Thanks to Laura Mulvey from Forge Press for this lovely 5 star review of our show, performed at Off the Shelf Festival 2016 in Sheffield.
Thanks to the Coventry Telegraph for publishing this feature about ‘Beyond the Water’s Edge’ and to Ann Evans for writing this article for on-line magazine b-c-ing-u.com
Settle down with a cup of tea / coffee / *insert favourite drink* and enjoy!
New cast announced for beyond the water’s edge
We are delighted to announce the cast for our latest production Beyond the Water’s Edge – a brand new production featuring three actor musicians and poetry from around the world. The production will open at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry on Friday 1st July and will then tour nationally.
We welcome Jill Dowse, Dan McGarry and Nate Ryan to the team, and you can find out more about our cast via our Creative Team page
New production announced!
Midland Creative Projects is delighted to announce that we will be developing a new production for 2016-17.
Beyond the Water’s Edgewill feature contemporary poetry from around the world. Created in association with the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry and Bloodaxe Books, this production will showcase a wide range of provocative and extraordinary poetry from different countries and cultures.
Listen to a recording of Hundred Years’ War cast member, Jill Dowse, performing the moving poem, A Century Later, by Queen’s Gold Medal winning poet, Imtiaz Dharker; featured on BBC Radio West Midlands as a highlight of this year’s Birmingham Literature Festival. Simply click on this link and skip to 20:20 to listen.
NEW CAST MEMBER ANNOUNCED!
We are delighted to introduce Alan Magor, who will be joining the cast of The Hundred Years’ War: the Somme to Afghanistan for our autumn term performances.
Alan is a West Midlands based performer, with a wide range of performance experience. We are very pleased that he will be joining the team for our performances in October. You can find out more about our cast members by clicking here, and to find out about our October dates and venues, you can visit our dates page here.
New FILM released!
Watch an interview with our cast and director of The Hundred Years’ War: the Somme to Afghanistan, to hear about their experiences working on the production and their feelings on the poems they perform:
For Art’s Sake with Jonathan Davidson
Article featured in the Oxford Times, Thursday 2 July 2015:
Jonathan Davidson explains how he took an anthology of poetry and transferred it to the stage with The Hundred Years’ War.
In The Hundred Years’ War: the Somme to Afghanistan, three actors perform 35 war poems spanning the past century. The poems all derive from Bloodaxe Books’ magnificent anthology of war poetry, expertly compiled by Neil Astley, and include works from the First World War, Second World War, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and other conflicts around the world. Our performance takes a tiny selection of these poems and puts them on stage in a kind of fusion between poetry and theatre.
My involvement in this type of work goes back nearly 30 years. I saw Bertolt Brecht’s son-in-law, Ekkehard Schall, perform Bertolt’s poems in Leicester in 1986 and his performance stayed with me.
I directed a small performance of poems with two performers at college that same year, but it took another 15 years to be in the position to produce a full performance inspired by the spirit of Schall’s performance.
The Hundred Years’ War is the fifth show of this kind that I’ve produced. For our current production, we auditioned 20 performers and are working with just three; Miriam Edwards, Jill Dowse and Zachary Price.
Selecting 35 or so poems from an anthology of 500 is extremely difficult. They all have merit but we need to think about the practicalities; it would be strange to have only poems from the Second World War or Vietnam. Permission to use each poem also needs to be sought, and of course our three performers have to learn the poems by heart, and learn them with 100 per cent accuracy. There are poems from very different times that seem to speak to each other, that have more impact when placed together.
We’ve had some amazing feedback from our audiences for The Hundred Years’ War. People find it emotionally challenging, no doubt about that, but also gripping and evocative. I truly believe that putting poetry on stage in this way helps people to understand and appreciate these extraordinary works of literature in a whole new way.
The Hundred Years’ War: the Somme to Afghanistan is at The Old Fire Station, Oxford, on July 18.