Nap-poo, Too-dle-oo, Goodbye-ee…

Ten girls came together to produce a show
Nine poppy wreaths are laid in remembrance
Eight black tap shoes are all lined up in a row
Seven hours prep time before performance.
Six soldiers’ letters read out loud by the birds
Five World War One songs, sang with love and with pride
Four wooden brooms creating sounds and not words
Three dancing styles that we each took in our stride.
Two instruments played live on stage and in key
One great adventure these birds have given me.

Works Cited:
Birds Eye View Theatre (2014) 

Little Girl Don’t Cry I Must Say Goodbye..

Dear Reader,

This is my final blog post and I hope you have enjoyed following our performance.

Pearson, F (2014)

Pearson, F (2014)

I have loved the process and seeing it all come together as we had hoped. A fantastic piece that I am proud of and nine new friends that I could not have done it without.

Sincerely Yours

Charlotte

xx

‘It may be forever we part little girl, & it may be for only a while…’

Dear Reader,

I am just writing a few lines to sign off my blog and to thank you for following our process. It has not been an easy one at times but showing our work on Friday 23rd of May has made it all worth while. I did not realise quite how emotional it would be to perform ‘Sincerely Yours.’ I think this was due to the wonderful atmosphere which a live audience provided us.

Enclosed is a photograph of the final number from our performance taken by the lovely Frances Pearson during our dress rehearsal. I think I can speak for each of the birds when I say it was thoroughly enjoyable to put everything we had which was ‘homemade’ onto the stage, not only the scripts, but also the bunting and beautiful poetry too.

 

'Dress Rehearsal' Pearson, F (2014)

‘Dress Rehearsal’ Pearson, F (2014)

The cogs have been turning just as they did in the factory scene and perhaps this may not be the last you hear of Birds Eye View Theatre Company. After researching on the Arts Council England website, there is possibility for ‘Sincerely Yours’ to be revived during the centenary of World War One with a little help from funding sources such as the Hertiage and the Centenary project which has been launched this year!

For now however, I can leave university having experienced a new skill of helping to directing a piece of devised verbatim theatre, something that three years ago I would never of dreamed was possible. Most importantly, I know that I will be leaving the University of Lincoln having made 9 new special friendships. Our aim at at Birds Eye View Theatre was to create theatre which was honest, theatre that reflected what people may have experienced during the First World War. Having listened to the stories of Lauren’s, Charlotte’s and Louise’s Grandma’s I believe we have achieved a reflection which is unique and memorable.

I am now off to prepare for the last of this weeks theatre company shows all of which have offered variety and a range of talent at the LPAC. Tonight’s is called, ‘Take Me By The Tongue’ and will be performed by a company called Hand Me Down Theatre Company. Stay tuned from more from the birds! ‘Na-poo, toodle-oo, goodbye-ee’… for now.

Sincerely Yours,

Lauren Kirby
Birds Eye View Theatre

 

Works Cited:

Arts Council England (2013) [online] Available from http://www.artscouncil.org.uk/ [Accessed 29 May 2014].

Birds Eye View Theatre (2014) How To Make Bunting. [online video] Available from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_T4cLsjRjLA [Accessed 29 May 2014].

Heritage Lottery Fund (2014) [online] Available from http://www.hlf.org.uk/HowToApply/whatwefund/FirstWorldWar/Pages/FirstWorldWar.aspx#.U4c4UCitwWk [Accessed 29 May 2014].

Mooney, C. (2014) Dear War Girls. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/05/29/dear-war-girls/ [Accessed 29 May 2014].

Pearson, F (2014) Dress Rehearsal Photography.

Pearson, L. (2014) Creating a backing track. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/04/20/creating-a-backing-track/ [Accessed 29 May 2014].

Pearson, L. (2014) How to make bunting. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/05/26/how-to-make-bunting/ [Accessed 29 May 2014].

 

A Day in the life of a Musical Director

Dear Reader,

This is the typical day in the life of a musical director…

7.00 am rise and shine

8.00 am plan todays session

11.00 am attend directors meeting

12.00 am run the music session

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This is a version by George Asaf and Felix Powell who originally composed the music.

Asaf’s version is composed for male voices, using a lower key. However, because we are a cast of all female actors, I thought it would be appropriate to make the song more feminine with the use of a higher vocal range and using mainly major chords for the guitar and ukulele opposed to minor chords.

Here’s the movement for pack up inspired by the factory movements.

3.00 pm its the end of the session and I always like to send them away motivated for the next session

The birds like to think of this as a Charlotteism, today I said they were all ‘SPECtacualar’

3.00pm get home

5.00pm tea time

11.00 pm bed

11.05 ZZZzzzzzzzz

Yours Sincerely

Charlotte

xx


Works Cited

BBC(2014) Photograph taken of the sheet music for Pack up Your Troubles[online] Available from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-25968407[Accessed on May 3 2014]

 

 

The Past, The Present and The Future

Dear Reader,

Beware this may end up being a slightly gushy post as I am feeling very proud of our company right now!

I will start with the past:

The rehearsal process has been one of collaboration and professionalism. Although, the show was led by its three directors, the company banded together to share ideas and form structures and transitions between scenes.

Pearson, F. (2014) Piecing Together Material

Pearson, F. (2014) Piecing Together Material

This style of collaboration is similar to the work of Tim Etchells and his company Forced Entertainment. We took on a fun developmental process consisting of play which allows you to try out numerous ideas, “leaving behind a trail of failed attempts and nonsense, and…slowly, very slowly, you accumulate a store of scenes and fragments that you love” (Etchells 2012, p. 36).

Now onto the present:

My present is consisting of post-show blues as you can tell by the date of this post. The show was 4 days ago and I miss it terribly.

Pearson, F. (2014) Heart Balloon

Pearson, F. (2014) Heart Balloon

However, I am very proud of how the performance went and this is reflected well in the audience feedback. If you haven’t already checked out our twitter page and have a read of some of the comments from our peers and the venue stage manager. The performance itself, I feel, was the best we have ever performed it.

Pearson, F. (2014) Beginning of the Show

Pearson, F. (2014) Beginning of the Show

Any finally, the future:

So, what is the future for Birds Eye View Theatre? Well, we are unfortunately losing a couple of the birds as they have travelling plans…lucky them! However, we are planning to keep in touch via letters and blogs. So I doubt this will be all you see of us! Throughout this process we have really found our identity and it would be such a shame to let this go as it is an identity that can be revived for many other events. For example, we are considering reforming in a few years’ time for events like the anniversary of women earning the right to vote. Feedback after the show, also suggested that we take the performance to schools. Whether it is teaching them about women’s role in the war or teaching them about dramatic tools such as, shadow work or verbatim, this performance can be utilized in an educational setting. So watch this space reader and supporter, but for now this is Lauren Simpson, actor and part of the marketing team signing off.

Pearson, F. (2014) Birds Signing Off

Pearson, F. (2014) Birds Signing Off

Sincerely Yours

xxx

 

Works Cited:

Etchells, T (2012) ‘In the Silences: A text with very many digressions and forty-three footnotes concerning the process of making performance’, Performance Research, 17, 1, pp. 33-37.

Pearson, F. (2014)

Send the Audience Away With a Smile

Dear Reader,

Send Me Away With A Smile.  Pearson, 2014

Send Me Away With A Smile. Pearson, 2014

As this is the finale song, I wanted to get as much energy into it as possible, this meant getting the girls up on their feet.
We came up with actions to help learning the lyrics and had lots of fun learning it.

I gave the girls options for the final song and this was by far everyone’s favourite, for two reasons. It was apt in our piece about saying goodbye but not wanting to. It is also the end of an era for all of the girls in the show because it’s the last song we will sing at university, so it holds great emotional ties for all the girls, I hope all of this emotion is conveyed.

Sincerely Yours

Charlotte

xxx

Tweaks and Tech: Ten Letters

Here is a sneak peak at our rehearsal in the auditorium the week before the show. As the scene involves shadow puppetry, backing tracking and dialogue from an actor so vocal projection in the auditorium is key.

After running the scene for the first time in the space, I decided it would be beneficial for three actors to speak the text from the front of the stage whilst the remaining actors created shadows behind the pyc.

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’10 Letters Scene’ Pearson, F. (2014).

The photograph above was taken during the dress rehearsal of our show. To access the script for the ‘Ten Letters Scene’  please click here.

Works Cited:

Cox, E. (2014)

Pearson, F (2014)

 

Stylising: Headphone verbatim

Here is a short video discussing the directorial decisions for several of the headphone verbatim sections of  ‘Sincerely Yours’. If you would like to see more information on how the Gobo was created then check out our Assistant Stage Manager, Louise’s blog post here!

Works Cited:

Birds Eye View Theatre (2014) How to make a gobo. [online video] Available from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GuZkyfyl3hc [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Pearson, L. (2014) Get busy making a gobo. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/05/02/get-busy-making-a-gobo/ [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Pearson F. (2014)

Till We Meet Again

So Sincerely Yours has finished, hopefully just for now. With another four years of remembrance of the First World War you never know what might happen.

poppy projection

Poppy Projection. Pearson, 2014

The performance day ran more smoothly than anticipated. As a tech team we faced complications with two of the projections, the poppy I had made could not be seen when projected onto the black floor, as opposed to the white cyclorama where projections were a lot clearer. The other projection was supposed to be on an armchair covered in a white sheet, reflective of the ‘attic stories’ we originally wanted the verbatim pieces to resemble, which got a different physical representation in the trunk in the Somewhere in France scene. The projection was an incremental progression of numbers to convey the many soldiers who would have died on the first day of the Battle of the Somme in the duration of our performance. Unfortunately the video could not be manipulated to be seen clearly on the sheet without some of the projection ‘bleeding’ onto the wall behind, which would have been seen in the dimmer sections of the performance. Both of these had to be cut unfortunately, but as they did not impact on the performance itself it was just the time making and rehearsing which had been lost. However, despite these minor setbacks we managed to do almost a full run as a cue-to-cue, as there were so many cues in each section of the show for which each person needed to practise. We also managed to finish early after a successful dress rehearsal so we had more time to prepare for the show in the evening.

Somewhere in France trunk. Pearson, 2014.

The show itself went by rapidly, and we all seemed to relax into it. As people say, time really flies when you’re having fun, which I think we all were. By the last song we were incredibly proud of what we had achieved, and I think the show really reflected how much we all enjoyed working together and how much confidence we had in each other. I found myself getting emotional during the Hand on Shoulder verbatim of my Grandma’s words, as if I was finally beginning to understand the significance of why two men wouldn’t say anything, and just put a hand on the other’s shoulder. The message of the show seemed to ring true with the audience, who gave us many lovely comments afterwards, including that the show was us playing ourselves, letting the stories speak for themselves and not trying to play the people in them. One comment that stuck with me was that it wasn’t strictly a ‘feminist’ drama, it was a show about equality, paying respects to and celebrating the lives both of the soldiers and the women who took up their jobs whilst they were at war.

So after the show has been and gone, what can I say an Assistant Stage Manager does?

In truth, a bit of everything. I don’t think I’ve ever been so busy on such a diverse number of tasks. I have assisted the Stage Manager and Production Manager with the technical elements of the show, helping to compile the lighting, sound and projection cue sheets, as well as setting up the stage with props and especially the cyc’. I have embroidered a postcard for the marketing team, created backing tracks for all the songs, to rehearse and perform with, and have sewn bunting and headbands for props and costume. I have made a bird gobo for the verbatim sections and a poppy projection for the finale song. I went to the archives as part of a team and we copied original letters to use in rehearsals as part of our research and I have helped Ellie to teach Ballroom dancing. I have tried to contribute in any way I can, using what skills I have and have eventually found my place within the company. I have loved every minute of it, in rehearsals taking direction, in production meetings assisting with the process and at home creating things for the performance, and I am humbled to have been a part of such an amazing group of women.

Send Me Away With A Smile.  Pearson, 2014

Send Me Away With A Smile. Pearson, 2014

Works Cited

Kirby, L. (2014) Devising ‘Somewhere in France’. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/05/26/devising-somewhere-in-france/ [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Pearson, F. (2014) Send Me Away With A Smile.

Pearson, F. (2014) Somewhere in France trunk.

Pearson, L. (2014) Birds Eye View embroidered postcard progress. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/04/07/birds-eye-view-embroidered-postcard-progress/ [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Pearson, L. (2014) Creating a backing track. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/04/20/creating-a-backing-track/ [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Pearson, L. (2014) Get busy making a gobo. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/05/02/get-busy-making-a-gobo/ [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Pearson, L. (2014) How to make bunting. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/05/26/how-to-make-bunting/ [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Pearson, L. (2014) Poppy Projection.

Pearson, L. (2014) The Archives. [blog entry] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/2014/02/22/the-archives/ [Accessed 27 May 2014].

Fin de siècle

The show has played, the dances have been danced, the songs sung, the stage lit and the stories told. The birds have performed their debut show Sincerely Yours and have found an identity as a collective.

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Pearson (2014)

On the day of the show the technical issues were resolved by the Tec Team and Birds came together to produce a show that was heart warming and exciting.

The audience of 149 embraced the warm and sincere nature of the company and the feedback has been appreciative. The Birds have achieved the creation of  ‘REAL theatre. Honest theatre. Truthful theatre’ (Birds Eye View, 2014) and along the way, put essence of themselves into the company’s foundations.

The show maybe over but the Producer’s job has not yet finished. As the end of an era dawns the final strings need to be collected and tied off. The finances have to be sorted and put to bed as, although this may not be the last of Birds Eye View Theatre, for now the Birds are taking a break.

Throughout this process there has been an array of ups, downs and difficulties that as a group we have overcome. We entered this process as single undergraduate students yet have emerged as a collective of women who are part of, what could be a professional theatre company. We have produced theatre that has entertained, taught and touched our audience.

The future of Birds Eye View Theatre is one that holds many possibilities. Although the Birds are flying the nest, Sincerely Yours has a national appeal for the next 4 years and 2018 marks the centenary of the end of World War 1 and women’s right to vote. The possibilities are endless so keep you eyes peeled.

For now though, this is the Producer/ Production Manager Signing off.

Sincerely Yours

Jess

Works Cited

Birds Eye View Theatre (2014) Manifesto. [online] Available from http://birdseyeviewtheatre.blogs.lincoln.ac.uk/sample-page/manifesto/ [Accessed 26 May 2014]

Pearson, Frances (2014)

‘A Guide to Creating Verbatim Theatre’

The video below is presented by Robin Belfield, a freelance Theatre maker and the director of Yellowtale Theatre Company. In 2013 Belfield held a theatre workshop at the National Theatre providing a guide to creating verbatim theatre. This video proved extremely useful when creating ‘Sincerely Yours’

Here is a short summary of the ethical rules for your own creating verbatim theatre…

1. Start with a topic: In our case, World War One and how it affected the women of the frontline.

2. Research, Research, Research!: Which included, finding appropriate letters from the archives, visiting the Lincolnshire Life Museum.

louise museum

‘Louise at the Lincolnshire Archives’ Coleridge, E. (2014).

3. Think about who is involved: Discussing and deciding whose stories we wanted to focus on – Grandparents of the company, residents from local care homes and soldiers Billy A. Haydon Lounds & Harry Butt.

archives charlotte

‘Lincolnshire Archive permission slips.’ Mooney, C. (2014)

4. Editing & Condensing!: Careful selection of interviews, footage condensed into one hour!

and the most important for our company ethos…

5. KEEPING THE TRUTH WHOLE!

Upon reflection, the initial process of creating verbatim is the same as our own, however, the rehearsal process differs. The most important rule to take into consideration is remembering to be accurate and sensitive with your material.

Read more about our own devising and learning process in one of my earlier posts, Grandma’s Verbatim

Works Cited:

Coleridge, E. (2014)

Lincolnshire County Council (2014) The Museum of Lincolnshire Life. [online] Lincolnshire. Available from http://www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/visiting/museums/museum-of-lincolnshire-life/ [Accessed 26 May 2014].

Mooney, C. (2014)

National Theatre (2013) A Guide to Creating Verbatim Theatre. [online video] Available from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-a0qNEhCly4 [Accessed 26 May 2014].

Dear Granny Biscuit

Dear Reader,

IMG_7824

My Granny Biscuit, found in an old album in the dining room, she was about 25 when this photograph was taken.

This is my Granny Biscuit, she is now 86 years old and is one of thirteen children. The story that she tells in the video is of my great Grandad Freeman(her father) and great Granny Mooney (my Grandads mother). My Granny discovered when it was nearing her wedding day that when Grandad Freeman was going off to war he had left his job as a postman. In the absense of Grandad Freeman, Great Granny Mooney took over the job of delivering thousands of letters from the front line to the houses of their loved ones, sometimes delivering good news but often not.

Great Grandma

Great Grandma Mooney

Great Grandma Mooney took on the role of a Postwoman and my Granny and Grandad found out near their wedding day

Granny and Granddad on their wedding day

Granny and Granddad on their wedding day

that their parents had had a connection from the war, in that they had exchanged jobs. I found this out on a night at the beginning of the process where we were having a game of scrabble ( that she won hands down)and wanted to know more.
I called my Granny and asked her if I could do an interview with her to learn more about it.
She found it incredibly hard to talk about but decided to go ahead and tell me all she knew. Here’s a section of the interview that I will show to the girls and see if we can use it in the show

Hope you have enjoyed having a look at a bit of my family history

Sincerely Yours,

Charlotte

xx

Waiting…

image

Cox, E 2014

Today has been our technical rehearsal so Jamee, Jess and Louise have been running around like headless chickens, whilst everyone else has been waiting in the green room to see if we are needed. So we are waiting, waiting for our four hours. I have currently supplied a pencil to Jess when she manically ran in asking for one.

Cox 2014

Cox, E 2014

I know we are not waiting that long but each time Jamee, Jess and Louise come into the room we all look up expecting news. We don’t know who they are going to need. I know I can’t really compare it but it reminded me of the women, mothers, daughters and sweethearts who would wait for the postman to arrive in the morning. They would either receive good news in the form of a letter from their boys and men, or they would have a knock at the door and receive some of the worst news they would ever hear. It must have been excruciating, I really don’t know how they would have coped, always wondering, always thinking and always missing them. Waiting, waiting, waiting…

 

Images

Cox, E 2014

The Second Minute

Birds Eye View Theatre, 2014.

With references throughout The Second Minute to West Bridgford, the River Trent and the Sherwood Foresters, I felt a sense of pride that these WW1 soldiers had come from the place where I grew up. The setting of a small local theatre worked well, making the play more intimate. It felt like a community of people coming together to watch their heritage being played out on stage. The relaxed atmosphere promoted conversation amongst the audience with people talking to the strangers around them about their own family stories of the war.

Works Cited:

Birds Eye View Theatre (2014) The Second Minute. [online video] Available from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JKUoeVTzPdo&feature=youtu.be [Accessed 28 May 2014].

Day, R (2014) The Second Minute – in production. [online] Available from http://www.nottinghamplayhouse.co.uk/whats-on/other/the-second-minute/ [Accessed 16 May 2014].

Day, R (2014) The Second Minute – in production. [online] Available from http://www.nottinghamplayhouse.co.uk/whats-on/other/the-second-minute/ [Accessed 16 May 2014].

Lewis, S. (2014) Sarah Lewis Theatre Designer. [online] Available from http://sarahlewisdesigns.tumblr.com/ [Accessed 16 May 2014].

Lewis, S. (2014) Some of the drawings I used to make the animations for The Second Minute. [online] Available from http://sarahlewisdesigns.tumblr.com/ [Accessed 16 May 2014].

Lewis, S (2014) The Second Minute set design. [online] Available from http://sarahlewisdesignportfolio.tumblr.com/post/83803970157/the-second-minute-by-andy-barrett-nottingham [Accessed 16 May 2014].

Nottingham Playhouse (2014) Nottingham Playhouse. [online] Available from http://www.nottinghamplayhouse.co.uk/ [Accessed 16 May 2014].

Terry O’Toole Theatre (2014) Terry O’Toole Theatre [online] Available from http://www.terryotooletheatre.org.uk/ [Accessed 16 May 2014].

Moving, beautiful, simple…

I have been completely moved by the news of the new art installation that will be opening up in August of this year. The “Sea of Poppies” as it has been named in the Telegraph. I adore art, it is one of my guilty pleasures and the simplicity of this soon-to-be stunning piece will be breath-taking.

poppy_2904247b

Telegraph (2014)

900,000 beautiful ceramic poppies.

Each one resembling a British or Colonial soldier who lost their life in the war.

They will then fill the moat that surrounds the Tower of London.

This installation was developed from Mr Cummins, who usually makes these beautiful ceramic flowers for garden ornaments. It was revealed that he took the title of the installation from a will made in the trenches by an unnamed soldier from Derby. Mr Cummins stated that:

“I read through an archive of the wills and came across one written by a man who said everyone he knew had been killed. He wrote of ‘blood swept lands and seas of red, where angels dare to tread’ (Telegraph 2014, online).

These beautiful works of art will fill the entire moat, creating a sea of red, a sea of loss, a sea of epic emotion.

Image and works cited from:
Telegraph (2014) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/world-war-one/10814268/Tower-of-London-moat-to-become-sea-of-poppies-to-mark-WW1-centenary.html [Accessed: 16/05/2014]

 

Dear the cast of The Second Minute

Dear Reader,
This week a few of the birds went to see The Second Minute by Andy Barrett
10258040_10203966198060280_848914292912224004_n

Mooney. C (2014)

Ellie and I could not fit in the car so we cycled and did some flyering on the way.
The play focused on letters being sent in the First World War ‘around nineteen thousand mailbags crossed the channel every single day and the art of letter writing enveloped the country, as people of all ages and from all classes tried to keep in touch with sons, brothers, husbands and lovers’.
Messages from the front line were sent from the soliders requesting their favourite food and telling their families they missed them. These are the types of letters my Great Granny Mooney had to deliver. Good news and bad. Letters and the delivering letter was crucial, it explored a mothers loss of her son.
SecondMinute_1

           Day. R (2014)

The story follows a mother called Laura who is a researcher and has discovered a solider called Tom’s letters. The honest accounts and struggle with Laura having one of Tom’s letters delivered a day recreates her relationship with her son in the war, who we find out died. She looks for something in Tom’s letters to give her hope and fill the void in her heart that her son dying has left.
We were so excited as a group to watch and experience how another theatre company dealt with a topic that was so sensitive. They performed with such a fantastic understanding of how important it was to share these stories that excited us all to perform our telling of the stories we feel are important to share.
Whilst there I asked the owner of the Terry O’Toole Theatre if she minded if we handed out flyers at the end to help market the show, she was so excited at the prospect of another centenary piece she encouraged our enthusiam.
The Second Minute is one to watch !!
Yours Sincerely
Charlotte
xx

Works cited
Day.R (2014)Terry O’Toole Theatre Website[online] Available from: http://www.terryotooletheatre.org.uk/events/the-second-minute/

Verbatim Theatre: ‘The Last Journey’

Verbatim Banner2

(Pearson, F. , 2014)

In the show we have composed several scenes where we have used our interviews with relatives and local residents as verbatim. The purpose of verbatim has been described by Hammond as follows: “Instead of adapting or repackaging experiences or observations within a fictional dramatic situation, a verbatim play acknowledges, and often draws attention to, its roots in real life” (2008, p1). The idea being that you display the interviewee through the actor by imitating the person’s pauses, inflections in their voice and use the precise words that have been recorded. The idea of verbatim is to present a sense of authenticity because “if you go out and collect evidence about people’s way of life, things are revealed to you which are completely extraordinary that you don’t see coming”(National Theatre Discover, 2014); a truth that can be presented to an audience.

Some regard verbatim as a form of theatre however, as Hammond and Steward point out, it is a technique within theatre (2008, p1). This is due to the nature of verbatim as a source of information which can then be configured into a narrative creating a drama. The verbatim may be edited for a particular section of the interview or can be stylistically edited through the use of other sounds or rhythms. Within our show Lauren has devised a few ways in which we present the verbatim. Some pieces are the original recordings, some are simply spoken to the audience (this is the common feature for the verbatim from the letters we are using) and also we have taken inspiration from Dan Canham and Stillhouse’s performance with using audio devices like an Ipod where we listen to the recorded verbatim and speak whilst listening .

The piece of verbatim that was designated to me was by a lady from the Eastholme Care Centre. We came to name this piece ‘The Last Journey’. I worked very closely with Lauren to decipher the rhythm and pace of the verbatim. We soon realised that the piece was by far the fastest pace out of all the verbatim and so it took me a while to grasp everything the lady said. One piece of advice that Dan Canham gave us when using verbatim was to treat the verbatim as a rhythm. So once I had practised speaking with the lady and the pace, Lauren helped me break the piece down into sections where there were pauses in the speech or slight changes in pace. This helped greatly with translating the inflections in the lady’s voice in my own voice for the performance. Another note Dan emphasised was to not to learn the verbatim like lines from a play, the idea being that we embody the voice of the person, it was natural occurrence and not forced.

Speaking someone else’s words at first can seem very strange. I found that to begin with, I would just say the words in my own voice. It wouldn’t have much tone or emotion involved and very dull, hearing myself anyway! Gradually you have to forget about what your own voice sounds like and truly listen to the other person’s to be able understand what it is you’re trying to do with the verbatim. Every detail in the track matters; the pauses, the changes, the accent, the inflections. That is what makes the person and that is what you need to be able to portray the person to the audience. The person is manifested/transferred through you to the audience. Below is the audio track of ‘The Last Journey’ verbatim that I will be performing in the show and also a couple of links to Lauren’s posts on how she directed the verbatim in ‘Sincerely Yours’.

 

 

(Chapman, 2014)

(Chapman, 2014)

Links to Lauren Kirby’s (Director) blogs on Verbatim:

A Guide to Verbatim

Stylising: Headphone Verbatim

 

Works Cited:

Hammond, W. and Steward D. (eds.) (2008) Verbatim Verbatim: Contemporary Documentary Theatre, London: Oberon Books.

National Theatre Discover (2014) An Introduction to Verbatim Theatre [online video] Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ui3k1wT2yeM, [Accessed 5th May 2014].

National Theatre Discover (2014) The Ethics of Verbatim Theatre [online video] Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=39JSv-n_W5U, [Accessed 5th May 2014].

 

Dear War Girls

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War Girls

‘There’s the girl who clips your ticket for the train,
And the girl who speeds the lift from floor to floor,
There’s the girl who does a milk-round in the rain,
And the girl who calls for orders at your door.
Strong, sensible, and fit,
They’re out to show their grit,
And tackle jobs with energy and knack.
No longer caged and penned up,
They’re going to keep their end up
‘Til the khaki soldier boys come marching back.There’s the motor girl who drives a heavy van,
There’s the butcher girl who brings your joint of meat,
There’s the girl who calls ‘All fares please!’ like a man,
And the girl who whistles taxi’s up the street.
Beneath each uniform
Beats a heart that’s soft and warm,
Though of canny mother-wit they show no lack;
But a solemn statement this is,
They’ve no time for love and kisses
Till the khaki soldier boys come marching back.
This poem by Jessie Pope we thought was a true representation of how hard the women worked in the war. After our working progress we discussed that it was a framing for a piece.
What I thought would be nice was to create a poem for the end which included the people who had created the piece, the women who helped us to create it and the women who inspired us in the first place. I devised the poem that you will hear at the end of the show.

I want to stage it so that the girls engagded with the poem so that the audience would. Every time the girls read out their roles or the process through the poem, you hear this incredible pride because we have come so far.
I hope you enjoy the poem and the show
Yours Sincerely
Charlotte
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Works Cited

Pope. J (1911) War Girls poem[online] Available from :http://allpoetry.com/poem/8605783-War-Girls-by-Jessie-Pope[Accessed on 15 May 2014)

A Day in the Lincoln Archives with Adrien

Dear Reader,

Adrien was the kind archive angel who helped us find hundreds of letters and pieces we could use in the show. We were able to learn more about the people who were from lincoln and talked of places that we had visited and experienced.
Harry Butt was one of the young men that we got a closer look at through being in the archives, we read his story and learnt alot about the humour he used and how through his humour he would be able to keep the morale of his sweetheart high.
Being in the archives was an experience, we couldn’t take pictures of the letters and we were only allowed pencil and paper to make sure we didn’t damage the letters or photos. The fact that we had to put anything we took out of the holdings onto protective pillows gave a good understanding of how precious and valued these letters were and that the adventure we are starting on was not one to be taken lightly. The letters contained historical accounts and we knew we had to proceed with caution and be senstive to the topic we had chosen.

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Ellie Lousise and I working in Lincolnshire Archives Mooney. C (2014)

Also in the last rehearsal we discussed that we were an all female cast and we had to take advantage of us all being female so we looked at what the women did in the war. World War One acted as a catalsyst of change for women and gave them independance that they had never previously experieneced. We found out through being in the Archives that women in Lincoln helped build the first tank ! Right outside the building we do all of our performances in.

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Lincoln Women who built the first tank outside of theLPAC

The were called Munitionettes and Conductresses and in the early months of the break out of war women became integral to the men who were on active service. ‘ Women eventually took on a very wide range of roles in the manufacture of weapons, including sowing the fabric on the aircrafts and barrage balloons’

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Mooney. C (2014)

These women played an integral part in the change of women in society, by not only ensuring the country’s surrival when then men were at war but also in the way women were perceived. They enabled a change in society that encouraged women to strive for goals they had never previously been able to experience. They made it possible for a group of ten girls to study at university and produce a piece such as this. We as a theatre company want to honor their sacrifice.

Sincerely Yours

Charlotte

xx


Works Cited

ROBEY collection. (1916) Handout sheet from the Lincolnshire Archives[online] [paper copy] Available at : http://www.lincolnshire.gov.uk/visiting/lincolnshire-archives/[Accessed May 5 2014]