Category: General
Posted by: uncle
This blog has been set up to provide an information hub for US(&f)'s tour of Gilgamesh to the UK, China and the Sydney Opera House. We'll be updating daily and you can hear from all members of the company. Shortly you'll be able to register to get email updates too.
Category: General
Posted by: uncle
The company has just finished the leg at the New Greenham Arts Centre just outside Newbury. Newbury is best known for being the international home of Vodafone, and we're told is a traditionally wealthy area.

The New Greenham Arts Centre is best known as a former US military base. Up until the 80s the base was one of those classic offshore pieces of the US that have bowling alleys and use US dollars, and is in every way they can manage just like home for all the soldiers that live there. It used to have the longest airstrip in the UK, for all those B52 bombers, and a series of massive bunkers that were the launching pads for Cruise Missiles; apparently the nuclear kind. So, for Gilgamesh to play at this site seemed to us to be extraordinarily appropriate.

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Category: General
Posted by: uncle
It was great to be in the Melbourne Fringe Festival again. The unbridled creative energy of the Fringe is something we wanted to be a part of. There is often a perceived hierarchy in theatre that places Fringe below ‘professional’ or ‘funded’ work; a stepping stone stage to move on from. Certainly Fringe was important for us in building our reputation and opening up opportunities to be programmed by the Melbourne Festival and the Malthouse. But, really it is the energy of ‘Fringe’ artists that the company identifies with, and wants to maintain its connection to.

Since we moved into The Guild Theatre at Melbourne University the main work of the rehearsal process was managing the balance between detail and flow. We’ve written a lot about working the detail in the last couple of posts. In particular, how it was useful to have time to look very closely at some moments that we had previously allowed the momentum of the piece to carry. Our theatre works closely with the building and movement of moments and energy. So, once the detail has been explored, it is also vital to allow the build and movement of surrounding moments to also take their influence on how each moment is generated.

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Category: General
Posted by: uncle
On Day Three we continued to look at some of the details in scenes we thought needed some tweaking. (See Day Two for more about this.) Again, we were looking at a death scene; this time the Death of Enkidu, as opposed the Death of Humbaba mentioned in the last post.

Death scenes are great in theatre. But they can also be difficult to get right. Death is probably the greatest possible extension of the suspension of disbelief. You can suspend disbelief about anger or love relatively easily in comparison; and sometimes you don't even have to. But death is something where the line between pretence and reality just can't be crossed. I can't think of a single time when I've believed an actor to be dead when they represent death or a dead person. Many is the time I've wondered whether actors were really in love when they were only playing being in love.

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