Whew. It’s been quite a month. I’ve just about recovered from the barrage of coursework (although there are still a few little deadlines to mop up), enough to get my hands on all the photos and videos of the Seven Stories/Late Shows event, which went really well!
The pop-up performances worked better than I could have hoped for, really suited the venue and feel of the event. The culture-crawl premise of the Late Shows and the way the venue encourages you to wander around an explore really lent themselves to creating a sense of discovery as people got caught up in performances without necessarily planning to even see them.
I can’t take all the credit for the night, of course. Mike had a really interesting setup printing chapbooks in the studio, the performers’ talent was all their own, and credit for most of the documentation goes to Garry and Jade. But there is a certain amount of satisfaction in seeing that parts of the programme that I organised go off (mostly) without a hitch. I remember someone telling me that the best way to succeed in the arts is to team up with people more talented than yourself, and there’s definitely some truth there (-:
I had steeled myself for a lot of logistical difficulties, as well as the challenges of mediating between a venue and a lineup of potential performers with different needs, but everything went remarkably smoothly (although it certainly helped that I was mentally prepared). Didn’t stop me from being stressed out on the night. My own performance was… passable, in my own opinion. I could probably have pulled off a better set if my focus hadn’t been on coordinating everything else. But it was a lovely crowd, and a fun set nonetheless.
And now, a long overdue shout-out to the great local performers who came along, and went the extra mile, tailoring their sets to the themes of the exhibits and the venue. Follow the links below the check out their various pages and a sample of their work:
Doug Garry – old friend from the Edinburgh poetry scene, and one of my favourite spoken word performers. Also one of the Loud Poets.
Jayne Dent – amazingly talented solo singer, who also studies fine art here at Newcastle University.
Rowan McCabe – the Door-to-Door Poet. He does exactly what the name suggests, and he’s great at it.
Rosie Calvert & Will Finn – half (two quarters?) of acapella folk quartet the Teacups, and unfairly talented musicians in their own right.
That’s it from me for now. Expect some further screenwriting grumblings (its back to the drawing board again for me), followed by (hopefully) some new projects! In the meantime, here are some tasty video clips from the event: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLJNHS2Lo-SiSS99CJTsedQi-4vT8AOAEQ
Ethnographic addenda (from amateur enthusiasts):
“7.49: Invited lurking audience members to fill up seats in café. Lots of the kids had colouring sheets but they did not make much progress over the course of the performance.”
“9.16: A small child spontaneously cheered “You’re the best barn owl ever” as the applause for the barn owl gangster rap was fading out.”
-Jo Ross-Barrett (keen note-taker, volunteer extraordinaire)
“7.45pm: Rosie C. & Will F. were a poem, talking about things in their imagination.”
-Katelyn Brown (young music enthusiast, professional brother-heckler)