I was presented with an exciting opportunity in the autumn, which was to put together a show for an event that was part of the Being Human Festival. Professor Vanessa Toulmin- Fairground and Circus Historian (amongst many other things) was putting on an event about ground-breaking historical, female and BAME performers.
The original idea was a circus cabaret, but after chatting with Vanessa, we decided to put together a show that explored identity, ethnicity, gender and community in circus. The result was a 30 minute show, performed by myself, Samara Casewell, Jess Abouzeid, Rebecca Soloman and Emily Rose Greenwood and directed by Eleanor Hooper. Making the show was a really enjoyable experience and a great opportunity for us as Sheffield performers to work together on a theatrical circus show. We used aerial, acrobatics, hand balancing, dance, text and personal narratives. The event itself- Sisterhood of the Ring, was sold out and included a talk and slideshow by Professor Vanessa that just scratche the surface of her extensive research and knowledge, a talk by Sarah Fielding of Invisible Circus, our show "Who Do They Think They Are?" and a post show discussion with questions invited by the audience.
It was a great night, although I was (as usual) too nervous to listen to the talks before our show. It was all very well received and the audience feedback was very positive. I was proud of our show, and even more pleased to be encouraged to apply for further funding to develop the performance. The funding application has just gone in, so fingers crossed, and watch this space!