Little Red, a dance show I co-created and co-directed with Barrowland Ballet will be closing this year's Edinburgh International Children's Festival. 2nd - 4th June 2017 at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh.
Last year I made a new show called Little Boxes with director Amelia Sears and Theatre Centre (in London). The show was based on conversations with 10 and 11 year olds that took place across England (and I mean England, not the UK).
The show was a first attempt to try and question what gender is, what it helps us to do and when it stops us from doing. And how are the social structures in the wider world using gender to police the behaviour of little people.
It was an amazing project. There's a page on it here.
And sometimes I found it wholly depressing. I started to see the whole world as one big attempt to police the behaviour of little people and the people that look after them. Even the people that don't look after them, but just sometimes come into contact with them, or were once one themselves. So, basically, everyone. Unless you were born 56 years old, which I suspect some people might have been.
Then I got to take part in PUSH; a European funded project exploring gender and sexuality in work for kids.
And my brain exploded.
Especially when Yvon Bonenfant came and explained that in every child there is a desire to have what is extra-normal in them recognised and then celebrated. And that as artists we should be making work that is in itself extra-normal. Not reinforcing the social restrictions that are always put upon children and which by adulthood have often become rods of steel that will not bend, even when it makes us desperately sad; when we feel dead from it all.
And so I am on a mission; to find and try and theatricalise the extra-normal. This might mean I have to fall over in the supermarket sometimes, or make strange noises in the park, or dance in clubs and celebrate all that is weird and refuses to be normal.