Just over a week ago I joined two of my good friends in Cardiff to present an evening of performance with Cardiff Fringe Cafe. Lauren Burch performed her great show The Conversation, which you can catch at Camden Peoples Theatre in early May (ticket link here) ands there was some fab new work by Chris Johnson.
This was the first time I had ever performed Rubatosis to strangers…and it was terrifying! I had a small room set up off to the side of the main performance space which had no windows, so once I was in there I had no idea what was going on outside of my little bubble. From never having performed it before, I was a little unsure as to how long I would realistically spend with each participant and decided to go with a drop in type set-up rather than timed slots. I must admit that waiting in that little room at the start of the evening made me very nervous that nobody would come in to see me!
However, once the drinks were flowing and everybody was chatting away at the bar, the word was spread around and I was joined by lots of individuals who shared both their time and their personal thoughts with me. Setting up an intimate space is something I am definitely still learning about. In effect, I am asking those who choose to interact with Rubatosis to very quickly share their personal experiences with a stranger, in a strange setting. I found myself talking about my own experiences a lot more than I anticipated or planned. Of course, people responded better once I had shown that I was just as vulnerable as they were. What I thought would be a cathartic experience for my participants, became accidentally cathartic for myself as well. I think the most important thing which I have taken away from performing this for the first time, is that this interaction is an exchange and not just a service.
Initial performances are scary and I’m so pleased that Rubatosis has now officially started. Official documentation of the performance evening will follow shortly. So for now, a final thank you to those lovely Cardiff folk who dropped in for a chat and a painting!
FRIENDS TO FOLLOW
Lauren Burch – @laburch1
Chris Johnson – @ChrisSonOfNeil
Cardiff Fringe – @Cardiff_Fringe
Tess Seymour (photography) – @TessSeymourPhotography