Last Friday I was lucky enough to attend one of the final rehearsals with the cast of 'Crab Bucket' and spent some time with them on the movement sequences that appear in this very clever and ultimately very moving piece of theatre.
The writing and creative composition of this piece has been lead by James Rushbrooke and has been produced by recently formed Absence of Apathy [http://www.absenceofapathy.co.uk/](an arts organisation steered almost single-handedly by Flora Thompson actor/producer extraordinaire). The people leading this production are not only creatives to watch out for in their own right, but function as a duo as well, heading Imagine Theatre in Cirencester; [http://www.imagine-theatre.co.uk] a theatre school for 10 - 19 year olds who may be interested in a career in the theatre industry. And who better to learn from than the people in London, making engaging contemporary theatre right now? It would not be a stretch to call James and Flora remarkable practitioners, who are pushing theatre and the didactics of theatre, but I am pleased that I am also able to call them my friends (i.e. extremely-long-term-collaborators).
'Crab Bucket', although written by James, began from techniques of improvisation with this talented cast, which mean that the characters are all rooted within these specific actors. The gritty narrative formed from this contemporary way of writing, and weaved amongst this risky take on feminism are streaks of fairytales and their modern day uses. The other element that is explored and drew me further towards this play is the unique way that James has handled the directing process of 'Crab Bucket'. I'll write a little more about this next week, because not all of the cast have been debriefed on the whole process yet!
Another thing this opportunity allowed me to do was really develop my skills as a modifier, as I was welcomed to provide feedback and staging changes. For me, this meant balancing my intuition of the physicality or movement sequences with time constraints and changes that are plausible to execute. Although knee deep in my MA, I strangely feel as though I've been directing less, and pursuing other paths, so it has been lovely to dip back into these waters, albeit for a brief period of time.
Well done to the team, all the cast - and the production creatives, Oliver Savage for his - as always - spectacular lighting (my peer on the ATP MA) and Yoan Segot for his evocative sound design.
Tickets to see this show are still available, and as you can tell, I recommend it:
10th-14th of February at Waterloo East Theatre, 7:30pm. Tickets £10 in advance, or £12 on the door.
Shout out to Gerald who runs this space, and is an all round great guy.
Book tickets here: http://www.waterlooeast.co.uk/crab%20bucket.html