Dear Theatre Community of Brisbane,
Can you believe it is the 3rd March 2017 already? I bet you have dozens of things you have done (PAUSE: if your response is ...no, I haven't! I challenge you to make a list of what you have participated in for the last two months! You will surprise yourself).
Time is going so fast. This morning as I was creating my mandala--we have a facebook group of artists who post daily mandalas online as a "ritual of waking to the day"... The image above is part of my mandala today...and it has given me pause. This week I had planned carefully and when I look back over the week it has included so much more than my planning catered for. Now many of us know through experience that when we reflect on our lives we can see more clearly what is happening. And we all know that John Lennon line, "Life is what happens while we're busy making other plans".
Reflecting on my week I can see where solo experiences such as writing a script opened up when having conversations that had nothing to do with the script. Ideas resonated, floated in without too much effort. After writing sessions I walked to the library and pursued the three or so bookshops there and found a brilliant book "The Untethered Soul" Here is a cut and paste from the writer Michael Singer's website:
The New York Times bestseller everyone is talking about -
What would it be like to free yourself from limitations and soar beyond your boundaries? What can you do each day to discover inner peace and serenity? The Untethered Soul-now a New York Times bestseller-offers simple yet profound answers to these questions. Whether this is your first exploration of inner space, or you've devoted your life to the inward journey, this book will transform your relationship with yourself and the world around you. You'll discover what you can do to put an end to the habitual thoughts and emotions that limit your consciousness.
By tapping into traditions of meditation and mindfulness, author and spiritual teacher Michael A. Singer shows how the development of consciousness can enable us all to dwell in the present moment and let go of painful thoughts and memories that keep us from achieving happiness and self-realization. (http://untetheredsoul.com/untethered-soul)
The messages from this book has helped shaped the ending of "He Dreamed A Train", which is opening in July at Brisbane Powerhouse, directed by Benjamin Knapton, along with EVE, another of my plays, co-devised with Leah Mercer. Both Travis Ash (my youngest son) and I are performing both shows.
I also saw three performances this last week, all different and all enthralling in their own way: Flick, Macbeth and Single Asian Female. What I adore watching is the interaction on stage between the players and how the actors build the metaphor of the play through movement and gesture. I also observed a rehearsal of one of the plays rehearsing at QT at the moment..."Once in Royal David's City". Even though it is only the second week of rehearsal, the power of the play is vibrantly evident. Delicious watching the playful nature of Sam Strong in the rehearsal room and it reminds me of the importance of play when rehearsing...it doesn't necessarily have to be 'fun' (often it is not) but it needs to be 'playful', full of respect and trust...that's what I observed today.
My writing week has come to an end at Queensland Theatre, not quite a week, with other obligations slipping in to two of those days, but regardless, it was a terrific discipline and a friendly environment in which to work. Thank you Queensland Theatre for your continued support of independent artists.
We are very aware that in Brisbane unless you are an independent artist, your working gigs are often few and far between, waiting for the next audition. As an independent artist we engage in creating work, either as the primary creator or someone who works with others to achieve a collaborative idea. I think Brisbane offers opportunities in this regard more than any other city. We can find space in which to work: if you are needing rehearsal space, contact Queensland Theatre...they are very open to sharing resources if there is a gap in the booking sheet. Metro Arts has space for reasonable cost, Backbone has space now in their wonderfully alive bowling club East Brisbane.
So the week is coming to an end, and tomorrow two groups gather for the first time this year: the first group is the National Artistic Team of Queensland Theatre. We are coming together again to discuss this year and next.
In the evening the sessional staff at QUT Acting are gathering, hosted by Andrea Moor. Andrea has done a sterling job in actively building community with the sessional staff, because lets face it, sessionala make up the bulk of university teaching now.
Wishing you all a fabulous and creative weekend,