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Devising and Advocacy: The Red Room's 'Unstated'

White, Gareth (2010) Devising and Advocacy: The Red Room's 'Unstated'. In: Devising in Process. Palgrave Macmillian, Basingstoke, pp. 93-109. ISBN 9780230573673

Abstract

It is difficult to faithfully record and disseminate the process of a company devising a piece of theatre, to excavate those 'ephemeral moments of devised performance' (Govan, Nicholson and Normington, 2007, p.9). It is impossible to watch the company in every minute of their process: you are not privy to their dreams; you are not with them as they overhear a conversation on a bus; you are outside fetching the tea at the very moment that they make a breakthrough in the devising process because a bird has flown through an open window, causing them to think of the next scene as a pair of wings fluttering hysterically. But it is possible to tell something of the truth if certain moments are allowed to encapsulate it, to stand as small parts of the larger metaphor that will act as a simulacrum of the reality of performance devising. Then it is possible to give an account of the difficult, delirious, funny, frustrating and joyful process that theatre and performance artists undergo as they make work. Rather than write the whole story of the making of 'Dead Wedding' I will look at certain significant moments, trusting that they contain and explain the fashion in which this remarkable performance came into being.

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