As I addressed in my previous post, Making a Show, a concern for my piece is that it will not be interesting for an audience. Due to this, I have begun to think about additional ways to make my piece more engaging and interesting for the audience- primarily by ‘animating’ the story. Instead of simply talking to the audience about these journeys (like one of Spalding Gray’s productions) I intend to direct incorporate the audience into the piece.
For instance, in one of my memories I was sat in a 7-seat people carrier when we drove through a thick forest-like area. As we did, branches and sharp leaves of the trees started to scratch against the car and eventually got in through the windows (in those days air conditioning in hire cars was a luxury). Everyone in the car (me, my brothers, my dad and my sister’s boyfriend (at the time) frantically tried to close the window to prevent getting attacked. How I would want to show this on stage would be to set out 7 seats and have the audience sit in them, as if they were in the car with me. When they were in the ‘car’ I would use prop tree branches and brush against the side of the ‘car’ so that the story involved the audience (by placing them directly into the action). I have also thought about creating sound effects to go with this, such as making a high pitch screech to replicate the sound of the branches scratching the car. I would also use lighting to display changes in locations and temperature- when driving through the forest I would have the lighting change from a bright warm light to a dark green, creating a clear transition of location and further involving the audience into the story.
I may also have the audience ‘play’ the different characters in the story, for example, placing my dad’s hat and camera case on someone whilst in the car and asking them to mime driving. I am also planning to have scripts to give to the audience so that they can speak as different characters. By doing so, I want to create an intimate and engaging experience for the audience, they are not only listening to some of my fondest memories, but reliving them with me. I am considering limiting the audience to 6 people, thus creating a fun, friendly and intimate atmosphere (thereby recreating the emotions I felt whilst on my holidays for the audience).