I don’t start then nothing will happen. I think maybe I can say that I AM actually 100% certain of this. Now I know this I have to wonder….do I think it’s better to do something or not. Today I must do something… I’ve got to start now. All I have to do is start. (screeching children in the airport…ugh…I understand though, they didn’t ask to be alive….and sometimes being alive is really uncomfortable. I would mind having an enormous cry right now.) I’m going to start with the idea of roller coasters and see where I end up. That’s right. Rollercoasters shall be my topic. I will henceforth make a performance from this subject…rollercoasters. Now to call upon dance theatre legend and her architect husband Anna Halprin and (his name) Halprin. Their practice of the ‘RSVP cycle’ will

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help me to make a performance out of the abstract concept of rollercoasters….yes it will….it will help… just watch. R S V P Resources Scores Value-action Performance

Resources — Making a list of what you have at your disposal, techniques, ideas, physical resources, props, costumes, technology, likes, dislikes, personal experiences. My resources: In terms of a theme/topic/starting point I have rollercoasters…that’s right…rollercoasters… Now to extrapolate from this theme…. Rollercoasters… are large, are on a sliding scale of safety are highly commercial

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follow a composed structure of elements and provide a time-based experience have a narrative are exciting consist of winding pathways, up, down, side to side, spiraling, spinning have a variety of speeds make some people sick mid-ride Are made of metal, sometimes brightly coloured and/or shiny are used as metaphors often for love‌

This could go on. Let’s stop. Other resources I have access to: Contemporary dance technique, Some experience of comedy performance and acting. A mac laptop. Songs: Rollercoaster of love. Life experiences: I have been to Alton Towers once. I have been to Disneyland Paris once and did not want to go on Space Mountain. My brother went on Space Mountain whilst my father and I went on a little car-on-a-track ride that went very slowly and safely.

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This will do for now…

Scores — The next bit is scores… I’m going to make a score for performance using some of the resources that I have pooled. First score: Music — Rollercoaster of love. Action — A dance that consists of winding pathways with spirals and journeys from up to down. Text — Telling the story of 6 year old me going on very safe, small ride with my father while big brother goes on Space Mountain, a large, kind of daunting rollercoaster. Tone — Flashy and high energy like a commercial. Costume — Something garish and metallic shiny. Duration — 5 minutes (if really good/enjoyable just keep going).

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Value-Action — This essentially means kind of evaluating what just happened. I ended up performing my score in my bedroom.

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The costume was not particularly shiny, just a bright blue colour which worked fairly well. I found that my story didn’t really take very long to tell and was, all in all, not a terribly interesting story; at least it wasn’t in its improvised form alongside my dance. There may be more interesting elements If I dig deeper into the subject matter and themes that present themselves. Maybe I could experiment with different ways of conveying the story, perhaps through metaphors, maybe turn it into a poem, or maybe I could take on characters through performance and tell the story from numerous perspectives. Or maybe the thing that is interesting about the story is the relationship between brothers and a father. Perhaps this story is just illustrative of deeper aspects of my own emotional state towards my family…maybe some creative writing scores are in order to fuel some of this research. The dance I performed has some good bits and some bits that don’t feel as relevant. The action of somehow miming the rippling motion of a rollercoaster seems relevant. The high energy and flashy tone felt uncomfortable and forced. The music almost completely overpowered the performance. This is also a stage where I need to make a decision about whether or not I’m using ‘rollercoaster’ as a point of departure or I’m sticking with it as a theme to keep running with. Filtering though some of these evaluations I can go back to the drawing board and develop a new score.

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Performance — The ‘performance’ section of the RSVP cycle refers to a time where one must present what one has to an audience. This isn’t the end of the cycle because it’s a cycle so can go around and around and around forever but there are still those points where you share what you have with people. I tend to see these as end points of a process but after looking at the RSVP cycle I realized that they are just points of a process, and the process continues after/between those moments.

As a way of kind of concluding… Essentially, this is a kind of clear methodology for just getting on with it. I’m really aware of, and consistently guilty of, just staying put and imagining what might happen if I did just get on with it but never really getting on with it and just sitting down and eating peanut butter. With this kind of structure and un preciousness about generating material you can quickly start working with quite tangible material as opposed to dwelling in potential for a prolonged period of time. Essentially this acts as a framework to follow if you’re prone to improvising as I am. If you just want to get up and start doing something, if that’s the only way that you can get away from the nagging presence of potential.

_ Halprin, Lawrence (1970). The RSVP Cycles: Creative Processes in the Human Environment. G. Braziller.

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YOU WON’T BELIEVE THESE 8 REASONS WHY POPULIST TRASH IS THE HIGHEST FORM OF ART Conw a y McDe r m o t t _

To some degree, all art is a private language. It’s very purpose is often to communicate ideas or experiences that cannot be effectively translated into more straightforward means of presenting information. For instance, while a newspaper article feeds it’s audience every single part of what it wants them to glean from interacting with it, a contemporary art piece is more often a jigsaw of what it wants the audience to learn, giving them all the pieces necessary to build their own meaning, and not caring so terribly if the picture which they eventually assemble resembles the artist’s intended meaning. [

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What this means is that effective conceptual art runs deep, and is all the richer for it. It allows for a broader and more complex readership of work, and means that the experience and attentiveness of individual audience members, is as important to it’s success as the artist’s intentions. Theoretically, the mental investment that the audience member puts in should mean that whatever they do take away from the piece resonates with them personally, and is more deeply appreciated for having been earned rather than spoon fed to them. [

]

As a young artist, I was encouraged by tutors, peers, and the institutions where fine art was upheld to approach my practice with this in mind. I was discouraged from being too literal. I was told that audiences should have to put in a little work to decode what I was trying to say to them. Now, as an artist whose youth is swiftly plummeting towards it’s thirties, I would like to argue an alternative approach, with these 8 Reasons Why Populist Trash Is The Highest Form Of Art. >

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People Really Hate Modern Art Their definition of “Modern” might make an art historian’s toes curl, but people know what they don’t like, and they aren’t budging. The idea that an audience should have to work a little to properly access art makes it too easy to dismiss these people. To tell ourselves that if someone doesn’t like our work, it’s because they aren’t good enough, rather than to face the possibility that we aren’t good enough. [

]

But why should an audience have to put the work in? Especially when looking at the work of an artist they don’t know from Adam, who — statistically — is almost certain to be a twat with nothing of value to say? This brings us to our second point:

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Finite Amount Of Time On This Planet, And No One Wants To Waste Moments Of Their Short Lives Overthinking A Glass Of Pay Off In Entertainment Or Enlightenment. Sorry ‘bout it. [

]

If we want an audience for our work, then we as artists need to earn them, not the other way around. It doesn’t matter how insightful, intelligent, or well thought out our concepts are, if our work is so alienating and opaque that our audiences don’t feel like they have any point-of-access to understand or enjoy them? Then those concepts are entirely wasted. Of course, other Artists and existing art lovers might be prepared to work harder and give new work the benefit of the doubt, but if these are the only audiences that we are reaching out to with our work, then we become complicit in making the art world more exclusionary and elitist than it already is. >

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[

]

On the other hand‌

History Inspiring Fantastic Art [

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Pop art is so firmly entrenched in the established canon of fine art now, that it’s easy to forget how revolutionary it was in it’s early days. It entirely defied the idea that art should be something that could only be accessed or understood by the elite, and saw brilliance in the soup cans, pulp comic books, and movie stars of it’s era. It is, however, far too easy to appreciate Pop Art as it’s been synthesized into part of art history canon, rather than continuing to observe its principles in the images and media which saturate our lives now. This makes it all too easy for us to miss the fact that...

It’s Own Right [

]

Take Batman. Just as an example. Biggest, oldest, most dubious and overwrought franchise that immediately sprung to mind. >

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Even setting aside the dozens of films, pieces of animation, and toy lines that have come out over the years, the Batman comics alone form a visual narrative which has been ongoing for the last 77 years. At the heart of which, is a character and concept which has been shaped collaboratively over almost a century by hundreds of writers and artists. It has reflected the values of a changing society, and maintained at it’s core, values of heroism which vehemently rejects gun violence. It is a weird, sprawling, monster of a thing, which has somehow retained a readership in the hundreds of thousands, despite being fundamentally silly in every single way. As artists, how often do we ask ourselves what it is it about this kind of work that is so lasting and so compelling? How often do we consider whether our own work can be improved by borrowing from mass media, rather than from ephemera. This brings us to another advantage of making something with the broadest possible global appeal...

You Improve [

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No one goes into the arts because they’re expecting a financial reward, they do it because they have something within them that urgently needs to be communicated. Whether it is a personal truth, a political commentary, or something more abstract, art is a means of reaching out and making ourselves known to one another, and you simply can’t do that if you don’t care about having an audience. There is, of course, a very popular opinion that art should be practiced for internal satisfaction, and for it’s own sake, but while this outlook is largely harmless, it’s also kind of self indulgent. This is not to say that making trashy work with mass market appeal is the only valuable kind of work, but if you care about the reach and scope of your work, then the only reason not to try and translate your ideas into the most crowd pleasing work possible, is out of a desire to satisfy the conventions and style of more abstracted work. Whether it actually suits our artistic intentions or not. On the other hand: [

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The chances are, if you live in this universe along with the rest of us, you have some guilty pleasures. Whether you’re into big budget marvel movies, low budget saturday morning cartoons, or the pornographic art of Jeff Koons, we all have something that we love viscerally and with a stomach full of shame. Challenging ourselves to tap into whatever it is that makes us love these things and reproduce them in our own work, confronts that shame. It frees us to make bigger, more interesting work. To take our lofty artists ideals and translate them into something that we feel that bone deep, giddy excitement for. It also never hurts to question what it is that makes us ashamed to love certain kinds of media, and whether that shame is justified, because after all: [

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In some ways, work that allows itself to be read and interpreted literally and at face value, holds itself open more easily to criticism than art which remains more difficult to read. Without the distance created by demanding it’s audience decode it, it makes it easier to judge the success or failure of a piece of work. The more obvious it is what a piece is trying to do, the easier it is to tell if it succeeds or not. However, as digital communities create new ways in which audiences interact with and respond to work, criticism and critique in many places, have become a transformative process, giving audiences a greater sense of ownership and investment in work. So If one of the core arguments against making overly literal art is that audiences better appreciate work that they have a hand in giving form to or interpreting, then the force of critical fan communities make it clear that populist work can not only succeed in this respect, but can also grandfather a spiralling array of responsive, transformative works that spring from the audience’s critique to it. [

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We are currently living in a time where mass production and the internet mean that a remarkable democratization of art is able to take place. Where new media empires are growing around teenagers with webcams, and a huge, powerful, grassroots art movement has swollen up under the feet of the absolute lowest of the low art forms. It’s an exciting time, and offers us an opportunity to test the limitations of where our work can sit in the world, and how free we can be about giving our audience ownership of it. This said, if the temptation to keep your work shrouded in indecipherable abstraction is still winning out, consider if you will, one final possibility: But maybe you’re fine with that. Cishet scum. [

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DOORS IN THE WALL: A DIARY FOR ART, LIFE & PSILOCYBIN Wr i t t e n b y A . Dou b l eYou _

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Introduction _

> DAY one

What follows is a diary of 33 days.

Beginning with an end — B’s funeral.

I am writing this to you now on day 30.

A brief discussion of funerals en route left my Dad quiet and I caught his watery eyes in the rear view mirror. I took a photo of a plant growing in the gents at the wake. It felt like it represented something of the deceased, or our experience of his passing.

Tomorrow I will fast, travel to the countryside, find a quiet spot, and eat 15g of fresh psilocybin truffles. A record of that experience will become the diary’s final entry. A. Double You

Dad also said at some stage: ‘The world’s your lobster’. >

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>

DAY two

Because of this diary, I thought to send a text message poem to a friend:

Monday evening D is feeling The presence of beings that stretch to the ceiling. They hold our their hands and make secret plans, For the Sky, for the Land, and for Healing. >

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>

D  AY three

Magic Mushrooms are illegal. 2005 drugs act says they are class A. Illegal to have, to take or to sell. 7 years in jail. Unlimited fine. However, mushroom grow kits just grow mushrooms, and psilocybin spores can be bought for examining under a microscope. So I ordered both, and then went swimming. >

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D  AY four

Moved to tears by M’s writing as we explored the place where people meet.

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>

D  AY five

Parcels arrived. A grow kit, and a big syringe with Amazonian mushroom spores.

The kit will take up to 4 weeks to bare fruit — that is 2 weeks beyond completing this diary — bit of a blooper. Plan B options are: 1. don’t do it 2. find someone in the UK 3. make a truffles order online and hope they arrive safely I saw my first car to car beggar in the UK today. She had a crutch and was wearing a Nando’s uniform. >

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>

D  AY six

At a Faith & Arts festival. Saw this car en route

sung a sufi chant [

LISTEN ]

wrote a poem

No one can bring you to the present but you That’s why a true master waves you away. The artist accepts this solitude, Then asks you to join them >

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>

D  AY seven

Holy Communion. [

LISTEN ]

What did Jesus eat for the last supper? We ate Sainsburies pitta and drank KA grape juice. After a mindfulness talk I bought cider from Jesus smoke from this man with a magic mushroom bicep And watched a late night screening of ‘Embrace the Serpent’ ‘When you find yourself in darkness you might feel buried. But perhaps you have been planted.’ >

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>

D  AY eight

Back at base. Checked the grow kit — can see 2 little patches of white on the sides of the container looking back at me. Mycelium is growing.

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>

D  AY nine

F & I talked and wrote and drew about money. I realised I am in a constant state of anxiety about income as I have never been a breadwinner. So all earnings have a sense of fortuitousness about them — ‘How lucky I am to be doing what I want and be getting money. I must use that money for something deserving in future.’ When will getting money for art not feel like a magic fluke? And more like bread? >

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>

D  AY ten

Another text message poem

Wednesday night J’s thoughts are in flight Making tight patterns ‘bove The roadway’s streetlight. Soon she will rest Wrapped in darkness And those flying thoughts will make a home In her chest. >

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>

D  AY eleven

Terrence McKenna — Opening the Doors of Creativity [

]

‘If the artist cannot find the way, the way cannot be found.’ >

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>

D  AY twelve

TERRENCE MCKENNA SURVIVAL TIPS FOR THE PSYCHEDELIC TRIP:

• inform yourself • do it with as little company as you can stand • be in darkness, in silence, in a comfortable space • d  irectly after eating, examine your conscience (Think about all the ways you’ve screwed up and the people you have screwed over. Give yourself the material for a bad trip before it comes on so you’ve dealt with everything already.) • N  avigation — smoke can lift you out of experiences you don’t like. So can singing. Take a breath and belt it out. • Have an empty stomach. Eat at the end before bed.

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>

D  AY thirteen

found a spider indicating a landmark on Marlborough Road. >

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>

D  AY fourteen

Got twisted up by feelings like I don’t have a home, a routine, or enough freedom to know when and how to relax. >

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>

D  AY fifteen

Quantum Physics. Watched Down the Rabbit Hole [

]

Magic truffle.com say they deliver to the UK without problems. Have a magic day! Kind regards Padme. >

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>

D  AY sixteen

Had an appointment with J. Told him my fears that this project was covertly inspired by juvenile throwback desires for thrills and escapism. Spoke to L, he advised that if an order to magictruffle.com was intercepted, it probably just wouldn’t arrive. Sniffer dogs aren’t trained for truffles, and they come in vacuum sealed bags. >

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>

D  AY seventeen

Fabric nightclub closed last night at 1am. Another cavern of electronic memories filled in with dust and rubble. I danced till the lights came on over and over and over. It was a truly thrilling place and time of my life. There is 1 driver on my route who is the happiest bus driver I have ever met. His service is extremely consistent and full of joy and kindness. Today he even pulled over to return a child’s backpack to a parent. I have no idea how that was arranged, but that’s the kind of guy he is. Had a dream I was in an old country house with Jerzy Grotowski. I told him I wanted to show him some training and did some embarrassed chi gong. He didn’t seem to watch, he sat in a dining chair facing the other direction. But after a while he said it was good. I told him I would then improvise, again he turned away. After a few moments he stood up, walked to the wall of the room and pulled the house open. He revealed a sun lit muddy field with a murmuration of birds overhead moving in beautiful patterns. My improvisation became inspired, full of the emotion of the setting. >

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>

D  AY eighteen

Best tube journey of my life today. Now, watermusic, William Basinski [

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>

D  AY nineteen

4AM poetry under a tree in the burbs.

This Poem will end And so will this pen But life lingers Asking questions. Where are we rushing to? And why rush? These trees will end Or so it may seem And life lingers And I hear voices In the distance. >

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>

D  AY twenty

Watched human traffic for the first time. [

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Ordered the truffles today. Will they arrive in time? Will they arrive? >

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>

D  AY twenty one

Saw C in hospital. They have multi-coloured mushrooms out front.

We sat in the sun and C and I tried to connect on another plane of consciousness by closing our eyes and pretending to sleep. >

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D  AY twenty two

Quite a magical night out there in the burbs. Someone has installed quite an elaborate traffic light system at the end of the cul-de-sac. I had a small dance with the lights.

I wonder if there is a public space here in burbiland where I might be safe to journey from? A terrific atmosphere, but very populated...>

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>

D  AY twenty three

Text poem.

Tuesday round 10 Its daytime again R is making a new kind of friend. One that speaks sounds That wriggle and bend, And when the night comes their eyes Glow without end. Asked my meditation teacher for his thoughts on psychedelics: ‘Psychedelic drugs obviously have an affect. There are disasters, but also successes. I never went there. I thought I was too unstable psychologically then. Though I did others, the most delightful being opium. But then just the once. I am afraid you will have to trust in the still small voice in your heart. What’s it saying to you?” >

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>

D  AY twenty four

Mycelium looks like 2 hands touching today.

Finished reading The Psychedelic Experience by Tim Leary and others. Some good survival tips, its all about the set and the setting — the preparation and the environment. ‘There exist unlimited possibilities for, on the one hand, delightful sensuous, intellectual and emotional novelties if one floats with the current; and, on the other hand, fearful ambuscades of confusion and terror if one tries to impose his will on the experience. The key is inaction: passive integration with all that occurs around you. If you try to impose your will, use your mind, rationalize, seek explanations, you will get caught in hallucinatory whirlpools. The motto: peace, acceptance. It is all an ever-changing panorama.’ >

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>

D  AY twenty five

Today I witnessed the glorious site of an elderly man walking backwards through a clearing, occasionally touching trees with his arms. >

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>

D  AY twenty six

At 10.15 I leapt at the sound of the door thinking Parat from DPD was to hand me a package of psychedelics. It was from vistaprint, with business cards. From magic to business. I read Audous Huxley — ‘The Doors of Perception’ and later admired diamond dew drops in the full moon light. Text message poem

Friday past 12 A full moon is out. B is deep south He’s a vibration scout. Swimming with schools of fishes that shout: SWIM! SWIM! TO THE CENTRE AND OUT! >

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>

D  AY twenty seven

Scouting trip. The site I visited fairly remote and almost certainly desolate come nightfall. I wonder if the landscape was too sparse. Several areas gave excellent views, but were also exposed to strong winds and cold air. Being in nature feels like the experience will have the least psychological reverberations across the hallucinatory dimensions. Listened to Terrence McKenna again. He was describing a phosphorescent purple ectoplasmic trans-dimensional matter (or perhaps goo) that he suggests to be pure mind. >

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>

D  AY twenty eight

Went to Moondance 2016 in the olympic park. Bodies herded like cattle, packed so tightly the animal’s only escape is through inward vibrations of sound, smoke, alcohol and chemical synthetics. Jungle can be very exciting and spooky... [

LISTEN ]

Text message poem

Hi Ho P! Thursday arise! Your mouth is a speaker Project to the skies! Tune us to frequencies Florescent and blue. Do right, do wrong do nothing. Do the new!

P’s Reply

Do the new A salad cum stew A rainbow in a shoe A party in a loo. The spirit is alive Do the new!

>

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>

D  AY twenty nine

The truffles have arrived. In the style of Masura Emoto... [

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...I have taped a word to the package and put them in the fridge. I hope that the word (embroidered by a good friend) will give a warm and embracing energy. I might add ‘truth’ tomorrow.

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>

D  AY thirty

Tomorrow I will write up the diary, prepare things and set about going in 2 days. I feel concerned for the weather, finding a safe spot, and the effects of the trip destabilising me in ways that distances me from work and relationships.

Do the new Enjoy the flu lie and be true and scream at the view Do the new do the new Live life askew Give your trousers a chew How do you do? The new waits for you. >

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>

D  AY thirty one

Writing up the diary has taken longer than expected and there are still more things to be done to make a safe get away tomorrow. I have decided to investigate a place called Marley wood. The name Marley means a ‘pleasant wood’ or a ‘boundary wood’, which sound suitable. I hope I can investigate the terrain fully, then find a good spot to be for the night. The weather is saying no rain, with sun rise and set at 7. The mycelium is also nearly ready to be transferred to their next growth stage. I will do that before I leave. I added the word ‘Truth’ to the truffles in the fridge. Now I will take a bath.

>

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>

D  AY thirty two

Packed and ready to go. Once I have found a safe spot I have decided to concentrate on giving over to the experience. I will look over the diary once more to steer the ship, and then begin silent contemplation. After my return tomorrow I will record my experience. The mycelium isn’t quite ready to be transferred. Maybe I can do it when I’m back. >

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> [

_

D  AY thirty three LISTEN ]


WORKING IN CIRCLES In co nv ersa t i o n w i th o u r f r i e n d s _

During 2016, Tetrad presented 10 public performance events in Leicester, Nottingham and London. We have worked with 75+ artists through performance platforms, residencies, workshops and this booklet. This would not have been made possible without being closely supported by our partners, funders and project collaborators. We asked some of our collaborators (and good mates!) to quickfire respond to the questions that inspired the making of this booklet. We recommend heading out for a long walk with your friends, a notebook and some questions like this to hand. Where do performance ideas come from? How do you start? Where do you begin? What physical form can starting a creative project take? What comes first? Form, content, concept? Where can inspiration or influence be drawn? How do you find it? Are you trying to communicate something? How do you know you have something to say? Are you ever setting out to achieve something? Why? How does your audience factor in? Reality vs expectation?

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Where do performance ideas come from? DWC: I steal ideas from other people. I collaborate with artists; put them in a creative environment and see what happens. JK: I think all my ideas come from things that made an impression on my life between the ages of 6 and 24. I think I find it easy to obsess over things that are considered uncool usually as I find them fascinating. Pro wrestling is a really good example, I’ve loved pro wrestling since I was young, getting friends to tape it for my from Sky. I think you just need to get your head around the fact it’s performance and not a fake sport trying to con you into thinking it’s real. It’s like a movie or a drama, when you forget it’s not real, that’s where its amazing. JH: I really try and find point in which sadness meets comedy. So I try and look at my own life in third person and try and spot the moments that are like “god thats depressing… but also kind of funny in reflection” SA: Knowledge.

How do you start? Where do you begin? DWC: Conversations, about anything, and see what subjects rise to the surface. Provoke, prod, probe. And change direction if nothing is happening. JK: I try and get my mind out of thinking like a spreadsheet so I always use notebooks. One for ideas (one page blank, one lined) with a Dixon Ticonderoga pencil as they’re the only ones where the rubber works properly, then another notebook when the idea has formed. I do have a book that specifies all the sizes I draw in so I guess it’s more difficult to get away from spreadsheets than I thought. I always being at my desk too, it just helps me focus. JH: Film is an important element for me as the film really hammers home the personal connection to the story, as simply as if you can see the thing I’m talking about you’ll engage more with the idea. So I try and think of how I can tell the story visually to fit with the general concept of what I want to say. SA: In the mind.

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What physical form can starting a creative project take? DWC: A place of the collaborator’s choosing. The environment creation takes place in, whether it’s conversations, or making art, have a massive influence on the final work. The work isn’t about the place chosen, but the work wouldn’t work in the wrong place. JK: Because I’m so adverse to talking about or sharing anything I’m always thinking about whether its a drawing or a book. I love self publishing and I think more people should do it! I tried stand up comedy once. I’d love to try more but I can’t deal with the nerves. JH: Writing… Lists are good. I try and write what I’m going to say first and then change it once I realise its not what I sound like. My writing style is very different to my spoken style. SA: Talking. What comes first? Form, content, concept? DWC: Depends. Collaborations are brief, and in that short time, the method of working gradually evolves. Usually concept, but

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that can change as the work progresses. JK: Content. I don’t think I’d be able to achieve anything without content. JH: Fuck context, marry concept, kill form. Not really, I mean all of those things are fine… I don’t have an issue with any of them really. SA: Concept. Where can inspiration or influence be drawn? How do you find it? DWC: People. Talk to people. JK: I keep a lot of stuff, I still like a lot of things from when I was young and I’ve got the kind of personality that can’t just know a bit about what I like. I could talk you to death about pro wrestling, cricket, margate, chas and Dave. My inspiration has to come from something I love otherwise I won’t see it through. JH: I probably take the most inspiration from podcasts, This American Life and Love and radio are two that really showcase personal experience and story telling. Writers such as David Rakoff, Simon Rich and Mike Birbiglia are major influences and my first experience


of the way they tell stories has been from these podcasts. SA: Collaboration Are you trying to communicate something? How do you know you have something to say? DWC: I’m trying to let the concepts of the collaborator lead creation. My own influences are in there, but the collaborator’s are more important. JK: I don’t really think about communicating something or having something to say. I don’t really mind if what I do says nothing to anyone. It’s not going to make me stop. JH: Well I think what I have to say is always petty trivial. Mainly because I’ve had a very easy life so far, so I’m not the right person to get in to heavy topics. But I think the small things can be just as interesting or heartbreaking given the right context. SA: I don’t know I do… Maybe I am communicating… Are you ever setting out to achieve something? Why? DWC: Fun, and work. Because I like fun, and I like eating.

JK: I’d love to be able to draw faces properly, because I like it when whoever it is is recognisable to others but perhaps part of the appeal to others might be when it goes wrong as it’s funny. I don’t mind that either! JH: Yes. I don’t have any kind of performance background so I feel like anything is a massive achievement. Like I feel like doing a show is like running a marathon, I don’t think I can do it but I’d like the challenge so I practise and do it and it feels great. probably also why I perform so rarely. Who wants to run a marathon every week? SA: What is achievement? How does your audience factor in? DWC: Not factored in, in the least, when creating. But it is for the audience. JK: It doesn’t. I’m happy to share things I’m making. I guess self publishing is a sly way of me putting my work out there, and I’d be lying if I said the odd occasion I sell something isn’t exciting but I never make anything with anyone else in mind but myself. That sounds really self centred doesn’t it?

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JH: It’s important that they’re there. Yeah… definitely. I can never do a good rehearsal of anything. I can’t remember the words without a bunch of people looking at me. Reality vs expectation? DWC: In all projects, plan, plan, plan, wing it. Restrictions in time and budget mean there is compromise. But compromise can be an artistic trigger. JK: The reality is always not what I hoped for but it is what I expect. I know I’m never going to be the

greatest drawer of faces in the world, I’m fine with that, but drawing makes me really really happy so why would I ever stop? I’m never going to stop whilst it makes me happy no matter what. JH: Just like a guy standing up out his chair really pounding his hands together as his face is soaked from tears, but also he’s like laughing as well. And his legs are trembling just from the exhaustion of different emotions he’s gone through. SA: Reality

DWC: David Wilson Clarke, DWC Imagery JK: John Kirby, Attenborough Arts Centre JH: James Hissett, Cinematographer SA: Stuart Allen, Dance4

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CONTRIBUTORS _

ANONYMOUS My entry is a diary, whose purpose has been to look out for creativity. Making a living as an artist of late has, paradoxically, distanced me from the things I live for. Here, free from having to justify my efforts, be evaluated or apply for funding, I take the opportunity to note the doorways that free me into otherness. I hope reading it will inspire you to do something similar, or agitate you to do something different. A.Double You

CONWAY MCDERMOTT Conway McDermott’s hands are covered in pie. After cutting their teeth on Fine Art in Newcastle, Conway moved mostly into writing and theatre production in Liverpool, and has been working full time as a collaborator with the radical creative collective, Hungry Bitches Productions since 2012.

DANIEL NICHOLAS Daniel Nicholas is a comedian, a creative producer and sometimes he says he is a writer. In fact his business card says ‘writer’ on it, but other than writing this article and his own shows (which in many ways are more improvisation rather than solid writing) he doesn’t really do much writing. He’d like to do more, and this is a start. Since beginning stand up in 2011, Daniel has gone on to become one of the most established alternative comedians in the midlands, and to a much less extent the UK, and to an even lesser extent globally. www.danielnicholas.co.uk @EllisonNicholas

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ELISE NUDING Elise Nuding is an independent dance artist — a mover and thinker whose practice-based research criss-crosses performance, choreography, and writing. Her work has been presented in the UK, USA, Portugal and Sweden, and her writing appears in a number of online and printed publications spanning the academic and the creative. Her research explores the entanglement of people and things, intersections between writing and dance, and improvisation in/as performance. Elise is also involved in several artistled initiatives geared towards further enriching and sustaining the independent scene. She holds an M.A. from London Contemporary Dance School and B.A. in Archaeology from Brown University.

JACK BRITTON Jack has been working as a solo maker of contemporary performance and comedy music since he graduated from his MA at De Montfort University Leicester in 2013. He has two shows 1.9 a performance that combines spoken word and Parkour that was performed as a part of A Nations Theatre in May last year. This show chronicles his personal history with Parkour. His other show I Used to Hear Footsteps was performed as a part of Summerhall’s 2016 Edinburgh Fringe programme, this work is a piece of documentary theatre about the haunted house where he spent his childhood. He is a supported artist with midlands based development platform In Good Company as a well as a founding member of performance collective Tetrad.

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JAMES MORGAN James Morgan is a performer and choreographer from East Yorkshire, currently living and working in London. He creates solo performances which straddle the edges between dance, drag, theatre and live art. James seeks to expose the frayed edges of each performance, and ongoing themes in his work include ambition, attempt and disappointment. He is currently developing ‘DRAG ON’, a new work being made with support from Arts Council England. It will premiere on 6th February as part of contemporary performance festival, ‘NOW 17’ at The Yard, London.

KATHERINE HALL Katherine Hall is a dance-maker whose practice uses the interplay of movement, voice, markmaking, objects and improvisation to explore the individual and collective body. She creates live performance to offer a space in which others can playfully expand their thinking on ways to be and act together. Katherine’s first solo work ‘Fill in the___’, an interactive performance lecture has been performed at UK Young Artist’s Festival 2014 and at BJCEM Young Mediterranean Biennale in Milan in October 2015. ‘Volver’, a performance installation with Sian Rosier, was performed at Dance4 Nottdance 2015. Katherine is currently in research and development for new solo work ‘BUOY UP’.


LEWYS HOLT Lewys Holt is an interdisciplinary dance artist/ teacher/dramaturge based in the UK. His practice, while focusing on dance, spans comedy, visual arts and devised theatre. His dance practice is concerned with release and improvisation, taking influences from Skinner Releasing technique, Open Source Forms and Contact improvisation. He has worked with prominent international artists including Tino Sehgal, Frank Willens, Rosemary Lee, Michael Pinchbeck and Florence Peake.

ZOO INDIGO MATT WATTS Matt Watts is a Leicester-based maker of things. He’s currently working on his debut solo show ‘Playlist’, which is a spoken-word/storytelling/ music/theatre/comedy hybrid. He has his fingers in several other pies in a variety of flavours. He wants to be a proper writer one day.

Zoo Indigo are a two woman Anglo-German performance company based in Nottingham, founded by Ildiko Rippel and Rosie Garton. They create multi-media theatre that uses humour as a mechanism to explore the realities of unimaginable experiences. The duo often use a bi-lingual approach to examine cultural identity, themes of displacement and home, alongside their own experiences of motherhood. Their most recent work, ‘No Woman’s Land’, follows the footsteps of Ildiko’s grandmother who in 1945, expelled from her place of birth, walked 220 miles across Europe with her two small children and all her belongings in a cart.

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The Drawing Board  

The Drawing Board is an online publication produced by Tetrad. Tetrad is a Midlands based collective dedicated to supporting the evolution o...

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