Monday, 25 March 2013

The Stage review of 'The Arrival'

You create work because you believe in it but when others feel it too it's a lovely feeling.

'A 50-minute gem that fuses movement, music, poetry, circus skills and projected animations seamlessly to bring the experience of strangers arriving in strange lands to life.
It’s a beautiful, moving piece of loss and longing that never feels less than honest and truthful to those whose stories it represents.'
The Stage  15.3.2013

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Guardian Review for 'The Arrival'

'This co-production between Tamasha and Circus Space, inspired by Shaun Tan's graphic novel, captures the confusions of immigration very well. It's a beautifully understated show that encompasses many kinds of language: physical, musical and emotional.'
Lyn Gardner - The Guardian

I woke up early this morning to see what Lyn Gardner made of  'The Arrival'. I was delighted.  I am going for a run now in the snow...that features in 'The Arrival' -Tian Mey ( a Chinese woman who has escaped domestic slavery) remembers her first experience of stepping out into the snow.

 First time I saw it I was afraid to step into it wearing only my sandals. My toes were frozen. I thought this is a cold cold country' 
(Published in Methuen Drama Playscript of ' The Arrival'

A whole page of snow flakes each with their individual make-up are also drawn by Tan in 'The Arrival.' If you haven't seen this book go and buy it for your children. It's a definite Books For Keeps. This morning snow brings back a memory of my dad carrying me on his shoulders through a village in The Lake District because the snow would have reached higher than my head. It is these kind of iconic and poetic pictures and pared down, elemental human experiences that Tan captures in his beautiful book and that Kristine Landon-Smith and I in collaboration with Circus Space and artists, composers,  actors, designers and cheoregraphers have tried to echoe.

It's so gratifying that this journey has been felt.

As I set out in the snow this morning I feel my Dad's generosity of spirit and  remember that we are all carried on the shoulders of the many migrants who paved the way...and owe them a debt of gratitude.

Friday, 22 March 2013

The Arrival has opened..

It's always a nerve wracking moment the opening of a show. As I sat in the auditorium watching the dress rehearsal in Southampton I was keenly aware of the responses of the couple sitting behind me. Charlie Folorunsho, 'The Man In The Hat' in our production is staying in digs with this couple and had invited them along.

Charlie Folorunsho as Dele in The Arrival (photo by Sandra Ciampone)

I spoke to them afterwards and was touched to see the tears flowing... 'Did you know,' they told me 'that Southampton used to proudly display a sign in the dock with the words 'The Gateway to Empire.'
It felt just right that this piece about migration,with its epic ship journey, should dock first in Southampton port.

 'I am trusting this boat to carry me safely on these huge waves...'

The playscript of  'The Arrival' was published by Methuen Drama on 20th March.

It's featured today on The Waterstone's blog.
'The Arrival' is now on tour 21st March - 13 April 2013