Today I’m learning lines because I’m sharing an early draft of the Augmented script this week at a private, ‘industry’ sharing and in public at Pulse Festival in Ipswich.
Over five days last week I had an enthralling time, workshopping the script, ideas for direction, sound and movement with movement director Lucia Tong, dramaturge, Sarah Dickenson, director, Rachel Bagshaw and Sound Artist, Adrienne Quartly.
After eons working alone on my own in a room, it was exciting to have so many talented artists in the same room to support my work. We trod a line between playing with ideas and needing to get things done to share this week. I also worked with the fantastic and fun accent coach Elspeth Morrison. It was very interesting to speak with her and use her expert ears on my speech. My aim working with her was to mimic my own former accent.
There are still several layers to be added to the script and my performance of it, but we made a cracking start. We think we did anyway. I’m not sure what the response will be next week.
The material (coming from my own experience) is good, so whatever I write might seem ‘interesting’ to some audiences. I won’t be satisfied with that. I want people to come away saying it is good writing. I want it to be other things too. I’ve a way to go yet but I’m cautiously pleased with it so far. I’m very grateful to Sarah for pushing me. The script will be further on in July, when the Ovalhouse FiRST BiTEs happen. After the sharing this week I will hopefully have some subtitled clips.
One unexpected scene that I came up with during this scriptwriting R&D, features Jon Ronson, signing books. As with all the characters in the play, he comes out of it well. Yesterday, I just found out I’m not the only one who is writing about Jon Ronson signing books. Novelist friend, Paul Ewen told me about his forthcoming Francis Plug follow up novel, which also features Jon Ronson signing books. And apparently there is another non fiction book, by Megan Dunn where Jon Ronson is signing books. This is clearly a thing in literature.
I don’t know if my Jon Ronson scene will make it into the final draft that goes into production next year, but hopefully it will be at the performances at Ovalhouse in July.
At the beginning of last week, I read a short extract from the script at the brilliant Film Bunch event, a subtitled short film night. Photos to come soon. Thank you to the Film Bunch and the lovely audience there.
Massive thanks to Ovalhouse for letting me use ALL their spaces over the last month and to Poplar Union for the use of their Betty studio.
Don’t forget to book your tickets to the Ovalhouse sharings in July.