Way back in the midst of time (November last year) my friend Darragh wrote to me.
Hello lovely lady!
That is how the old Plámásach (sweet-talking) young man began… I shuda known, my mother warned me… sure I never listened did I?
He was passing on information – anything that has a whiff of ‘old’ about it – is pushed my way. Well now, to be fair, Darragh was nudging me towards a proposed project. He is a hard man to say ‘NO!’ to. One of these days I might learn……
In anyways, as they say. This was the project:-
Irish based company Fitzgerald & Stapleton in collaboration with Choreograph.net – the online site for writings on performance- are creating an online interactive performance called MINE. This project will involve Fitzgerald & Stapleton working with 4 Irish based women of different ages (12 years and under, 13-18years, 19-59 and 60+ years). Over an 8 week period we will post one question every two weeks relating to themes relating to society and life, which each participant may respond to through all mediums for example writing, film, drawing, photography. We are looking for honest opinions and responses from the participants that reflect their individual life experiences. There is no right or wrong and no artistic experience is necessary as we want to work beyond the regular artistic community and include the wider public within the arts. Throughout the process the participants may contact us at any time for help or feedback. The participants will need access to a computer, and experience of emailing – or someone who can assist them with uploading any writing film or images. Unfortunately we cannot offer a fee for the participants but all will be credited, unless they wish to remain anonymous.
At the end of the 8 week process Fitzgerald & Stapleton will collate the feedback of each participant to create four individual choreographic scores – like a choreography for the internet- which will be published online on choreograph.net. As well as this we would possibly like to discuss the performance of these movement scores with the participants in the future, which we would definitely seek funding for to offer payment. The language scores are how we as a dance company perform our dance work, using writing and visual material as a score to direct our movement for performance.
November is a bleak month, and sure I needed something to keep me outa trouble, so I let my name go forward…..
Áine Stapleton a bundle of bubbly delightfulness was my contact, generous with her time and encouragement for me, at every stage. No matter which side of ‘the pond’ she was on the lines of communication were kept open.
The questions came and the four selected victims participants wrote their replies within their own space, under their biographies. Some of my replies appeared as stand alone posts here on my blog after they were published.
Week followed week and I posted my homework, it was fun, but for me, a little more difficult with each question…
Question 3 – Compose and sing at least one version of the following song –
“Who Am I (What’s My Name)?”
Me, with not a note in my purse never mind my head…. WRITE A SONG ❗
I struggled, squeaked, even tried shoving the hairbrush in my mouth but nothing worked. I had a bath (they say that everyone sings in the bath), but the only result from that was a clean body and wrinkly fingers! Looking in a mirror was no better, all I saw was my mother telling me to get on with the job. 🙁 I finally gave Tobias the rest of the day off and shut down the laptop. Next morning all bright and bushytailed I set to work and managed to produce some lyrics. Don’t waste time looking for “Who Am I (What’s My Name)?” by Grannymar in the top 100, anytime in the near or distant future. I can guarantee you that it will not be there.
Then came the bombshell.
Question 4 – Create and perform your own choreographic score.
Don’t get me wrong, but I thought that was what Fitzgerald & Stapleton were supposed to do. 😉 Well I struggled. Struggled in more ways than one. I was hit by nasty bugs. Tobias came off worse and needed a few days in ICU for laptops. The bug that hit me, left me in bed for two or three days of sleep, only venturing out of bed for more fluids and medication. Circles and Feet were swirling in my head, perhaps I was hallucinating. As I recovered and thought of question 4 for MINE, the words seemed to fit so I took it from there.
Suddenly realising I had passed the date for publication, I fired off the following comment:
I apologise for being so late, my laptop was borked for over a week and I had a bug myself. I hope I am still in time to add my contribution.
I was encouraged to go ahead, so I posted my last contribution, I saw it as a skeleton of the leaf, giving the girls the freedom to flesh it out or chop and play with in any way they choose. That was back in January.
At the weekend I had an email from Áine. Their final result was posted on the site. The piece is a combination of all our contributions. Now all they need is a Sponsor to aid in funding the performance of this movement score.
Thank you folks for the opportunity to stretch myself in directions that I never dreamed I was capable of. I wish you every success in this endeavour and look forward to the day it is performed.