Saturday, 23 May 2009

The God of Small Things.

The day after the day after and time to reflect a little more carefully on Community Project. As with all good practice it's the magical moments of connection that offer the greatest meaning and value and wake us all up.

There was a moment in the show where tribeswoman Ebonee enlists the audience to help solve the riddle of the Sphinx - to the increasing frustration of Harpu, who has been looking throughout the quest for an opportunity to prove herself.

'We've done it!' shouts Ebonee once the work is done.

'You mean you've done it!' says Harpu 'It's not fair I said I was going to do this from the very start! And you've ruined it.' With that she stomps off in a sulk. Ebonee goes to follow, but warrior Nailha stops her and says

'Don't worry, she'll sort herself out!' The audience, understanding Naliha's wisdom, turn away and the quest continues without Harpu.

During the second show on Thursday one small boy dissented and refused to continue. He didn't cry. He didn't say anything - he just stood still looking up the path down which Harpu had disappeared. It was a brave act, he stood alone. The rest of the audience moved on; still the boy stayed. His parents encouraged him; still he stayed. I told him Harpu would be okay; still he stayed. Eventually, with the rest of the audience disappearing out of the sight, he was picked up and carried to the next scene - but his eyes remained fixed, searching the park for his lost friend Harpu.

It struck me that for all the conversations we'd had about the best way to script and handle this moment of playground negotiation, we'd never once discussed the possibility that anybody would think going after a hurt friend might be more important than saving Kalku, but still the small boy stood still. He was loyal and he was right.

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