During our R&D at Live Theatre, we began the devising process with a first draft script written by Nicole Acquah.
Our approach to the script was to firstly map out the show: this involved pinpointing each section which are named after each stage in a cycle of burnout.
What is burnout?
Burnout is a term commonly referring to extreme exhaustion and fatigue. This can be emotional, mental and/or physical.
CYCLE OF BURNOUT
EXCITEMENT → LET'S WORK HARDER → FRUSTRATION → ILLNESS/DENIAL → APATHY → BURNOUT
The direction and devising approach to the text has involved rigorously considering and realising this cycle within movement, performance and design.
WHERE ARE WE AT?
Currently, we have a work in progress production which includes a 2nd draft script, most scenes fully realised and explored, devised transitions, a form/style for the show, core issues (activism, racism, classism and more) have been researched and brought into the space, set has been designed, sourced and built and sound design & lighting design has been considered.
FUTURE DEVELOPMENT (what we'd like feedback on)
THE FORM: we have started to unpack the idea of the performers making the stage to tell their story, becoming the other voices in the narrative and helping each other to get to the end. We want to explore this further, when these rules are broken and when they are actually in the story not re-telling anymore.
THE ROLE OF THE RADIO & THE FLOOD: The flood building throughout, seeping into their space, not being able to ignore it. Is Bridgette the only one who can hear the radio static?
CYCLES: continue exploring the presentation of cycles through movement, design and staging. 'This has happened before, it will happen again' - encompassing this idea of repetition.
SOUND DESIGN: The role of the loop station, can it be used more? When? The use of foley. Does fire and water sound the same? When do we change the sound of flood to sound of fire?
BURNOUT OF THE PLANET/BURNOUT OF THE PEOPLE: speak more to the wider context whilst harnessing within the narrative.