THE CLEANSING OF CONSTANCE BROWN presented by STAN'S CAFE
@ A E Harris, 1st - 19th March, 18.30 & 20.30 (running time 70min)
(no perfs. Sundays or Mondays)
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Simple Maths started life as a theatre game designed for the Birmingham Federation of
Youth Theatres; it became an hour long show in which five people change the order in
which they sit on six chairs facing the audience.
The piece has no conscious narrative, no text and no mime. Stripped of so many possibilities for dramatic expression Simple Maths forces theatre to reveal its fractal quality. There remains drama in Simple Maths but it lies at a detailed level, in a range of personal ticks, smiles, glances and yawns carefully placed through the show.
With no obvious models to follow audiences are left to develop their own viewing strategies, most developing a series of fragmentary narratives from the juxtaposition of details they are presented with. This process is reminiscent of the text device in Ocean of Storms, but here the fragments are not designed to contribute to any master narrative.
The delight and risk of Simple Maths is that it contains no mechanism for self defence. If audiences make a connection with the show they find it highly rewarding, packed with incident, personal resonance and intellectual stimulation. For those who fail to make the connection, perhaps watching the same performance, there is little conventional 'entertainment' to carry them to the end.
Possibly the most successful performance of Simple Maths was at Preset, in Nottingham, as part of the "Body, Space, Image" season where the dance setting appeared to contextualise the performance to good effect.
Devised and Performed by
Directed by: James Yarker
Composer and sound operation: Jon Ward
Design: Miguel Angel Bravo
Lighting design and operation: Simon Gowan
Publicity photos: Mark Taylor
Production photos: James Yarker
Graphic Design: Simon Ford
Simple Maths received financial support from:
Arts Council of England, West Midlands Arts & Birmingham City Council
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