Monday, 24 March 2014

recent art afternoons

Images from recent Art afternoons.

Women's world day of prayer so we left the hall early as it was being used for the event and strolled to the Newlyn Art gallery, interesting art, discussions, possibilities and tea and cake in the cafe with art materials and views 

We try to give time to look at each others work at the end of the session.
Joseph's well considered painting, Zoe photo shoot of her orange costume, and the teenagers - what are they doing? I think Arron is pretending to punt on/by the stream! Arron has a good idea for an installation which he is developing with Glen and we hope to find the right venue and opportunity to do involves sticks!

Katie modelling Zoe's work with orange material which Zoe created for her.
It is only a draft, is mock up the right word in dress making /costume?
It is tacked and pinned.
We need to develop our skills and are putting in a textile, costume design bid which if successful will help us move Zoe's and others skills forward.

from Linda and Giles last day and snaps

Gifts come from out of the blue and yesterday Linda sent me a wonderful email ..
I'm quoting some here and taking in a copy to the main co on Friday as she has included lovely appreciative messages for everyone she worked with. " I've  written something to let you know that you are all not forgotten despite my absence and you all share a place in my memory and heart."

"I am often thinking of you all and imagine you all dancing to heavenly music making connections and shapes laughing and lying on the cold wood floor whilst occasional spots of sunlight splurge areas warming them. I also visualise the massive bags and baskets that follow you around Jo like children all needing attention. The last minute panics and the laughs and camaraderie through rehearsals and performance. There was also the frustrations and limitations of the body whose moves when seen in the mind soar so easily but in reality rebel and I remember the aching limbs from trying to break free. But the sacrifices were so worth it. I remember the sweet tears on audience faces and the light and wonder in their eyes. I remember the dream of dancing unknown until it came true and the passion that drives despite the tiredness and doubt. It has been magical, thank you all for that. And Thank you Jo for keeping Shallal alive not giving in to your doubts and fears and tiredness thank you for believing in us all and giving us the wings to soar."

Each person brings so much to Shallal and we are about to also say Good bye but we hope not Farewell to Giles as he moves home to Bodmin. I will leave this blog to write him a letter. Here are some recent images.
Giles saying goodbye

Daniela, Kerry and Alex
Kerry was pleased and excited as she achieved 6 steps unaided in their warm up together. They created some lovely work with balance and support. Skye and Kate in the background Kate is at last working more at her potential and it is exciting to see.

trying to capture the variety of movement and relationship produced in open improvisation
structure, freedom and intent

Dylan with his puppet, it just so happened to be Downs Syndrome Awareness Day and Puppet Day!

Dylan with his Dad George creating wonderful music for the improvisation, (joined by Lydia and Demelza not in view)

Monday, 17 March 2014

Kerry's writing "My own experiences"

My own experiences.
"Dance allows me to show different emotions like feeling free like a bird. Dance allows me to move in ways I normally won't be able too. When I'm dancing I completely forget about my physical body and feel instantly included. Dance, allows me to stretch me to my full potential plus it gives me the chance to explore different opportunities of ways of improving my movement and in turn dance too. When dancing I feel alive, and I completely forget about everything going on in my daily life. Dance allows me to explore different avenues due to the fact, that I like taking risks when dancing. I feel the reason I like/love taking risks is because, I am making up for all the years, I couldn't do anything, apart from move my head and talk, but nowadays, if you met me in 2014, you would see me in a different light as, I live totally independently in the community and live my life to the full, just like anyone else. I believe that's a lot to do with my own determination plus the help of surgeons too. Otherwise, I wouldn't be walking with the help of a walking frame and  to be honest with you, I didn't ever think I was ever going to be able to walk and enjoy the flow of dancing, dancing is a very big part of my life now. Embrace life as a whole. If I can do it, hopefully what I have written may encourage others too."

relaxing at St Ives in between performances

Kerry and Toby at The Performance Centre with Works in Progress 2011

Kerry joined Shallal through Open House with Colin and Terri and then progressed into the main company. I could write so much about her work and all she brings to the company but for now I will let her words speak, and just thank her.
On an arty note we plan to revisit the duo Kerry created with Terri using bamboos poles, this time working with Colin.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Echoes dance co Open Meeting

nice film of Echoes on  you can see  Kerry and Demelza, and Olga who performed with us and supported and helped us some years ago!

Monday, 10 March 2014

Thank you to St Peter's.

Old friends from St Peter's Church, Newlyn, the main company rehearse in their hall, recently asked me to write something for the church magazine.

They are also seeking to publicise their work within the community. They are an extraordinary group and I am so grateful to them and it was a pleasure to thank them openly.

A Big Thank You

I have often wanted to say `A big thank you” to St Peter’s Church
however “do not let your left hand know what your right hand’s doing” applied to some of our loyal supporters and they wouldn’t have thanked me for it.
May I now say, as I often do to others, that without St Peters loyal support and understanding (always given in a Christian way freely offered in our hour of need, we never asked for it ), we would not have survived!

So who are we?
We are now an inclusive arts charity celebrating, diversity, ability and community.
We were for the first fifteen years of our life a community group based at St Peter’s Hall. Our initial group came from members of Penzance Gateway club and soon other local artists joined us.
At various times we shared the hall with the Luncheon Club and made way for The Monday Art group. Intermittently we have also worked at and had support from The Acorn Theatre, Penzance but moved back to St Peter’s for access when someone who uses a wheelchair wanted to join us ( before The Acorn had physical access) and at other times. We have been back in St Peter’s now for approximately seven years and I love it. It is spacious and light, has a lovely floor and kitchen and we have always had a warm and understanding welcome.

So more about who we are: we are Shallal main company, an inclusive community dance theatre company with ages 13 to 83 at present. Some of us have worked together for over twenty years, some a few weeks. We have all sorts of people working with us: some are artists, some have severe health conditons, some need support with their lives and independence, we do not use labels in any of our publicity, so I will not here, we are people first and we love working together. We believe in the richness that variety and vulnerability can bring to our lives and we share our creative journey and support each other, “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”.

Marjorie and Zoe Wilton have been with us since the beginning. Shallal gave Zoe the platform to show the world some of her extraordinary creative talents, she is an amazing solo dancer but it never stops, described as a renaissance woman she is now exploring fashion, as we work with performance in the morning and different art forms in the afternoon.

We sometimes receive generous funding and travel and can perform wonderful shows, we sometimes nearly close from lack of funds.
As well as large shows and projects we continually receive invitations to perform: last year we were at New County Hall for three events.

We want to show what people have to offer, what they can give and a small example of inclusion and how society could be, with the right support.

For me personally to work in a building which is prayed in, which has Christian values and support is wonderful and makes coming to work even more of a joy. We are called to show / know each person is made in God’s image and likeness. The creative arts allow us to meet equally, the physical safety and simplicity of St Peter’s Hall helps that, we are all in one room together, we eat lunch together and we work together.

I would like to repeat a heartfelt “thank you” from the thirty members of the main company and their families and supporters, our trustees and friends to all at St Peter’s who have shown us such longstanding understanding and support.
We meet on Fridays in term time and pause for lunch between 12.40pm and 1.20pm. Do come and meet us say hallo and have a cup of tea.

Jo Willis

Who I am;
I am one of the founders and the Artistic director of Shallal.
I lived in Newlyn for sixteen years and St Peter’s Church was a second home for me. I was received into the Russian Orthodox church in 1988 but often worshipped on Sundays with St Peter’s as then our church only held services every two months. My husband and I were married in St Peter’s Church, in 1991 and we had four children. We lived with a view of the Mount, facing the sunrise, a continual blessing.
Our family moved to Falmouth ten years ago, as we had outgrown our Newlyn home and we now have five children. I am very happy to return to work in the Hall and to see old friends. Penwith is a special place for me and I often wonder if Shallal could have thrived and been understood as well elsewhere.