Are you bored?

It’s Adam doing the blog this week. Hello. Gonna keep it simple, you might find it boring, but that’s kinda the point.

Here is a day by day summary of the last week in pictures.

MONDAY

special K picture

fenwick window

wetherspoons picture

TUESDAY

special K picture

departs

fenwick window

WEDNESDAY

special K picture

fenwick window

f and b

THURSDAY

special K picture

fenwick window

FRIDAY

special K picture

fenwick window

SATURDAY

special K picture

fenwick window

light parcan

SUNDAY

special K picture

fenwick window

tache me

D and D

That was my week, mostly dull and mundane. Hope yours was better.

Trying to forge a career in theatre proves difficult at times, you go through highs and lows, going in and out of projects which leaves you with chunks of time in between. In those chunks of time you try to find a little job to keep you going, and then you find yourself working lots of hours trying to catch up on your finances you lost looking for that job in the first place. Well thats what I think, do you agree?

Basically what I mean was that this week was a little boring.

But hey I have a mustache now, its only 37 days till xmas and Camisado Club have some exciting plans for next year.

Launch Pad

Hi all,

Lauren here blogging from the stunning Carbis bay in Cornwall. Eeee it has been an exciting week of planning preparing, filming and editing.

Carbis Bay

We have been working hard preparing our Wefund page to help fund our Autumn Tour. It is proving rather pricey to tour 10 people to The Custom’s House, HUB, and New Diorama in London so any pennies you could spare would be massively appreciated!! Your money will help pay for our insurance, travel, accommodation, autumn print and van hire to name a few. Moreover we are wanting to start as we mean to go on and pay our wonderful techies and the wonderful Stan who will be standing in for the brilliant Bob at New Diorama. We have all worked for free and are determined that no one will have to do that for Camisado Club. Please visit our Wefund Page thank you so much!

We are unbelievably excited to launch our new shiny website this week. The fantabulous Charlotte has done a stunning job thank you so so so much! She has been so patient as we have deliberated Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 10.43.22and gone back and forth over logos, colours, the right pictures to use etc. Charlotte you are a star and we really could not have done it without you. Look out for it this week…

We have spent many an hours in the AV room editing our trailer, this has proved more tricky and time consuming then we first imagined. I haven’t been in Newcastle for the last few days so an almighty shout out and thank you to the rest of the gang whom have been going to NS between shifts and after work to get it finished and perfected. Thank you!!

Now usually I sit here procrastinating, wondering what to write about and tell you. However this week I feel compelled to write to you. Actually this week has been a great week however last week I felt the need to write and although it is now slightly out of date, it got me thinking and I would like to share it with you. These are all my own views and musing I really hope no one feels patronised or anything they are just some things I have been thinking about  and needed reminding of myself.

It is the day before the Referendum and I feel a heady mix of both excitement and anxiety. I spent a lot of time in Scotland last week and in Glasgow there is a real sense of hope and excitement. A tangible buzz and happiness and a belief in creating a better, fairer place. It was hugely inspiring and I feel privileged to have witnessed it. However I also feel a sense of sadness; a sadness I can’t quite put my finger on. I love Scotland, I am a 1/4 Scottish, I had a wonderful year, met some incredible people and fell in love in Scotland so where does this sense of sadness come from? I’m genuinely not sure. A sense of not being part of it? An anxiety about change? A sense of having no control over something big that genuinely matters? An anger at myself in not being more educated in the matter and therefore not being able to passionately fight for what I believe in? Being unsure of what I believe in? It has made me question why I haven’t, laziness? feeling overwhelmed? No time?  Like I said I’m genuinely not too sure. maybe a mixture of all the above. But it got me thinking about decision making and taking action.

We are constantly making decisions. From the most simple tiny ones to some pretty epic ones. I go on my gut, my heart, my head and my mood. The decisions we make are important and maybe this week I haven’t made the best ones. Now forgive me I am not trying to preach or patronise anyone but rather just share some of the things I have observed and learned.

I have learned I need to question more; if you feel something isn’t fair or you don’t agree with it. Question it. Hopefully many a positive things will come from that, but regardless of whether the other person takes it well or not you will still make discoveries.

Often I don’t think there is a definite right or wrong decision maybe a more positive or constructive one but not categorically right or wrong. Be courageous in your decision and trust your gut! Every time I have ignored it I have regretted it.

Trust your instinct and your gut but also do your homework ( something I haven’t always done recently). I have felt a lack of purpose this week and I think it’s because I have just let things happen without taking action or bothering to do my research and have ended up feeling lazy and directionless.

Be open. Chat to those who share similar views . But make time and space to speak to those with other views. I have had some of the most fascinating chats recently with people with very different views.

Like acting be courageous in choices and commit to them. I have definitely lacked courage at times last week and have been left feeling wishy washy and drifty. Act on your decisions if you have an email you need to write to said director, bloody do it (note to self!) There is a huge possibility something good will come from it, but the situation won’t change without action.

And finally my bloody brilliant, crazy, one-of-a-kind Gran says you need three things in life for happiness; 1). something/someone to love, 2). a goal and 3). something to look forward to.

So if like me you’re felling a little low right now make a goal and then set up actions you need to do to achieve it. Also hold your nerve and play the long game; little positive actions over time = success. Inaction is the worse thing to do; do something, anything no matter how small. Work on an accent, draft an email, see a play, anything but do something!

Good luck! and remember it’s okay to feel lost/low  sometimes (sometimes I forget that).

And finally please remember to look out for our new website and if you can spare any pennies for our Wefund we would massively appreciate it! This Sunday we head to the amazing hidden gem that is the HUB. If you are in Leeds on the 5th October please come down, it would be fab to see you there.

Have a great week!

Big love,

Lozxx

Cheeky bit of Touring

Its Adam here, I’ve come out of retirement to write a blog. Hope you enjoy.

In the wake of the Edinburgh festival and the experience still fresh in my mind, I embarked on the other side of the coin to getting your work seen, and that is rural touring. And by that I mean a tour of the greater North-with-an-exception-of-the-occasional-date-in-the-south.
So far after the festival I have visited a few venues and have been encouraged, but also slightly unhinged by them.

It’s hit and miss, and please excuse the lame description. Sometimes you know its going to be a good day, and others you know its going to be bad with just little things that unnerve you; low ticket sales? Late arrival for the tech? The space isn’t how you imagined? Though some of these are in you’re control.

Sometimes you have to make compromises, and that should be expected. Each venue is different, they’re not always specifically a theatre, some are town halls, community centres which inhabit many other events, not specifically the arts. Their ideals of how things are run can be very different. Simply, things such as offering you a cup of tea on arrival, or even having time to greet you.
Don’t be disheartened by this, crack on. Bitch and vent quietly, yes, if it makes you feel better but everyone has agendas and while yours may be to make this show as good as it can be, others will be, simply, to just go home.

We had a fantastic time at The Customs House, the people in the building were welcoming, there was a little stand in the foyer with information and pictures about the show, the technicians were merry and helpful.

image-1 Factors such as this spur you on into the performance, it gives you that ‘lets fucking smash this’ thought, commonly a phrase I use, yours may be something different but I feel like it kind of means the same thing. We got a fantastic audience, more than any of us expected. And it does go well, and you do ‘smash it’ and it gives you great confidence to take away, but the next venue and the next challenge will be around the corner.

Venues such as Square Chapel in Halifax was one that wasn’t even on my radar, I wasn’t aware of its existence. Tucked away in the Yorkshire moors, away from the Northumberland Hills, lies a little gem. It’s a great red bricked building, reminiscent of the cotton industry that thrived there many years ago, facing a great green moor and the small train station.

Picture of the Dead to Me show in Halifax

Picture of the Dead to Me show in Halifax

It’s a great versatile space (above), that is slowly having more shows programmed there, and is the central point to a new building development to have a creative village build around it. Its encouraging I think, some people are investing in venues like this, and bringing in audiences to these smaller towns so they may not have to venture out to the nearest city to see work. And I’m sure there are others out there, if you know them then please share it to us?

From these rural venues there is an audience that are willing to pay and come see work, and I feel that there are an untapped one too. I’m from a desolate town called Retford where the only touring theatre we get there are the Chuckle Brothers and Sooty and Sweep, so maybe there is hope after all.

Maybe its not about trying to wiggle your way into the big venues, maybe its about getting into lots of the smaller ones and moving forward from there.

You may feel different, though I probably will in a month’s time, who bloody knows.

To pitch or not to pitch…that is the question!?

Hi Everybody!

It’s Jess here on the blog. This week 4/8 of Camisado Club have been busy at Meet The Programmers at Live Theatre pitching our show Send More Paper (we even bought a little speaker) and schmoozing outrageously (something I am just getting used to).

We kept our pitch short but sweet and precisely 3 minutes long as we were terrified of hearing the ding of the bell (which means your time is up).

I was also super proud (and slightly jealous) of the rest of the Camisado team at Meet The Programmers with their very own fan-dabby-dosey show pitches. This is what they have been up to.

The splendorous Caroline Liversidge is scared she is a workaholic, but she’s working hard to overcome it.

A Living is about how some of us spend our lives trying to find the perfect balance between making a living and actually living.  An average person will work over 97,464 hours over their lifetime. That’s the equivalent of working over eleven years solidly. Is it worth it?

The show is an honest, funny and intimate piece that draws on real life interviews, home truths and Caroline’s own fear of idleness. Performed by Caroline Liversidge, directed by Anna Ryder. Keep your eyes peeled for future show dates which are to be confirmed.

Thee Jamie Tansley says that there is a dead body on Google Maps. There’s a tiger prowling a petrol station and a father playing with his daughter on a roadside. There’s an old man taking walk and SOS signs from a war torn country. If you know where to look, you can see the most mundanely remarkable things.

9EYES is an examination of our lives. Of our multiplicity and how our digital lives are exposing us. Our digital selves are not something external to reality but a part of it: an invisible yet constantly present layer intertwined with the physical environment. Our humanity is newly visible and tangible.

What exactly does it mean to be human in the digital age? The show aims to highlight ways in which our digital lives are actually making us more human – opening up existence beyond what we can imagine. It has given our empathy and activism new platforms; allowing many of us to be uncensored version of ourselves. But also how it puts us at risk and is exposing us to aspects of ourselves and material that is more than dubious. The seeming anonymity of the digital world allows us to indulge in behaviors which are damaging to ourselves and others.

If we continue to view our digital space as ‘other’, we will be enslaved in a way we never expected. Show dates are to be confirmed but we will keep you posted.

And last but certainly not least the wonderful Luca Rutherford  has a show Learning How To Die which will be performed at the Ovalhouse in London from the 29th October until the 1st November. She is right at the very beginning of her development process and is currently researching, free writing and speaking to many different people to develop her show which will culminate with a showing four work-in-progress performances.

This is what she has to say about it ‘So it is about learning how to die. It is about accepting our own death and looking at our mortality and in doing this looking at the life we have. So it is learning how to live by learning how to die. It is not a show about grieving or being mawkish. I want to challenge the way the western world talks about death. I think that we are scared of talking about it and I do not think this is healthy. I think we only talk about death when it is upon us and this just creates sad conversations. Death is inevitable and in this there is something invigorating and inspiring. We are finite beings and if we remember this we may use our time to the best of our abilities and in a kinder way.’

Also if you missed Camisado Club performing Send More Paper at The Customs House then we have great news for you. We will be performing at SlungLow The Hub in Leeds on Sunday 5th October and also for two nights only at New Diorama Theatre on the 5th and 6th November (cough…book tickets here).

We will soon be announcing a WeFund campaign to ask all you kind folk to help support Camisado Club in taking Send More Paper on an Autumn tour. Any donation would be much appreciated whether it be £1 or 1p. As the old cliche goes ‘every little helps’. We will keep you all posted.

See you soon

Jess x

Roses Are Red, Violets Are Blue, Newcastle’s Class And South Shields Is Damn Fun Too

Hello happy campers. It is Luca Puca here.

                                                                  pig

I am going to tell you all about our week and I hope you find some of it interesting.

First of all…. how are you?

I hope you have had a number of smiles this week.

Thank you for taking the time to sit down, or stand up or position yourself in whatever shape and form so takes your fancy at this present moment and read the following words about Camisado Club. We appreciate your reading time.

Our week….Well it started off with a meeting far from boring. Post Edinburgh we managed to collect our brains and drag them out of their hiding places. We grouped ourselves into a room and stunk it out for a good few hours. Caroline inspired us with Carl Sagan’s words on our universe and the beautiful futility of human existence.

That was Tuesday.

Friday soon rolled into play …along with it our first performance at The Customs House.

                                                                      caimsado                                                      

Friday morning bright and breezy we arrived at Northern Stage and threw ourselves around in Stage 3.

                 [Camisado Twins]                Camisado Twins

We were joined for a wee bit by the lovely Mister Calvert who shared his wisdom and direction with us. Midday saw us bumble into a van that we stole from Northern Stage. A The-Borrowers-type-of-steal; we did return it. We battled the satnav and arrived in South Shields to be met by the operatic vocals and warm smiles of Marti.

                                            caroline cami Caimboo

The next five hours were spent teching, setting up and as always hammering away at our precious tables!!

                                                      tables

In between the lights, drills and ladders we managed to grab a quick bite to eat. I had a delicious lunch of smoked mackerel…a never ending joy…a lunch that just didn’t want to end…so it lingered…wherever I went, whatever I touched, whenever I opened my mouth in merry conversation everyone was kindly reminded that mickey mackerel had given his life for my culinary delights…much to everyone’s joy.

After a pack of Airwaves seven o’clock soon struck. We jumped into costume and ran around the space. With a good tongue twister or two and a company planking plank off we were ready to go. Seven fourty five and the doors opened as we hid behind the studio curtains for a never-ending fifteen minutes. Then. Bam. Blackout and hello Send More Paper. Smashing. Was great fun and a generously sized audience. Thank you to everyone who brought their face along to The Customs House and parked their derieres on a seat to share those fifty five minuets with us.

Coming Up Next:

We are in the middle of making a trailer for our WeFind to get us down to London for our two performances at the New Diorama Theatre, Wednesday 5th and Thursday 6th November. More on this in the next couple of blogs.

Check Out:

Get your lovely selves down to Northern Stage this week to be  mentally, culturally and socially bamboozled  by I Promise You Sex And Violence.

In Praise of Theatre Technicians

It had been a sunny afternoon, the train journey had seen us full of high spirits, and now that the sun was setting, the technical volunteers and I were stood nervously in a circle with a large number of big, hairy, tattooed, burly men in massive Dr Marten boots. As someone with a muscle to bodyweight percentage that is embarrassingly low, I was more than a little intimidated, especially with the prospect of a week in the company of these scary people and being expected to haul big heavy things about, use power tools, and climb tall wobbly ladders. I could already hear the sneers as I thought about all of the steel decking that I wasn’t going to be able to carry.

I am of course describing my first evening in Edinburgh, 2 weeks before the festival was to start. We were stood in the cavernous main hall of King’s Hall, where the friendly Northern Stage management staff had deposited us and told us to build them a venue.
“I am but a wimpy actor,” I told myself. “What on earth have I gotten myself into?”

As the two massive articulated lorries with a theatre packed into them arrived, we started unloading them. It started out easy…plastic chairs, planks of wood, some unwieldy lengths of scaffolding… And just as I thought I might survive the night I spied it – my nemesis, the steel deck. If you’ve never encountered the stuff, steel decking is 8’x4′ platforms that are used to build stages. As you can tell by the name, it’s made of steel, and is really dashed heavy and awkward. We were going to use it to build a new floor surface over most of the church’s existing floor. There was loads of it.

The professional steel deck carriers started throwing the large panels about with apparent ease. I struggled and heaved and managed as well as I could, and I heard no sneers or tuts. In fact, to my relief, the big, scary, burly men offered the other volunteers and I advice on the best lifting techniques, told us not to try to carry more than we could, but still kept handing us them to carry. By the end of night, I was bruised and aching, my hands were numb, my muscles (muscles I never knew existed) were in a state of shock but I had a smile on my face. I’d toiled, I’d struggled and I’d survived…pride in tact.

The rest of the week was much the same. I carried things, I used power tools and I climbed up tall, wobbly ladders. It struck me how masculine the atmosphere was. The big, burly men were no longer scary, they were all very friendly. The moment that endeared them to me the most was when I realised that all of the masculine shows of strength and power tools was all for a team effort to make a theatre, a place for wimpy actors like me to recite shakespeare and wheel about on rickety tables. And these people have such a passion for it, and a need to make it perfect. It was the realisation that if all they had wanted to do was carry big things and use loud tools, they could have gone into any number of professions, but they chose to go into theatre, the same profession I chose. And that is when I realised that,
“Yes, I am but a wimpy actor, but I’m glad I got myself into this.”

Once the church hall had been transformed almost beyond recognition into a fully functioning theatre, and the familiar Northern Stage office faces arrived to set up the box office and hang bunting and we were adding the final touches, such as installing coloured festoon lights into corridors and plugging in the outdoor floodlights that made the building shine at nighttime, the artists began to populate the building. The theatre builders morphed into technicians.

Being an actor and working in theatres, you learn to recognise a techie at a glance. Most common traits include:
– a look of stressed grumpiness
– slouched shoulders
– a roll of coloured tape somewhere about their person
– 9 times out of 10 they are wearing shorts.

Before my stint in Edinburgh I’d always been a little scared of techies. They always seemed to get annoyed at actors, weren’t particularly talkative, and did things I didn’t understand and used language that I had no idea what it meant. I felt silly doing warm ups on stage and talking about my character’s emotional journey while they were in the room in case they thought I was just another prima donna luvvie.
By the end of the 5 weeks in Edinburgh, I found myself completely understanding everything: the stressed grumpiness, the slouching, the constant need for coloured tape, the quietness, the jargon and the magic processes of making the lights come on and the sounds be loud. I could even see why you might wear shorts in December. I learned about the magic properties of gaffa tape and cable ties – they are what hold most theatres together.
The reason for all of these things is it’s a damned tough job. It’s tiring, it’s stressful, it’s complicated, it’s hot and it’s sweaty. And when I’m being an actor or a theatre maker I’m so caught up in my little bubble and getting in the zone and being all “actory” that I forget about all of the work that other people put into shows.
My point, in a very roundabout and babbling way, is that theatre technicians are amazing people. They are clever, passionate, hard working and physically strong. They deal with demanding directors, clueless actors, meticulous health and safety officers and unpredictable technological glitches. I spent a month in awe of these people and their work and now that I’ve had a small taste of what it is to be a techie, I now feel I have earned the right to be a bit “actory” because I can appreciate the other side of it, too. I can lie on my back in the middle of the stage and concentrate on my breathing or stretch out in yoga positions (the easy ones, in my case) without shame, because I know that my doing that is no more important than the techies checking the lights and the speakers work or the ushers checking the seats for litter, or the marketing team proof reading the flyers or the finance team balancing the books. It’s all important.
Back to reality now….
Have a good week!
Caroline x

20140831-173115.jpg

Exhileratingly Exhausting!

Hello,

Hannah blogging for you this week and attempting to put into words a week that has blown my socks off! 

We have been looking forward to performing Send More Paper at Edinburgh for some time but this week if finally arrived and my goodness was it worth waiting for.

20140821_111055

Silly me thought, ‘You know what, I think I’ll pop up to Edinburgh for a few days and catch a few shows, fit in some rehearsing and do the show, no problem’. Wowzer, Edinburgh threw it all at me, I saw some truly incredible pieces of theatre. I don’t feel that my describing them would ever quite do them justice; my heart was broken, faith in humanity restored, tears shed, jaw dropped and laughter exploded! Some of the shows were; Every Brilliant Thing, Lungs, Bonenkai and Snakes The Musical. Now back in Durham I am exhausted in the best possible way, and I haven’t even told you about our show…

20140821_112550SO… we gave ourselves a couple of hours on Wednesday and Thursday to recap the show, work on our tweaked opening, make sure scene changes were slick and get back into character. We arrived at St Margaret’s House, a recommended rehearsal space, with a selection of props and costumes. Yes, we looked a little odd on the bus, but who doesn’t during the fringe? There was such a buzz being back together and performing. It was also a lovely break from the admin side of things; we don’t claim to be experts but we are certainly honing our skills at funding applications and tour planning.  

Rehearsals went well, there was a joy in the room, no matter how long we 20140821_154143have been apart we quickly settle back in to working as an ensemble. After some company planking led by Adam we cracked on with a line run and then into tweaks and character work. It was great to welcome Mark Calvert and Meghan Doyle to the room on Thursday, helping to give another perspective on the work. 4pm on Thursday we excitedly packed up, ran through the storms and headed to Kings Hall to begin our technical rehearsal.

Northern Stage technical volunteers Sian and Beatrice were fabulous at running our sound and lighting for us, which with only two hours technical time and a rather tech heavy piece was a mountainous experience! Thankyou, we owe you a pint, or two! They did sterling jobs, and thanks to Mr Sam Vivash who orchestrated the technicalities of the technical run and kept us all calm.

We had two rather perilous moments at which we held our breath and tried not to panic. We have been having some trouble with our tables, particularly their wheels. I remember many months ago hearing a suggestion ‘tables on wheels’ and thinking how fabulous it would be. Alas many times the wheels have broken, snapped, twisted and come clean off (only once during a performance). Unfortunately this happened twice during our time pressured technical rehearsal which was very frustrating, but everyone pitched in hunting for screws, replacement wheels, and torches to light the DIY wheel tweaking and we had them fixed. Fingers crossed with cracked on with the tech run and fortunately had no wheel incidents during the show.

It’s been a tricky point, working with an interactive set has brought highlights and beautifully intricate opportunities hand in hand with rehearsal time interrupted with broken wheels and logistics. There seems to be a line between having the set work for you and you working for the set. Don’t get me wrong we love the capabilities that the tables have brought to the piece, but looking to our next project and the tour of Send More Paper is there anything we can do to minimise time spent on this aspect of our work. Do we think the benefits outweigh the difficulties for using a similar system in the future or is this something you can’t be sure of until you try it? I think that its most likely that these difficulties don’t arise until you are well into the rehearsal or even touring process. I think its important to have your thoughts fully on the work and not concerned in what may or may not become a problem. There was a discussion when the wheels broke to whether we should adjust some movements in the piece to avoid moving the tables with people on them, thus avoiding a breakage. Mark encouraged us to keep it as it is and not let the set dictate the show. It felt all too easy in a moment of panic to change things, but I was pleased to hear a calm voice of reassurance. The show went well, tables behaved, we had a wonderful audience and I don’t think I’m alone in saying its exhilarating to perform with such an fab group. I’m sure there will always remain slight technical niggles when touring a piece but it’s brilliant to be a member of such a supportive, passionate company that cracks on, pulls together and strives to make the work the best it can be. 

20140821_184513Edinburgh truly lived up to expectations and I am proud to have been part of the 2014 Fringe. Thank you SO much to everyone who helped us get the show to Edinburgh and all who come to see it, it was fabulous to have such a wonderful audience. The show is now on tour, first stop Customs House, South Shields produced by DepArts, if you missed us at Edinburgh, get yourself along we would love to see you there.

Cheers

Hannah