Thursday, 30 July 2015

Stuff Of Myth And Legend

The pier in Ardfern. It's important. You'll know why if / when  you see the show. 

We spent a week here. 

Ardfern is a real place, but it feels like stepping in to a story - in to a mythical world at the end of a road. It's down a single track road with this pier on the other end. The locals described it a bit like an island - a place where they party till the early hours and barricade the road with fire to stop people coming down. It's a great place. 

After being in Ardfern for four days we had performed at the village cabaret, been to a barbecue up a big hill, been dancing at the pub, ate some very tasty food and been for tea at a plant nursery. We felt like locals. 

To be welcomed in to a community so openly, so wholeheartedly is amazing. 

This is Jim, with the tasty food. 
We also did a tiny sharing of FABLE. FABLE is our new show, it opens on the 5th August at Summerhall as part of the Edinburgh Festival. FABLE is inspired by Ardfern, the village, and a specific man in that village called Blair. We met Blair once - late at night in the village pub back in November. He recited some poetry and told filthy jokes. We all drank a lot of whiskey. We didn't mean to meet him. He was just there. 

Since then - a wet and windy night in November 2014 - FABLE has come in to focus. It's a show about belonging, about freedom, about being able to be how and who you want to be. 

When we did our tiny sharing to 8 people in Ardfern, it was different though. It was a show about Ardfern and it was a show about their friend, Blair. Suddenly, the idea of doing a show called FABLE made so much more sense. A real man has sewn a kernel of an idea in our minds and imaginations - to us he's become sort of mythical. He isn't in Ardfern now, he's in the Arctic living with Bears. So he's turned in to a different Blair from the one the folks in Ardfern know. To us he's a symbol, a figure of adventure and independence. To the folks in Ardfern he is a friend they miss, a character they love and someone who makes up the fabric of their community. 

At the end of the sharing one person was crying. 'I just miss Blair' she said. 

Tomorrow we do a sharing in Comarty, a beautiful town on the East Coast of Scotland. A town that know nothing about Ardfern and nothing about Blair. To them, and to the vast majority of the folks who watch the show in Edinburgh, FABLE is a play. 

The Galley Of Lorne Inn - the village pub
But it's not just a play. It is a fable. It's a tale woven from a small amount of truth and turned in to a myth. We couldn't have imagined the show without having landed in Ardfern and met Blair. That's an extraordinary feeling - to arrive in a community who have inspired you to make something. And who, in their day to day lives, continue to be such a glorious, inspiring community living in a glorious inspiring place. 

Fore about the show head to / @FlanCol


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