Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Violent Delights ~ Part Four

Back to Cambridge today. So far our casualties comprise Ania’s nose, everyone’s fingers & two sticks, but these are seen as the inevitable & appropriate consequences of battle & spirits were high. (In the minibus, Maudie wryly suggests that the cast is falling vicitm to the very attitudes & tendencies it seeks to expose.!)

We performed first on the edge of the meadow opposite Scudamore’s famous rental punts, all bobbing up & down on the Cam. We were watched solemnly by a large group of Spanish students who, like a flock of starlings, turned & wheeled away just before the end of the piece. We moved to our old spot by the market & had a lot more success, with members of the audience approaching us afterwards with praise & questions.

Sadly, we also drew the brief attention of some local pondlife & had to cope with rather primitive barracking. This is, of course, part of the territory for any kind of performance that seeks to engage the attention of passers-by & turn them into an audience. At one point, however, I had to employ the full range of my powers of concise repartee & I was pleased when the hecklers did indeed fuck off as requested.

Tomorrow we head for London by train for our last set of performances. We’re accompanying Emma’s Art group, who have an appointment at the Hayward Gallery for a guided tour of the Rebecca Horne exhibition. The general vote amongst the Art people seems to have been that the journey between King’s Cross & South Bank should be made by bus rather than London Underground. My lot were contemptuous & opted for the tube. Decisions tomorrow.


Blogger Thursday Next said...

Did your students find truth in "violence begets violence?" Although my experience with any sort of sword or stick play is very limited, it seems that if it is done for the sake of violence, even just illustratively, the adrenaline gets running and one sometimes forgets the violence is not supposed to be "real" and begins to respond to the violence coming towards you.

12:36 AM  
Anonymous Dick said...

Without a doubt, the adrenaline ran with a vengeance, but each one of them knew that if emotion dominated then the tight, trapeze-artist coordination on which both the integrity of the piece & each actor's personal safety depended would be disrupted. Then, of course, the chaos & nihilism that they were both illustrating & commenting upon would take over.

All acting is a paradoxical combination of the entirely spontaneous & the absolutely disciplined. In this case the paradox was deepened by the simple reality that the frantic & unrestrained competition being illustrated depended upon a complex, almost telepathic cooperation between all.

11:12 PM  

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