Tag Archives: Branwen Davies

March – it’s a little busy!

???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????March is going to be a very busy month at Scriptography Productions. First we kick off with Grave Men Near Death at Aberystwyth Arts Centre (Wednesday 12th and Thursday 13th March), then straight into Response Time: Journeys at the Gas Gallery (Sunday 16th March) and then we see the month out with a Crash Test scratch night on 27th March.

Grave Men Near Death is a new play by Terry Bailey, who runs the MA Screenwriting course at Aberystwyth University. The play was developed as part of Playpen, an Aberystwyth Arts Centre’s  Writing for Performance Group project, short plays on any subject. Grave Men Near Death was a perfect short play and when Terry admitted he had ideas for other scenes and characters I have to admit I was sceptical. Plays are the length they need to be because – that’s it. When writers ask me about play length I always say it will be the length it needs to be. Let’s face it we’ve all sat through plays that needed a good edit or plays that felt empty as though there were some missing scenes drifting around somewhere in the ether.

I read the new version of Grave Men Near Death  sceptical and expecting to see a fifteen minute play dragged out. But it wasn’t, interestingly the original play was there largely intact but around it were wonderful new scenes and characters which added more depth and layers, it had the heart it started with but it had got bigger and better.

As I watched a rehearsal the other day, and did what I always do – watch the writer watching their play – I was as always thrilled to see his delight in watching his work come to life. In a time when we’re constantly being told that new writing is dead, that new writing isn’t worth supporting or prioritising and in a time when there are so few companies in Wales producing work with a new piece of writing at it’s heart – I can’t help but wonder why companies wouldn’t want such an amazing experience of bringing new work by a writer to life, I can assure everyone bringing a new play into the world is magical.

???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Next up will be Response Time, our 48 hour challenge project to produce performed responses to art, space and environment at the Gas Gallery. This time we will be responding to the Sculpture Cymru Journeys: Responses to Place and Barbara Matthews exhibition Hidden Depths. The Response Time project gives a space for writers, artists and performance makers from many different disciplines to play. No better way to describe it really. We spend 48 hours playing – with ideas, working processes, collaborating and then we open the doors and let the audience join in the game. The audience can stand back and watch or they can even join in sometimes. We don’t insist that words are involved – that would be silly! But I do delight when words are included and also when a performance artist is inspired to express herself with words or when a physical performer decides to write a piece or when a writer decides to collaborate with a physical performer and explore a new working process. I’ve always been a little confused by the need to define new writing and new work – and seriously why has so many hours been lost to debating. Also I don’t understand why so many organisations insist on establishing rules for work to be developed – this way, or that way. Or the hours spent defining and analysing what is right or wrong in creative work. Surely every piece is different, surely every piece should be developed the way it needs to be.  At Response Time there are no rules – it is a space to play, to have fun, to enjoy.

??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Then finally for this month anyway – Crash Test – a scratch night for work in development – Thursday 27th March. A very informal environment perfectly suited to the living-room like feeling at the Aberystwyth Boat Club Bar. Again there are no rules – if it involves words then I’m happy for it to be shared. This about testing work out with an audience, about writers hearing their words beyond reading them aloud to themselves (I am still constantly astonished by the number of writers who don’t do that). Crash Test is a good name for it – it is about throwing things out there and seeing what crashes and what delights. It’s used as a testing ground for the Writing for Performance Group but also by other writers to test out work sometimes performed by themselves, sometimes performed by others. We provide performers if needed. It is a chance for writers to get used to sharing their work – something that can hinder and hold back so many writers from getting their work out there. It is open to all, again I am not interested in defining things – spoken work, poetry, plays, storytelling, stand-up – if it has words in it we can Crash Test it.

So that’s my March – please do come along and see what we get up to. None of these things are possible without audiences. None of us are writing for ourselves, we are all writing because we want an audience to hear our work, and be engaged by it and be excited by it – no matter how it is created, no matter what style it is created in, no matter what discipline or platform so please do come along and see work in it’s many different forms and most importantly have fun following us on our journey as writers and creators.

Sandra Bendelow
Writer/Producer

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Programme of work at Response Time: Transitions

responding exercise1. Written by Sandra Bendelow, Performed by James Baker and Holly Payne-Strange, Directed by Holly Payne-Strange—Responding to Aria Light by Stephen Chilton and Transformations by Rebecca Backshall

2. Vivien Chinas Ezugha—Responding to Flicker by Ben Partridge

3. James Baker — Responding to The Red Lady by Gini Wade.

4. Edel O’Reilly and Ali Matthews —Responding to Dance for Constanza by Wuon Gean Ho

5. Sara Annwyl – Responding to Untitled by Jo Hounsome, Salome by Marcelle Hanselaar, Avatar by Chris Webster

6. Hannah Pullen—Responding to Dance for Constanza by Wuon Gean Ho.

7. Written and performed by Roger Boyle.

8. Written by Catrin Fflur Huws , Performed by James Bakes, Catrin Fflur Huws and Holly Payne-Strange, Directed by Holly Payne-Strange—Responding to Aber Prom by Kim James Williams

9. Hayley Addis—Responding to Ystwyth Garage by Pete Monaghan, Transformations by Rebecca Backshall and Aria Light by Stephen Chilton

10. Naomi Heath responding to Untitled by Jo Hounsome and the staircase

11. Ruth Hogg—responding to This I Know by Kathryn Polk

William Bock process12. Rebecca Louise Collins and William Bock – responding to the upstairs gallery

Thanks to Kim James-Williams for participating in the performance with her live drawing

Response Time: Transitions curated by Branwen Davies

Films created and edited by Ian Smyth. Film production for the Response Time project by Trebuchet Film Productions

Sound for  Hannah Pullen, Roger Boyle and Sara Annwyl by Nick Jones

Response Time is produced by Sandra Bendelow for Scriptography Productions

The next Response Time will take place on Sunday 24th November in the Gas Gallery.

Scriptography Productions will be hosting a Crash Test scratch night of text-based work in development on Thursday 31st October at the Boat Club 7.30PM

With thanks to Celf Ceredigion Art
http://www.celfceredigionart.org
http://www.facebook.com/celfceredigionart
@celfceredigion

Response Time: Transitions – introducing the curator Branwen Davies

Branwen Davies

Branwen Davies

Branwen Davies who wrote and performed for the first project Response Time: Pilot Light and will be curating Response Time: Transitions.

She is a writer who writes in Welsh and English. A founder member of ‘Agent 160 Theatre Company’  and Welsh language theatre company ‘Torri Gair’ and has written for Sherman Cymru, Dirty Protest, Undeb Theatre Company  and Sgript Cymru.  She co-wrote ‘The Exquisite Corpse’ for True Fiction Theatre Company which was performed at the Millenium Centre Cardiff, The Edinburgh Festival and Southwark Playhouse. She also co-wrote the Welsh language play ‘Dominos’ for Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru.

She is currently a PhD student at the Theatre, Film and TV department at Aberystwyth University. Branwen is interested in discovering new ways of creating theatre and stepping away from text based theatre and delving in to the world of devising and experimenting.

“I’m interested in curating as I’m excited about weaving the variety of individual work that will be created and presented in order to tell an unique story as a whole. Not knowing what will be created is exciting and refreshing and a tight deadline will bring plenty of adrenaline!

The project allows for  an eclectic mix of responses from people approaching art from all sorts of different angles and spectrums. I am excited to have artists, writers, performers, musicians, live art performers and mixed media artists under one roof. People who might never work together sharing  ideas and inspiring each other to make great art.

The Gas Gallery / Oriel Nwy is a gift of a venue. It’s central, it’s accesible with a constantly changing exhibition to inspire and provoke everyone.

Having taken part in the first ‘Reponse Time’ I realised the broad mix of people making and creating inspiring work in Aberystwyth. This needs to be celebrated and exploited! ‘Response Time’ gives people the freedom to experiment, play and discover in a creative and supportive environment.

Anything can happen. Who knows what direction the artists will go. One thing for sure it won’t be dull and there will be something to delight everyone.”

More information on Response Time: Transitions is available here

Response Time: Transitions

Vivian in the window. Image by Keith Morris

Vivian in the window. Image by Keith Morris

Performance makers from many different strands of live and digital performance including   theatre, writing, art, music, storytelling and film have been brought together and given just 48 hours to
respond to art, space and environment
in the Gas Gallery.

Response Time; Transitions will be curated
by Branwen Davies. Participants include Rebecca Collins, Holly Payne-Strange,
James Baker, Hannah Pullen, Ali Matthews, Hayley Addis, Hannah Mann, Naomi Heath, Catrin Fflur Huws, Ruth Hogg, Vivian C. Ezugha,
Nick Jones, Roger Boyle, Sandra Bendelow, William Bock and Edel O’Reilly.

The work will feature responses to the current exhibitions Transitions by post post-graduate students from the School of Art and Collaborations; Paper, Press, Print.

There will be 3 performances on Sunday 27th October at 5.30PM, 7PM and 8.30PM. Tickets     £5 (£3 concessions). There is limited space so advance booking advised scriptographyproductions@gmail.com

Branwen Davies who wrote and performed for the first project Response Time: Pilot Light and will be curating this next project said, “I’m interested in curating as I’m excited about weaving the variety of individual work that will be created and presented in order to tell an unique story as a whole. Not knowing what will be created is exciting and refreshing and a tight deadline will bring plenty of adrenaline!

The project allows for  an eclectic mix of responses from people approaching art from all sorts of different angles and spectrums. I am excited to have artists, writers, performers, musicians, live art performers and mixed media artists under one roof. People who might never work together sharing  ideas and inspiring each other to make great art.

The Gas Gallery / Oriel Nwy is a gift of a venue. It’s central, it’s accesible with a constantly changing exhibition to inspire and provoke everyone.

Having taken part in the first ‘Reponse Time’ I realised the broad mix of people making and creating inspiring work in Aberystwyth. This needs to be celebrated and exploited! ‘Response Time’ gives people the freedom to experiment, play and discover in a creative and supportive environment.

Anything can happen. Who knows what direction the artists will go. One thing for sure it won’t be dull and there will be something to delight everyone.”

Follow the project at www.facebook.com/celfceredigionart and @celfceredigion

 

Response Time – Call for participants

Response Time: Pilot Light

Response Time: Pilot Light

Following the successful pilot project RESPONSE TIME: PILOT LIGHT we are inviting expressions of interest from performance makers to be involved in the next 48 hour
challenge taking place,

Friday 25th – Sunday 27th October

The project asks for participants to create a performed response to art, space and environment at the Gas Gallery working either alone or as part of a group. Participants are given 48 hours to develop short performances which are presented to an audience for three showings at 5.30PM, 7PM and 8.30PM on the Sunday evening.

The pilot project RESPONSE TIME: PILOT LIGHT took place Friday 20th September – Sunday 22nd September. Words, images and footage from the weekend is available at the Celf Ceredigion Art Facebook page

The response project on Friday 25th – Sunday 27th October will feature two exhibitions Transitions (work by post-graduates students from Aberystwyth University School of Art)  and Collaborations: Aberystwyth Paper Press Print and will be curated by Branwen Davies.

If you are interested in participating please send a brief profile of you and your work with a covering email explaining why you are interested in being involved in the project. We are interested in hearing from performers, directors, performance artists, digital media artists, writers, film-makers, sound artists, musicians, dancers, story-tellers, spoken word. Please mention if you are interested in performing alone or would like to work collaboratively with other performance makers.

As part of the Response Time project we are also seeking guest curators for future projects. We are also seeking mentors to provide support, advice and direction to participants during the development weekend. If you are interested in the role of curator or mentor or would like further information then please contact Sandra Bendelow scriptographyproductions@gmail.com

The Response Time project is on ongoing project which will continue to work with Celf Ceredigion Art and the Gas Gallery but will also be seeking other suitable “spaces” in which to present performed responses to art, space and environment.

Please note that though we are exploring funding options the RESPONSE TIME project is currently an unfunded project so no fees are available for participation. Income generated from ticket sales will be used for future projects to cover production expenses and cover costs at the Gas Gallery to support www.celfceredigionart.org.uk

Pilot Light – a response

Branwen Davies performing her response to the work of Sandra Masterson

Branwen Davies performing her response to the work of Sandra Masterson

After a little time to reflect on the pilot  of the Response Time performed response to
art, space and environment it’s time to think
about what worked well, what could have worked better and how to make things
even more interesting for the next one scheduled to take place 25th – 27th October.

One thing that most certainly emerged was a supportive, collaborative and friendship forming environment. With all participants enjoying their experience and being inspired to produce work.

As we’ve chosen to make this an on-going project responding to each exhibition at the Gas Gallery time constraints for organisation will always be a factor but also a benefit as it serves the nature of the project as it really is a case of seeing who gets involved and then throwing them together to see what emerges.

A few things took us by surprise, the changing light of each performance resulted in changes in the performance with shadows and darkness impacting the space and performers. Tashina Keller’s movement piece became a dance with paintings and shadows by the final show.

Every performance was completely different even without the changing light which is inevitable from performance shared with an audience after such a short time in development.

Hayley Addis asked the audience to look through the windows of the art

Hayley Addis asked the audience to look through the windows of the art

Many of the performances called for interaction from the audience and so the audience changes also impacted. James Baker asked the audience to spit into his
bowl. Hayley Addis asked for the audience
to make sounds which resonated and impacted through the upstairs gallery.
Vivian C. Ezugha asked the audience to
go outside onto the pavement and watch through a window. Branwen Davies asked the audience to choose from 1-12 to select which pieces would be performed, even through a rehearsal and three performances 4 and 10 were never chosen.

There was much within the space we could have made more of and no doubt will do in future projects. People wandering by throughout the performances and peering in became part of the performances and random comments from passers by were calling out to be part of future projects.

At such an early stage of the development of the project we’re unsure the role of digital recording and simply plan to continue to do this until it becomes clearer how it can be integrated into the live performance or become part of something bigger, beyond the 48 hour installations of performance.

It will be interesting to see how much the changing nature of the art impacts on the responses creating difference is how the performance makers respond to the space and environment.

We have to allow the project to evolve and change as it needs to and to help this we will being in guest curators whose job it will be to nurture the weekend’s performances and steer them towards presentation to an audience.

It is also inevitable that we think of moving some of the pieces forward to see how they can develop alone without the art, space and environment to support them or how we can take the art, space and environment elsewhere through digital mediums.

One piece by Hannah Mann, Ruth Hogg and Gareth Williams was presented entirely digitally without any live-performance and yet perfectly reflected the whole project by containing elements of performance process and responding to both exhibitions.

There are endless possibilities for Response Time and while we ponder those we’ll continue to play.

Footage, images and recordings of the weekend are available now and we will continue to post more as we edit and upload including a filmed interview with Aislinn Knight talking about her work.

www.facebook.com/celfceredigionart
https://vimeo.com/scriptographyproductions/videos

Pilot Light Producers Diary

Catrin Fflur Huws and Roger Boyle at work

Catrin Fflur Huws and Roger Boyle at work

The last 40 hours have certainly been interesting.
I’ve been musing a little on my role within this project.
Yes I’m producing it but the title producer seems a little inaccurate.

My business card says Executive Producer
but that is largely a title I aspire. One day I’ll be an executive producer but not quite there yet!

For this project I have largely thrown a group of creative together, given them a framework of responding to art, space and environment, provided digital media equipment to record in film and sound the process and the performances and then mainly I’ve let the play.

Creative play coordinator might be apt. Curator might me possible too but then I’m within an art environment so it feels strange to call myself curator when I’m standing next to actual curators.

I kicked off the project with a creative writing exercise to get people thinking about how to respond to art, space and environment. I have encouraged people to sit in the space, to take time to think and feel and respond to the space, I have encouraged people to go off and put space between themselves and the Gas Gallery. I have observed, encouraged, resolved technical issues. I have run around on errands, been a fixer finding equipment, posted things on digital media, documented, steered, cajoled, reassured. I’ve made coffee, carried things, moved things, collected canvases, dug up soil from my garden, interviewed, shaped. I have puzzled, pondered, mused. I have cleaned, tidied, made wires safe. I have locked myself in a cupboard with Roger Boyle and locked Sean Langton in a cupboard with Roger Boyle. I have typed up scripts. I have written programmes. I have sought permission to fill a window with charcoal.

Largely I have said yes. When people suggested something I have said yes, go for it. I have had faith in people’s creative abilities to produce ideas. I have allowed those ideas to grow. I have had faith that people’s instincts are correct. It’s a response project so it’s my job to nurture responses.

Mainly I’ve just been there and let people get on with it.

So yes not really sure what you’d call it.