Director’s Notes – Unsex Me

The first image that sparked ‘Unsex me’ was; Nick pole dancing to a nostalgic orchestral piece of music; a love theme. A gesture that is coded heavily as a sign of sexuality contrasted with a piece of music that was a representation of love. This sparked a series of questions; what is sexy, not sexy and why? Can sexy be unsexed; ‘Unsex me’.

This piece was both intended to be humorous as well as a critical investigation of our awkward social rituals. This piece was based on many different styles of performance but also many different structural elements of projecting or communicating ideas; especially ficto-critical and didactic texts. The show is based a lot on our observations and experiences as well as stories that were given to us by friends and family. For these people we are oh so grateful.

I have always had a fascination with objects. Nick brought the love of awkward social behaviour and gesture. This show has a lot of ‘puppets’ in it. If objects taught me anything, it is that anything is possible. A simple glass can become a mate, feeling and/or extension of a person. I have also a natural fascination with language and modes of communication, which Nick also shares. A simple glass was not always called a glass nor it had a function of being able to hold and transfer liquid, it used to be once a simple sculpture without any particular purpose other than its existence. And then someone for the first time used it as a glass… and I suppose it caught on. Then someone put it in a gallery or theatre, and it became an echo of an artwork, with its previous attachments. This idea of language is where I like to start, this attachment of functions and meaning. When coming to theatre one should feel like visiting a foreign country; a foreign country you do not know the language of, nor the exact customs. The only idea linking you and the inhabitants of that ‘country’ is that you think you are both human and that you both want to communicate with each other. Now the worst thing you can do in such an instance is to make that communication predictable, or boring.

This show is very special as it is the first commissioned work by Shh ( Nick has been selected as our first featured artist.