Memories and Settling Dust

I’ve been back in Brisbane for just over a week, and the dust in my head is just beginning to settle. Here are some images from our time in Phoenix.

Everybody is keen to hear how we got on in Phoenix, and I am more than happy to report how well we were received, along with some of the great feedback we got from our audience members.

Some of Angela’s students who attended the Fringe performances were kind enough to give us permission to quote from the essays they wrote for assessment for their Film and Theatre Studies course.

Kathleen drew attention one of the benefits of a Fringe Festival, in that it introduces audiences to new venues:

“I attended “The Fall of June Bloom (Or What You Will) at Space 55 in Downtown Phoenix. It was performed in a small room, with space for about 50 audience members in stadium seating. I had never been to the venue before, and didn’t even know it was there until the performance. It was wonderful to discover another hidden gem in Phoenix, a city I spend a lot of time in for work and school. It was a quaint and intimate setting, and I will definitely look into future performances there.”

She described the production thus:

“Half the performance was an older woman struggling with identity issues and finding out where she belonged, and the other half was a young, sassy, stubborn college student interested in learning and probing into the lecturer’s life. Although their manners of speaking were the same at times, in the sense that they had steady voices, good projection, etc., they brought such different life experiences, ways of looking at things, and quirks in personality to the shared performance, that the contrast was well appreciated and understood.”

Holly suggested that:

“In my opinion, the performance was intriguing and fascinating to execute a piece with Shakespearean presentation to the works of today’s realism took courage and a convincible aura of personality to be successful.”

Joe found the production to be a very new kind of performance:

“The play was set up as a classroom in a way. June Bloom was the teacher and we the audience were the students. I felt it was a very informal performance based on the relationship she established with the audience. The actress interacted with the audience on numerous occasions which gave the play a dimension I had never seen before.”

He wrapped it up like this:

“I enjoyed the overall play because I had never been to performance like this one. It was something completely different which intrigued me. Both performers acted with great intelligence, emotion, and passion. It was a very impressive performance that I would definitely suggest to anyone.”

Thanks so much to everybody who contributed, to Micha and Dave for their wonderful hospitality, to Lauren and Angela for their beautiful energy, commitment and talent, to the Estrella Community College community for their support, likewise the Phoenix Fringe Festival folks, to all our audiences at Estrella and at Space 55 – and to the kindness of strangers who stopped to chat in cafes and bars, on sidewalks and waiting for a bus or a train. Phoenix, you rock.

 

 

One More Show, Phoenix!

Tonight is our final performance at the 2011 Phoenix Fringe Festival.  What can I say?  Come along, join in the fun. As one of the students at the Estrella Mountain Community College performance commented on our TalkBackR site:

“I loved that the forum worked to convey surprise and confusion for the audience from the beginning. It really helped to make us feel connected to the performance, rather than simply audience members we felt like we became participants.”

TalkBackR is a lovely idea, but it’s not perfect, so do feel free to leave any comments, feedback, thoughts, suggestions here on the website, or shoot me an email.

I love that what started out as a 10 minute one-woman sketch about 3 years ago, now has a cast of – well, however many people there are in the space by the time we finish.  No-one gets humiliated, there is respect for everybody’s role, whether sitting in the audience or joining Dame June on stage for a bit of coaching in playing Shakespeare.

So, only one show to go, and then Dame June heads off to other parts on her world lecture tour. Who knows where she will turn up next?  Not me, that’s for sure. I remain, as always, her humble servant, following wherever she leads.

See you tonight – at Space 55 – 7 pm sharp.

 

Opening Night in Phoenix

It’s here at last, after all the planning, rehearsing – online and in person, travelling, organising, writing and re-writing. Whew!

The play has evolved quite dramatically – and comically – since Brisbane. What a difference it makes playing with different people.  I am so glad this is the kind of company Thunder’s Mouth Theatre is. There is no standing still, either creatively, philosophically or intellectually when you work this way.

Our tech run went well, I just love Space 55.  It seats 50, the audience on risers, with a small stage area, black curtains at the back. Just perfect for Dame June to spring up and down, chatting to the audience, wandering at will into and out of the dark spaces of the mind, playing with, for and about Shakespeare’s language, and dealing with whatever events the evening happens to throw at her. Good luck, June!

Now, I’d better get those posters ready to stick up in the lobby, and drop around to the other venues I’ll be visiting over the next three days.  Better late than never – I trust.