I had planned to arrive at the office 15 minute early, but because of the snow I was 15 minutes late. I rushed in apollogetcially, but was quickly told there was no need. The welcome was very warm and I immediately felt at home in the work place. I was given a tour of the small and homely feeling company and was slowly eased into what their company is all about.
New Perspectives is mainly a rural touring company so I was given various videos to watch to get a better understand of what being a rural touring company actually means. I also watched a series of videos on how they go about making a show and touring it around the country from the very start of the process; how the ideas came to mind, to the rehearsals and then on to the actual touring process. The whole process for a production can take up to three years – which is not so surprising when you think about it – however it’s never really a thought you have after you go see a show. We tend to forget the process behind it. I then discussed the different things I had watched and what the difference was between rural touring and a regular touring company. I also had a look at some statistics to evaluate the type of audience they attract the majority of the time.
Something I quite enjoyed was listening to an audio tape I was given. They had developed an idea of organising walks around small villages for a recorded version of The Falling Sky by Brendan Murray. You arrive at a certain location and instead of sitting down and watching a show you receive a map and walkman and take a walk around your village while listening to the audio. It was recorded in such a way which would make you feel part of the piece.
In all it was a very satisfying first day. I got a good introduction on the company and what they do and felt extremely welcomed by all the staff.
Today started out with a more detailed analysis of the company and the background of it. I discovered that it was founded in 1973 by four university graduated from a university in Leeds. I was introduced to the idea of volunteer trustees and the way they get funded by the arts council. I was told that I was coming to the company during a period of big changes.
After this I spent some time learning about how they go about marketing a production. I was shown various examples of flyers and was taught a few useful things I didn’t know about trying to get your show to be successful. I was then set the task to try it out myself. As I am social secretary of the music society I had been told to apply what I had learned to that. I then sat down and discussed the issues I have been having with the society and the aims I would like to set. We then sat down and discussed all the ways I could go about making it more successful.
I found it a very interesting day as I quite like organising and getting things done. Marketing was a great area to put my skills to the test and get an idea of how its done in the ‘real world’. I was happy to see that I had already been putting a lot of those concepts to use.
Today was focused on observing rehearsals of the show Farm Boy written by Michael Morpurgo and adapted by Daniel Buckroyd.
As an actor it was interesting to be on the other side of the rehearsal process and seeing the actors needing to refresh lines and go through a tech run. I had read the script beforehand and already found it a great script. However, seeing the actors John Walters and Gareth Bennett-Ryan bring the script to life was something completely different. They were so energetic and performed the lines in such a dynamic manner. As an actor it inspired me to take things I observed and keep them in my mind for the next time I will be on the acting side of it all.
I was also introduced to a new project. New Perspectives run a scheme called STEP UP and one element of that scheme is the STEP Creatives Ensemble. Here they take a number of new aspiring actors, writers, directors, etc. and develop a show. They would be organising an ‘invitation only’ event and I was given the task of thinking about where to hold the event and told that I would possibly be working on invitations.
Another great day at the company.
DAY 4 & DAY 5
Unfortunately, due to the weather conditions two of the five days had to be cancelled.