Photo's taken by Georgia Randall
We are getting closer and closer to Christmas, and more and more frantic with rehearsals. We are starting to see progress and a direction in our piece. We have developed our floor plan more, and in doing so we have realised that as a company we are very prop heavy. We use props such as a hairbrush or duvet cover and have found we don't use them in the conventional ways. A hairbrush is designed to brush your hair, but it can also be used as a microphone to sing to your favourite song, a back scratcher, or something to hit you with. Exploring the context of an item is really interesting to us as a group, and we hope to develop our understanding more in the future.
As an all girl performance group, we are in a very strong position to create theatre. Our feminist ideologies gave us the confidence to voice our issues and our love for physical theatre gave us a starting point. Looking at practitioners such as DV8 and Bryony Kimmings, we are being propelled forward as an all singing and dancing, performance group. We felt that our audience should be aimed at women to give them to courage and confidence to empower themselves but incorporate men as well and giving them the understanding of what women go through. It's not a 'we hate men' performance but it's merely stating the issues that some women face in life.
Rachel created a movement where she flopped, picked herself back up and flopped again. She repeated the words "It's like going start over, rinse and repeat and rinse and repeat and done" as she felt that sometimes life for a woman just seems monotonous and repeated over and over, we pick ourselves back up and start again, but it's opened to interpretation.
The woman always has to play this role of being fragile and dependent. And if you're not, they're fascinated by you, but only for a little while. And then they want to change you and crush you. And then they leave.
Our tutor told us that when we are influenced by a performer we have to channel them and pretend to have them in our company, so that's what we did; Introducing Stevie Nicks to our performance group. Heavily inspired by the song 'Rhiannon', we asked ourselves "what would Stevie do?" and the answer was just to have fun with it, stop being so serious and embrace each other.
Embracing Stevie Nicks, we have added singing to our piece. Riyadh sang a beautiful hymn to a god, and Georgie sang a sea shanty.
When I was four, I became a whore, the day I went to sea,
Georgie has a very innocent and childlike voice so we are using that to our advantage to almost shock the audience with the lyrics. Rachel told us that she wanted to be a pirate when she was younger until her mother told her the only female on a ship was the prostitute. The two songs contrast completely, with Addy's song making her strong, feminine and beautiful, and the pirate song is quite hard hitting with the lyrics but we clap along and use different tempos within it to regain power from the song. It's very upbeat and fun to sing along to.
As a group of women, we are exploring the notion of gaze and who controls the power in a theatre. We give you permission to look out of bodies, our forms and you cannot take that power away from us in the space. It's more difficult than we thought, because we want to explore issues such as domestic violence, confessions, etc but we don't want to lose the power in the space. For example, if we were to take all our clothes off in protest to clothing labels and body image then it could be misconstrued by the audience and men might enjoy it instead of seeing the real reason behind it. Therefore, we have to understand our relationship with the audience and our relationship with ourselves.
During our floor plan, Georgie stood up whilst it was all quiet and said confidently that she sold pictures of her feet online. This spurred the idea for confessions, and to expand on the idea that we aren't afraid of our dirty little secrets. We feel empowered by them and we wanted to show that in the piece. Therefore, we ask our readers to give us one of their confessions, it will remain anonymous and we may just use it in our performance.
By Georgia Randall
Love, Banshee. x
Abramovich, M. (Interviewed by Brockes, E. 2014. "Performance Artist Marina Abramovich: 'I Was Ready To Die' The Guardian. May 12. Accessed 30th November 2016.
Link : https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/may/12/marina-abramovic-ready-to-die-serpentine-gallery-512-hours