Arc news: August 2013
Co-founder takes a final bow from Arc with the launch of international theatre project
After almost thirty years as Arc's Artistic Director and CEO, Carole Pluckrose's final project with the Company before heading off for pastures new is the curation of 'A Tale of Two Arc's - featuring an international visit from leading Polish theatre company, Teatr Arka.
Here's what Carole says about the project:
"I have been privileged to lead Arc Theatre since I co-founded the Company in 1984 with Clifford Oliver. My final project for Arc is the curation of a visit by Polish theatre company Teatr Arka to the Arc performance studios at The Malthouse, Icehouse Cultural Quarter in Barking. This is a project very close to my heart as it involves curating performances by Arka in Barking as they are on their way back from the Edinburgh Festival.
'The Ball at Stephen Hawking's' is a funny and poignant exploration of disability, intellect and sexuality and presented in the wonderful physical style so much the hallmark of Polish theatre. Indeed, I cut my teeth as a young actor in Poland, enjoying the intoxicating passion and soul of the Poles, who are generators of some of the most beautiful and profound theatre of the past fifty years and a definite primary influence on my practice.
"I now live in Barking - and indeed on my estate about 60% of my neighbours are young Polish families. They are here in the hope of making a better life for themselves and their children, but it’s not easy. Talking to them often as I do, reveals a sense of dislocation amidst hope of a better future, a fundamental homesickness not helped by a level of ostracisation and indeed racism, albeit at times unconscious - many of them just simply feel unwelcome.
"So with this in mind, and my own personal passion for Poland - I decided to take on this hair-brained idea to bring this 20 strong team of actors and creatives here into the heart of some of the Polish diaspora. But of course, it’s not a cheap thing to do - and I have no funding for it. But with the help of many friends and colleagues in Barking and Dagenham, it has become a reality. I would like to say an especial ‘thank you’ to Councillor Cameron Geddes, who has supported me in this adventure throughout by organising affordable accommodation and transport for our guests, and to Carl Blackburn for promoting the project extensively in his role as CEO of Barking and Dagenham CVS. This, coupled with a number of friends and colleagues offering their time freely to make it happen - well, made it happen! And indeed, my dear friend Amari who is cooking for our guests every night! Also a big thank you to Maciej Suszynski and Anula Wolynska for believing in the project and leading from the Polish end, flying here twice to support me and make it happen - simply the best!
"This is the first toe in the water too of a three-year strategy that I have proposed for Arc with other partners, which will culminate in a huge participatory trans-national community performance between Barking and Wroclaw, Poland in 2016, when Wroclaw will be the European Capital of Culture. Then hopefully, there will be real funding available!
"Thank you to all those of you who have helped me to make this happen. You will also be contributing to creating a small experience of welcome to these young Polish families, who are proudly making their way in our country, for themselves, and to contribute to society as a whole."
Tickets to all performances (priced £13.50 each) are now available for booking:
Arc Theatre in collaboration with Jasmine Street present
A Tale of Two Arcs
featuring Teatr Arka of Wroclaw, Poland
'The Ball at Stephen Hawking’s'
15, 16, 17 August 2013 at 7:30pm
The Malthouse Performance Studio at The Icehouse Cultural Quarter
Arc Theatre, 62-76 Abbey Road, Barking IG11 7BT
Direction: Renata Jasińska
Scenario: Jarosława Makus
based on the works by Stephen Hawking and Andrzej Falkiewicz
Cast: Michał Przybysz, Agata Obłąkowska-Woubishet, Alexandre Marquezy, Teresa Trudzik, Maciej Sybilski, Sylwester Różycki, Joanna Gierdal, Jan Kot, Tomasz Żytka, Alicja Idasiak, Dariusz Bajorczyk, Anna Rzempołuch, Andrzej Kusiak
Scientific Advice: Dr Iwona Mróz
Music: Łukasz Damrych, Maciej Sybilski
Sets and costumes: Sylwia and Maciej Hoffman
Choreography: Alessandra Donati, Agata Obłąkowska-Woubishet
'Ball at Hawking’s' Graphic Design: www.stricto.pl
For Arc Theatre in collaboration with Jasmine Street: Carole Pluckrose - Curator, Maciej Suszynski - Polish Partner and Cultural Strategist, Anula Wolynska - Polish Facilitator, Mariusz Gaj - Polish Partner, Chris Musgrave - Production Manager, Steve Billington - Technical Support, Amari Blaize - Crew Chef and Chief Bottle Washer, Michael Edwards - Arc Team Host, Val Jones - Volunteer, Ann Nixon - Volunteer
For Arc Theatre: Michael Ainsworth - Chair of Board, Clifford Oliver - Artistic Director, Nita Bocking - General Manager, Josh Cass - Director of Community Portfolio, Theresa Snooks - Communications Manager, Natalie Smith - Education Director
With special thanks to: Steve Drury - Icehouse Cultural Quarter Development Manager at Rooff, Chief
Superintendent Andy Ewing - Borough Commander and colleagues at Barking and Dagenham Police,
Councillor Cameron Geddes, Helen Jenner - Corporate Director of Children’s Services at London Borough of
Barking & Dagenham, Carl Blackburn - CEO at Barking and Dagenham CVS, Butler Court, Passenger
Transport at London Borough of Barking and Dagenham
This series of performances is kindly supported by contributions from the following people, to whom we are very grateful: Dolores Altaras, Sarah Argent, Jo Balcombe, Carl Blackburn, Liza Bound, Joan Brandon, Margery Brooke-Williams, Ria Butler Knowles, Aleya Chowdry, Tahlia Coombes, Sabine Craston, Peter Czajkowski, Maureen Doherty, Mark Eastwood, Cllr Cameron Geddes, Simon Grennan, David Harley, Emily Henwood, Joyce Higgins, Dorinda and Peter Hulton, Alison Jenkins, Kate Jensen, Pradeep Jeyaratnam, Val Jones, Thierry Lawson, Andy Lines, Gemma Lord, Bill Lovelock, Isobel Maddison, Peter Maddison, Kathleen Mason, Rachelle Moulai, Ann Nixon, Ted Parker, Edgar and Anne Pluckrose, Louisa Sliwa, Sheelagh and Clive Steward, Ian Teague, Peter Thomson, Pam Wells, Annie Wilkes, Annnette Wilson, Sarah Wood, Charlotte Worthington and our generous Anonymous Donors
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