Saturday, 6 December 2014

You Don't Have To Be Mad To Work Here

Here's a little something for your peripherals:

Rules for Replacements

Okay, let's write a bit about shunt.

Much of "The Boy Who Climbed Out of his Face" was devised in the old Guardian Building in Farringdon. You knew this because the word "Guardian" was still readable in the shadows on the lobby wall, like the shadow around a stolen painting in some old farce. In the first two weeks of rehearsals we spread ourselves about a bit, finding whatever rooms were free and making up material to show each other, as is usual. Then we all watch it. And it's great, really great - in fact it constitutes some of the happiest memories I've had of watching theatre; I laugh a lot. Of course far more stuff is made than ends up useful to the final piece, but seeing what you've got when you lose that stuff is also a kind of making, and the stuff you've made and lost was still great to make, because you could take it in any direction you wanted, and that was interesting, and you were getting paid. And of course you can always put the flotsam on a blog.

I knew that in the first room which the audience entered there'd be three monitors, a long desk, and a table, and so, in the hour assigned to come up with something for this room, I thought I'd try and make an idea of something to be playing on those monitors - something which might suggest to the audience that they were replacements*, something which might indicate some standards of behaviour expected of them, and something they probably wouldn't be paying much attention to. And I knew we'd be wearing masks, so I made the headgear out of gaffer tape and a photocopy stuck to the wall of - so I was told - Antonin Artaud. I'd also just downloaded Trent Reznor's soundtrack to the film "The Social Network", which is what you can hear playing. It's a great default soundtrack - which reminds me of what I should post next...

* "There's genuinely an assumption made about the audience... And actually the shows that haven't gone so well, or maybe taken longer to resolve, have been ones where we haven't had complete clarity of what the fuck the audience were doing."  This interview with David Rosenberg, given a couple of years ago, is great.

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