Friday, 2 November 2012

The Woods / The Wake

Jane Packman Company and mac birmingham present:

The Woods / The Wake

A sensory installation also hosts a live performance “eulogy” for the ending year
mac, Birmingham 1 to 30 Dec (The Woods), 6 to 15 Dec (The Wake)
Directed by Jane Packman | Devised by The Company | Designed by Barney George
Sound Design (The Woods) by Lewis Gibson
Sound Design (The Wake) by Sam Fox & Richardo Rocha
Performed by Francesca Millican-Slater, Sam Fox & Richardo Rocha
PRESS NIGHT: 7pm, Friday 7th December at mac, Birmingham

Jane Packman assembles some of the UK’s most dynamic up-and-coming theatre makers and designers to create surreal, sensory gallery installation The Woods, which also hosts The Wake, a celebratory performance created to accompany it. Visited by over 5,000 people in four weeks during its 2011 run at Birmingham’s mac, and returning as part of mac’s 50th birthday celebrations, The Woods is a seasonal, atmospheric and interactive work for all ages set in a domestic space gone wild. It is inspired by autumn spent outdoors under the trees, nature writing and personal stories of letting go. Audiences are invited to explore, touch and play, or just sit and think: their movement will spark different sounds in the space, from a distant tree falling to the noise of a journey or notes of a song.

During the middle two weeks of The Woods, the company will stage The Wake, an uplifting performance event in celebration of the passing year. Audiences will join a party of up to 30 in the domestic / bucolic setting of the installation, where a team of performers and musicians will take them on a ride through memories, events and moments that formed the last year. Audiences can expect an entertaining communal experience with music, eulogies, the chance to make something, and perhaps even a wee drop of whiskey.

Director Jane Packman comments: “The gallery at mac Birmingham is a fantastic space for our installation The Woods, so it will be great to have the chance to see people interacting with it again. I'm really excited to be working with the team to create The Wake, a new, celebratory performance, which we'll host inside the installation. We're playing with live music and sound, and creating a eulogy for the year just ending. It should be a life affirming way to kick off the festive season, and lots of fun to be a part of.”

Performer / deviser Francesca Millican Slater’s previous work includes Instructions for Heartbreak (2010), a Powerpoint presentation on how to break your own heart, I Promise To Swim The Channel (or the story of how I might) (2010) in which she promised to swim the channel (she remains in training) and 2011’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe hit Me, Myself and Miss Gibbs, marking the anniversary of a postcard sent 100 years ago.

Sam Fox is co-artistic director of Birmingham’s Kindle Theatre, whose innovative, large scale work ranges from theatrical banquet Eat Your Heart Out (2010) to The Furies (2011), a retelling of the ancient story of Clytemnestra as a sweaty rock gig.

Lewis Gibson is a Sound Designer and associate artist of Uninvited Guests, whose work includes Make Better Please (2011) and the highly acclaimed, award winning It Is Like It Ought To Be: A Pastoral (2007). He is also a founding member and composer for Sulayman Al Bassam's company SABAB. Other work includes collaborations with The Unicorn, Nigel & Louise, London Bubble and Graeae.

Jane Packman Company makes ambitious, moving performances and installations in collaboration with exceptional artists and audiences. A founder member of Birmingham theatre innovators The Other Way Works, Jane’s recent work includes Treasured - A Secret Journey, a performance for one person at a time based on sculptural jewelry (mac, 2010) and A Thousand Shards of Glass (2012) a surround-sound action adventure performed by one person to an audience of 30, showcased at Northern Stage’s new venue at Edinburgh Fringe 2012. Jane is particularly interested in collaborative models of development, multi-sensory and audience sensitive work, and art as activism.

Funded by Arts Council England, The Wake is part of “mac at 50” a special programme of events, activities and exhibitions to celebrate 50 years of providing arts for all.

Running Time (The Wake): 1 hour | Age suitability (The Wake): 14+ | @janepackman

Company InformationDirector Jane Packman Designer Barney George Lighting Design Ben Pacey

Sound Design Lewis Gibson (The Woods) | Sam Fox and Ricardo Rocha (The Wake)

Performed by Francesca Millican-Slater, Sam Fox and Ricardo Rocha Devised by The Company

Listings Information

mac Birmingham

Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham B12 9QH | 0121 446 3232

The Woods (installation)

First Floor Gallery | Free

1-30 Dec 2012 | 12 noon to 5.30pm Tues - Sun (closed Tues 25 Dec)

The Wake (performance)

First Floor Gallery | £10 (£7 concs)

6-15 Dec 2012 | 7pm Thurs - Sat

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