London, Day 2

To be completely honest, I wonder how thorough I should be in my blogging because one thing I’ve realized, after having (almost religiously) journaled about my week in Chicago, I became lazy when it came to writing my reflections. Also, I sometimes write reflections in my physical notebook, so to repeat them here feels somewhat redundant.

So having said that, because I did write in my physical notebook today, just a brief rundown of things (I know I should make more of an effort writing thick descriptions, but it’s midnight. This schedule is really intense and I actually need to be more on top of the things I have to do):

  • We went to Rose Bruford. What a lovely campus. We met Jeremy Harrison and I was thrilled to meet another person who shared similar values and interests in terms of their direction in theatre-making. Harrison was very much interested in creating ‘with’ communities and from what I’ve noticed, much of his work is place-based and finding ways to make room for young people in whatever table usually dominated by adults.
  • This honestly feels like the direction I want to go in dissertation-wise. I genunely feel there’s something there.
  • I feel much more comfortable with the group now.
  • Different facilitators, different styles. Different people, different dynamics. In today’s session, there were moments where particular voices weren’t heard (I’ll write about this in detail in the final paper—if this makes it and nothing else more pertinent happens). A part of it I feel has to do with facilitation (was it conscious in Harrison’s part? I’m not quite certain; I don’t think so, because I feel the intent was to make theatre and he was showing us a way of devising—not facilitating. This isn’t an excuse, of course, but it is what it is. Another part of it has to do with stepping out and in though. We’re a group of educators/facilitators/teaching artists/artists/whatever-I-am and the fact that not everyone was sensitive to this is disconcerting.
  • I felt quite happy to share my piece in Filipino, though again, facilitation. It felt strange to not have been asked for the translation even after the free-form interpretation. I suspect though Harrison had more than just us on his plate. He’s handling a lot. Again, not an excuse, but I’m not too hung up on it. I have a lot of heroes to look at for excellent facilitation guidance.
  • We did brainstorming through objects mostly. It reminded me a lot of Helen’s work. (I’m lucky to have Helen’s training. I worry about the others, but as I said, different facilitators, different styles.)
  • I’ve connected with Tassos and am very much looking forward to meeting him and attending Coney HQ’s exchange on the 15th.
  • We watched “One for Sorrow” in the Royal Court Theatre. It was such a hot and humid theatre. That aside, it was, textually, a very intellectual play, but there was also something very primal about the other elements it introduced. I also like how it didn’t baby the audience. As a person of color though, I feel I read the show in a certain way that it’s more of a “Well, what did you expect.” (In a good way.) But there’s also a danger in that so-called, sneering moral high ground. I wonder if the predominantly white audience was discomfited. One thing I noticed was many of my colleagues were immediately deconstructing the play’s elements—but what about it’s discussions about race? (There is a lot of elements to analyze and play with though.) One of my colleagues was uncomfortable with the show and felt it could have pulled back a little. I wanted to quote part of the show where one of the characters went something along the lines of, “Being able to be a pacifist is a privilege.” What I’m interested in watching though is having the family to also be people of color, but perhaps belonging to a different ethnic group. There’s also a lot to unpack there.
  • Again, I feel working with people—whether in small group settings or in this trip in general—always feeds into the work I want to do in the future, so I’m doing my best to be sensitive with how I relate to others, like to listen, but not make myself invisible.
  • I am really curious about clotted cream and will have it tomorrow, I think,.