Be Proud Of Me, winter 2003, a former lathe factory, sub-zero and a black-out. Home Of The Wriggler, winter 2005, a former something factory, sub-zero and no daylight. Now, The Cleansing Of Constance Brown, now, a former metal salvage unit, it feels like sub zero and the floor is black with a hundred years of oil and grease. When I first moved to Birmingham in 1991 I loved walking the streets of Digbeth and through raised roller shutter doors watching things being made. The Flaneur of 2007 can repeat the journey and see theatre being made, open to the street, it’s ludicrous. Stories of companies disappearing to the Tuscan Hills or Central Spain or the Slovenian countryside to spend months preparing to change the course of theatre history make now total sense. Who’d come here to work in these conditions to try and do anything strip the tin from the insides of old tin cans?
Hopefully this will be the last show made by Stan’s Cafe in these conditions. We seem to be on the cusp of signing a deal that will bring us a new, long term, purpose built office and rehearsal/performance space. It can’t come too soon.
Aside from this moaning it is perhaps important to report that the show is developing very well despite the adverse conditions. Craig with various assistants has constructed an excellent, full-scale mock-up of the set for us to work on and it is fantastic; a kind of theatrical particle accelerator where the smallest gestures gain huge energy. At the moment you can do almost anything on the set and it looks fantastic, the problem isn’t going to be coming up with ideas, but how to chose the correct ideas, how hard to push them and how to make thing hang together.
Great cold dirty fun.