Performance and Theatre

Look Out Mr Stranger

PROJECT OVERVIEW
LOOK OUT MR STRANGER is a site specific performance inspired by the physical, historical and social topography of Henson Park, Sydenham Rd Marrickville with particular attention to the King George V Grandstand.
Over  18 – 24 months  a team of artists drawn together and co-ordinated by Jane Grimley,  will develop a work that responds to this iconic and significant place in Marrickville, Sydney. The project will consist of two creative development periods, and culminate in free public performances in 2011/2012.


The first stage creative development has a research and development focus. It will involve connecting with, and learning from thecommunities that are connected to the Grandstand. It will also involve physical investigations of the place over an 8 week period. Allowing questions to arise from their own interest and curiosity the team will meet regularly to work together, share discoveries and questions to broaden their understanding of the site. Making a work inspired by this historically significant Grandstand contains many possibilities; however the starting point, for each artist to spring from is:

What is it to be inside looking out?

The team will spend a significant amount of time observing, recording and responding to the patterns and qualities of the site over an 8 week period. There will be a small public showing to share our findings and responses at end of this first stage creative development. This is a work in progress showing only.   

The second stage creative development has a performance development and public outcome focus. Continuing to work responsively and collaboratively the team will continue to develop and experiment with their ideas.
The performance at the culmination of this second creative development will be an event that speaks to the local, sporting and artistic communities. It will be a free event, that invites spectators to enjoy a surprising, transformative and unusual experience in the King George V Grandstand.

METHOD/APPROACH TO THE FIRST STAGE CREATIVE DEVELOPMENT
The creative vision for the first stage of this project is that each artist involved will draw upon their own experience and artistic practice when collaborating on this work. The team is also working with approach that it is essential to address ideas through the most meaningful mode or form of creative expression. That is, it is the collective experience of the artists in the site itself, which will inspire and guide the development of the work.
This means that the site itself is at the core of the work. The physical parameters, the social and sporting conventions, the desires of the extended community, the history, the weather, the time of year are all essential considerations when asking the question “What is it to be inside looking out?”
This project begins with a question posed in a specific context, and the evolution of the work right up to and during the public performance of this project, will be determined by the terrain encountered by this team, and in turn how they choose to creatively respond to it.
The aim of the first stage is to create a strong foundation upon which to further develop our the work   LOOK OUT MR STRANGER

Four artists will collaborate over May and June 2010
During the first stage creative development we intend to
1.    Undertake ongoing site investigations observing and discussing the attributes and qualities of the location
2.    Visit local library and other sources to research the history of the site, with the opportunity to share this information with the team
3.    Invite members of the Jets Rugby League club to share ideas and talk about the project and the significance of the site to them
4.    Invite other people who regularly use the Grandstand and grounds to brainstorm ideas and share ideas regarding the project
5.    Review and discuss the process through mentoring and advice sessions with industry mentors
6.    Collaboratively workshop and physically experiment with performance ideas
7.    Rehearse and develop performances on site
8.    Film or record some performance ideas on site
9.    Reflect review and refine our findings and ideas as a team and devise the direction for the second stage creative development
10.    Present the results of our work at a work in progress showing.
The showing would be to an audience of invited industry and community members to gather feedback about the work

RATIONALE
This project aims to work in partnership with the community to enhance Sydney’s cultural landscape publically and inclusively. It brings a range of people together to investigate the historical and cultural significance of a place through the creative inquiry. It invites cultural exchanges between sport and art, encouraging diversity and open exchange. Through this project we come together as a collaborative artistic team to benefit from experienced mentors, learning new skills, processes and best practice. Using an informed artistic practice, this project is
Initiated and created by a young and enthusiastic group of contemporary artists working in the field of performance. It is an opportunity to develop our artistic practice together over a long time frame and engage in a project with depth and care. This first stage development of the work is the foundation for a work on a much larger scale. We intend on gathering support and funding to back a large, public, site specific performance of Look Out Mr Stranger.  Look Out Mr Stranger the potential to be presented in September 2011 or 2012 as part of the Marrickville Street Festival, or other public art event.