Spark Series at FringeArts + part of an Off-Showcase for
International Performing Arts for Youth Conference, Philadelphia, USA
Royal BC Museum, Victoria, BC, December 2017
Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff UK, June 2016
Mayfest, Bristol UK, May 2016
Fusebox Festival, Austin USA, April 2015
Royal BC Museum, March 2015
Pacific Opera Scene Shop, Victoria BC, 2014
Theatre SKAM - Victoria, BC
current core artists Pamela Bethel, Ingrid Hansen, Matthew Payne, Pauline Stynes, Shayna Ward
past collaborators Jenny Ambrose, Erin Crowley, Max Johnson, Sarah Pelzer
In a Nutshell: We teach kids how to run with scissors and share needles. Then they do a show: a few lucky audience members give up their clothes to be completely made over by this motley crew of young makers. Sound scary? We'll have you saying "Pick me! Pick me!" in no time.
In a Coconut Shell (or some kind of bigger shell...a conch?): We work with kids, usually ages 9-13, over the course of a week or so (10-12 hours total) in training sessions where they learn hand and machine sewing skills, garment reconstruction/up-cycling techniques, drama/public speaking and interviewing skills. We facilitate discussions about fast fashion, style vs. fashion and where our clothes come from.
The show is more of a live art installation than a traditional performance, and our audiences play a key role. When they arrive, audience members choose a sticker - either one that says "I'm In!" or one with an image of a chicken (no presh). If you're in, you might get picked by one of the teams of kids. If they pick you, you relinquish your clothes (you'll borrow a comfy robe) and the kids will completely re-create them. All the teams have 55 minutes to complete the outfit, while the audience roams around, watching the young makers in action. The event culminates with a fashion show.
Us adults act as emcees, facilitators and troubleshooters but the whole point is giving the children agency, responsibility and freedom to take risks. So we pretty much let them call the shots, which sometimes makes us or them or the audience uncomfortable...and that's when the magic happens.
Learn more at SKAM's website.